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PEDANTRY - 2: THAT WHICH WE CALL A ROSE

I remember reading, several years ago, that somebody, somewhere, had produced a volume of Shakespeare's plays translated into modern and hence, apparently much more comprehensible, English.

This, from Act II Scene II of Romeo and Juliet, was, I think, an example quoted in that Times Literary Supplement article.

’Tis but thy name that is mine enemy:
What’s Montague? It is not hand nor foot,
Nor arm, nor face, nor any other part.
What’s in a name? That which we call a rose,
By any other name would smell as sweet.'

As far as I can recall,

‘...That which we call a rose,
By any other name would smell as sweet.'

when re-versioned became:

‘...If you called a rose something else,
It would still be a rose.'

Oh please!

What was an expression of undying love has become a rather pointless statement of ’ the bleedin’ obvious'. Where is the elegance, the beauty, the rhythm? And what happened to the undying love?. This ‘modern’ Shakespeare has an odour, rather less reminiscent of the rose than of that which is used to make it grow.

Thank you for reading this far.

David