Home DESTINATION SPOTLIGHT Messina, Sicily: Was Will Shakespeare Born There?
Messina, Sicily: Was Will Shakespeare Born There? PDF Print E-mail

As Williiam (Guglielmo) might have written, Essere o non essere (to be or not to be), that is the question for seniors who consider traveling to Sicily. We’ve visited the Italian island several times, and despite the negative image fostered by “The Godfather” and other Hollywood fiction, we found Sicily and its people peaceful, friendly and inviting. 

A recent outlandish theory about Shakespeare has some scholars wondering. The locale of the Bard’s play, “Much Ado About Nothing” is Messina, a picturesque city in northeast Sicily. Other plays are also set in Italy, including the immortal, “Romeo and Juliet”, “The Merchant of Venice”, “The Taming of the Shrew” and at least a half-dozen more.

According to some creative Sicilian historians, because the Bard was so familiar with Sicily and Italy, he must have been born there. Further, at least one expert claims Will’s original name is a translation of Guglielmo Crollalanza. Imagine trying to spell that on your Lit 101 exam!

More speculation is that the Bard emigrated from Sicily to England as a teenager. There he fell in love with and studied the language at Stratford-Upon-Avon with his future wife. She was Anne Hathaway, a kindly inkeeper a dozen years older than the handsome young Guglielmo. If you can believe the Sicilian story, the rest is Lit 101 history!

For more information, go to en.comuniitaliani.it/083/048


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