Today it’s all about warbling native woodnotes wild, as we celebrate Shakespeare’s death. The notion that it’s also his birthday is absent from most posts today, as research pedantry rightly asserts itself.

There are a few Bardic tributes floating about in The Mortal Bath – such as this helpful glossary on his major works, but as a special T-lettered tribute today, it seem’d right to dig out some choice nuggets of wrongness from students what I teach English.

Marking essays on Romeo and Juliet (Year 9 – that’s 3rd year old money) and Year 10, who are studying Macbeth, some quality typos abound.

“Dear Dairy (writes Macbeth, confiding in his livestock)…my wife had a plan to kill Duncan. It sounded unbelievable at first, but after her encouragement I decided that I would do as she planed.”

(Terrific image, Lady Macbeth having earlier called on the spirits of joinery to “unsplinter me here”. “I have varnished their possets.”)

Lady Macbeth:
“I haven’t told anyone our little secret, but everyone seems to be so couscous of me.”
(Perhaps because her treasonous acts have gone so against the grain.)

(Is this a loofah I see before me?)

Macbeth’s diary, revealing the hitherto unconsidered use of construction equipment in the King’s murder:

“The deed is done. Diggers stabbed deep inside his chest, stopping the beating of his heart.”

(Presumably then we see Lady Macbeth reversing a JCB into the Royal chamber, hard hat and disgusted expression on as Macbeth examines his hands.)

Romeo and Juliet analysis:

“Shakespeare mentions how ‘From forth the fatal lions of these two foes…'”

I want to see that version.

Finally, from Juliet’s diary, on how cousin Tybalt’s demise at the hands of her man has put her right off her food:

“Romeo killed my cuisine!”

Exit, pursued by a beard.

The subtleties of perspective, courtesy of Year 9, who have begun study of Romeo and Juliet.

Asked to work in pairs to storyboard the main plot points, they all had the sentence “Romeo is depressed because Rosaline won’t love him.”

This one came from a pair of boys:


…and this one was two girls:


Vivos all round…