Shakespeare Recited in the Original Accent of His Time

Shakespeare Accent
screenshot via Shakespeare on Toast

British actor and voice artist Ben Crystal talks about how the works of William Shakespeare should be recited in what is believed to be his original accent to a group of students attending a seminar through the British Council English and Exams. In doing so, Crystal also explained the importance of knowing this accent, how he produced the accent, why his voice got deeper during the recitation and how the accent made its way around the world.

Wherever I go whatever age whether it’s eight years old or 80 years old and I say what accent does that remind you of and someone goes ‘Pirates of the Caribbean”… Shakespeare’s London was a melting pot of accents people would come from Norwich and Wales and Scotland and Ireland and Midlands and Somerset and pirate country and they come to London and their accents would all mix in together and then of course later on they’d go to Bristol and sail across to America and later still they’d be sent to Bristol and go down to Australia and that’s in part where those accents all come from

Lori Dorn
Lori Dorn

Lori is a Laughing Squid Contributing Editor based in New York City who has been writing blog posts for over a decade. She also enjoys making jewelry, playing guitar, taking photos and mixing craft cocktails. Lori can be found posting on Threads and sharing photos on Instagram.