Singing in a simpler voice

The Twitterverse is full of nutty ideas. On one of my twambles*, I came across @ShakespeareSong – an account dedicated to writing ‘modern songs and phrases in archaic language’.

Guessing the original song is all part of the fun. Take tweets like, ‘Escort me down to the utopian civilisation, where the vegetation is of green hue and the females are elegant and graceful.’

Or ‘I witness thee parading about the village in the company of the female I am infatuated with and so I exclaim, “Fornicate thyself!”’

See? Loads of fun. But we can actually learn a lot from Shakespeare’s reincarnated Twitter self. It’s a great way of looking at how we use words needlessly – and how we can easily say something in five words rather than ten.

Shakespeare knew his stuff about grammar (he was happy to use ‘and’ to start a sentence), but language has moved on since then. We don’t need to use long rambling words and phrases to emphasise a point. (Even if you think it makes you sound smarter.)

Your readers don’t want to spend ages wondering what you’re trying to say. So, in Shakespearean style: ensure thy penmanship is transcribed as guilelessly as is feasible. Or in real terms – stick to writing simply.

Can you come up with a @ShakespeareSong?

*That’s a Twitter ramble. If you put ‘tw’ in front of any word, it automatically becomes Twitter-related. (This is definitely a real fact.)

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