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What's In a Name? UK Clothier Misspells Shakespeare

By The Look on TODAY Style Mar 7, 2012 8:52PM

By Alexander Smith, The Look on TODAY Style

Presumably in a move to inject some cultured class into their latest line, UK clothier Topshop recently unveiled a new line of T-shirts printed with one of the most beloved lines of English literature: “Romeo Romeo, Wherefore art thou Romeo?” But as Britain's Metro reports, the quote, taken from arguably the most famous play by William Shakespeare, “Romeo and Juliet,” is followed by a serious misspelling.

Topshop UK -- Is this a typo which I see before me? Topshop's errant garment.





The quote is attributed to
“Shakespere.” Oops.

British shoppers with a bit more reverence for their nation’s fabled literary heritage were quick to point out the gaffe, sending Topshop scrambling for a fix. My favorite line from the Metro’s story: According to the Daily Mail, when informed for the error, a Topshop spokesperson responded: "Oh my God."

In the wake of the textile typo, the shirt has since vanished from Topshop’s website. While armies of literature professors are doubtlessly calling for a plague on Topshop’s house, it is an admonition from Shakespeare himself that they should take to heart. “Ignorance is the curse of God,” wrote the Bard in “King Henry VI.” “Knowledge is the wing wherewith we fly to heaven.”

Photo: National Portrait Gallery / AP: Had he not died in 1616, Shakespeare would have probably been less than amused by this.



Alex Smith is a senior editor at TODAY.com, who insists on speaking floridly in iambic pentameter.


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147Comments
Mar 8, 2012 2:24AM
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That is amusing. With different spellings are they pronounced differently?

 

Here is a word that is spelled the same, but pronounced differently: Pierre

 

Some would pronounce the word as "p - air."

 

Some would pronouce it as "peer," as is the capitol of South Dakota.

 

I wonder how William pronounced his last name regardless of how he spelled it?

Mar 8, 2012 2:19AM
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Ripley's believe it or not said Shakesphere's name could be spelled 57 different ways

so forget it already!

Mar 8, 2012 2:17AM
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I believe that everyone is bound to make a mistake here and there, after all no one is perfect. Shakespeare produced many beautiful literary works, but you can't automatically assume that everyone should properly spell his name because his works are so well known. And I'm sure that there are more important and pressing issues In this day and age that could use a little more attention and discussion than the misspelling on a t-shirt print.
Mar 8, 2012 2:15AM
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I think it's pretty daft quite actually that someone can't spell a name. Perhaps they should return to school to brush up on that.
Mar 8, 2012 2:14AM
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This really isn't even a big deal. It's recorded that Shakespeare didn't even know how to spell his own name. There are fourteen recorded different spelling he used (whether he prefered one over the other), which makes finding the authenicity of his work easier. His favorite that he used was "Shakespeare", which is why we've come to use it today. Back in the  16th century, spelling was still changing from Old English. Just saying.

Mar 8, 2012 2:13AM
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savetheb.s. “I'm not a snob. Ask anybody. Well, anybody who matters.”
―Simon Le Bon

 

Mar 8, 2012 2:11AM
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Actually, Shakespeare wouldn't have even noticed this error.  The spelling of Shakespeare's name wasn't formalized until hundreds of years after his death.  He even signed his name different ways, here are six examples the bard used in his writing..

Willm Shakp
William Shaksper
Wm Shakspe
William Shakspere
Willm Shakspere
By me William Shakspeare

 

Mar 8, 2012 2:07AM
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I have a t-shirt from the Space Coast and the last shuttle launch and they spelled one of the shuttle names wrong!!! EDEAVOR!!! If I could post a picture...I would! DUH!
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