William Shakespeare, one of the most famous playwrights in history, wrote in Early Modern English. While his language is somewhat recognizable, it is still quite different from modern English. To help you better understand his works, this guide will walk you through translating the Shakespearean language into modern English.
Here is a list of the top 11 free Shakespeare translator tools available in 2023. These tools will help you convert Shakespearean text into modern English with ease.
- LingoJam’s Shakespearean English to Modern English – <ahref=”https://lingojam.com/ShakespeareanEnglishtoModernEnglish”>LingoJam
- Shmoop’s Shakespeare Translator – <ahref=”https://www.shmoop.com/shakespeare-translator”>Shmoop
- Fun Translations Shakespeare Translator – <ahref=”http://funtranslations.com/shakespeare”>Fun Translations
- LitCharts’ Shakescleare Translations – <ahref=”https://www.litcharts.com/shakescleare/shakespeare-translations”>LitCharts
- No Sweat Shakespeare Translator – <ahref=”https://nosweatshakespeare.com/resources/shakespeare-translator/”>No Sweat Shakespeare
- Your Dictionary Shakespeare Translator – <ahref=”https://reference.yourdictionary.com/translation/shakespeare-translator.html”>Your Dictionary
- ETechShout’s Shakespeare Translator – <ahref=”https://etechshout.com/shakespeare-translator/”>ETechShout
- Tech Latest’s English to Shakespearean Translators – <ahref=”https://tech-latest.com/english-to-shakespearean-translators/”>Tech Latest
- Shakespeare Translator App – <ahref=”https://apps.apple.com/us/app/shakespeare-translator/id1194114904″>Apple App Store
- SparkNotes Shakespeare Translations – <ahref=”https://www.sparknotes.com/shakespeare/”>SparkNotes
- Babylon Translator – <ahref=”https://www.babylon-software.com/translate/shakespeare/”>Babylon
3. Shakespearean Phrase Examples and Translations
In this section, we will provide some sample Shakespearean phrases and their modern English translations.
- Shakespearean: “To be, or not to be: that is the question.”
Modern English: “To live, or not to live: that is the question.”
- Shakespearean: “A rose by any other name would smell as sweet.”
Modern English: “A rose would still smell just as good, even if it had a different name.”
- Shakespearean: “All the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players.”
Modern English: “The whole world is like a theater, and all the people are just actors.”
- Shakespearean: “Brevity is the soul of wit.”
Modern English: “Being concise is the essence of being clever.”
- Shakespearean: “Et tu, Brute?”
Modern English: “You too, Brutus?”
4. Understanding Shakespeare’s Pronouns
Shakespeare’s plays often use unique pronouns that may be unfamiliar to modern readers. Here are some common Shakespearean pronouns and their modern English equivalents:
- Thou: You (singular, informal)
- Thee: You (singular, informal, object form)
- Thy: Your (singular, informal, possessive)
- Thine: Yours (singular, informal)
- Ye: You (plural, formal)
- You: You (particular, formal)
5. Why was the English Language so Creative in Shakespeare’s Time?
During Shakespeare’s time, the English language was in a period of rapid development and expansion. The Renaissance, a time of significant cultural and intellectual growth, led to an explosion of new words, phrases, and creative expression. Shakespeare himself is credited with coining or popularizing many words and expressions still used today, such as “break the ice,” “wild goose chase,” and “in a pickle.”
6. Helpful Resources for Shakespeare Study Guides
To further support your understanding of Shakespeare’s works, here are some helpful resources that offer study guides and additional information:
- No Fear Shakespeare – <ahref=”https://www.sparknotes.com/nofear/shakespeare/”>SparkNotes
- Shakespeare in Modern English – <ahref=”https://www.shakespeareinmodernenglish.com/”>Shakespeare in Modern English
- Shakespeare Navigators – <ahref=”http://www.shakespeare-navigators.com/”>Shakespeare Navigators
- Shakespeare Online – <ahref=”http://www.shakespeare-online.com/”>Shakespeare Online
- Shakespeare Resource Center – <ahref=”http://www.bardweb.net/”>Shakespeare Resource Center
7. Wrapping Up
In this comprehensive guide, we have covered the basics of translating the Shakespearean language to modern English, provided a list of top free Shakespeare translator tools, shared examples of translated phrases, discussed Shakespeare’s unique pronouns, explored the creative nature of the English language during his time, and recommended helpful resources for study guides. With these tools and resources, you’ll be able to understand better and appreciate the works of William Shakespeare, even if you are a tech noob.
Remember, as you explore Shakespeare’s plays, be patient and give yourself time to adjust to the language. Use the translation tools and resources provided in this guide to support your understanding, and soon you’ll be able to enjoy the beauty and depth of Shakespeare’s works in their original form.
We hope this article has been helpful in your quest to understand the Shakespearean language better and that you can confidently navigate the world of Shakespeare’s plays and poetry. Happy reading!