A Modern Day Allusion

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A Modern Day Allusion The Elizabethan era, once filled with long dresses, courtship and theatre has now transitioned into a time when less clothing is considered better and with some teenagers, dating is a quick as a game of musical chairs, switching partners when the music stops. Teenagers are more interested in social media and texting than interacting with other people. There a two allusions that can be switched into Hamlet to allow it to appeal to a young and modern audience. Updating the term Termagant and Hercules could appeal to a more modern audience. Termagant was originally “a deity erroneously ascribed to Islam by medieval European Christians and represented in early English drama as a violent character.” This original allusion is used to describe a nasty or violent person and in Hamlet is it used in Act III Scene ii, before Hamlet performs his play. It is used in the context of “I would have such a fellow whipped for o'erdoing Termagant. It out-Herods Herod.” Hamlet was telling the actors not to overdo their performance and to not have violent outbursts. Many teenagers would not know what this word meant unless they had to look it up for a project. The word bully would be a better fit for a modern audience, because for years, teenagers and kids have been taught about the definition of a bully and what it means to bully another person. The new line would read as “I would have such a fellow whipped for o’erdoing a bully. It out-Herods Herod“ By making this replacement, it would allow teenagers to relate to what the lines are truing to get across, the same goes for Herod. Hercules was a hero in ancient greek times, known for his strength and courage. This original allusion was described in Act II Scene ii, when Hamlet is talking to Claudius and makes reference to himself as Hercules, he says “My father’s brother, but no more like my father Than

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