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Subject: Re: Thisbe and Tisbe
Author: Anneza   (guest)
Date: May 25, 2004 at 11:44:01 PM
Reply to: Thisbe and Tisbe by MJ
As Mkali says, Thisbe's originally Greek, all right - Shakespeare took the Pyramus and Thisbe story from the classics, names and all.

Not many languages make a th sound - English and Greek spring to mind! So it's likely that people living in, say, Germany would have dropped the H which they wouldn't pronounce anyway, and arrive at the Tisbe spelling that way.

This probably wouldn't happen now - so much scholarship has gone into researching the historically accurate sounds of words, and this is reflected in our versions of the old stories. I grew up with the knowledge that Ulysses met a sorceress called Circe, but kids today learn that they were Odysseus and Kirke all the time!

Which is cool - but I bet the lad in question wouldn't recognise himself as oh-DIS-ee-is; nor would I know what he would have answered to ...

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