Sunday, July 16, 2017

Shakespeare and Snorri by Leanne Dyck

For a while now I've planned to do some research on famous authors for my blog. Recently I followed through on this plan and I'd like to present, for your reading pleasure, want I've found.

In a nutshell, I found conspiracy and greed.

William Shakespeare

William Shakespeare is widely regarded as one of the greatest writers in the English language'

born:  1564 in Stratford-upon-Avon, United Kingdom
Occupation:  Playwright
wrote from  1590 to 1613
wrote 37 plays, 160 poems and Sonnets
Conspiracy:  but did he write them all by himself? Or did Marlow help him?
died:  1616 in Stratford-upon-Avon, United Kingdom
how:  it's a mystery, but there is some speculation that he drank himself to death

Century upon century later, his work still charms us...

Bard on the Beach Shakespeare Festival (BC)

Shakespeare in the Ruins (Manitoba)

Shakespeare on the Saskatchewan (Saskatchewan)

Stratford Festival (Ontario)

(Illustration of Thor and his eight legged horse--a story by Snorri Sturluson)

Snorri Sturluson

His genius lay in his power to present all that he perceived critically as a historian with the immediacy of drama

born:  1179 in Dalasysla, Iceland
Occupation:  Historian, Poet, Politician (Chieftan)
wrote from 1223 to 1235
wrote the Prose Edda and Heimskringla

Using his considerable literary talent, Snorri gained favour with the Norwegian king. The Prose Edda repopularized figures from Norse mythology -- Thor (the god of war), Odin (all father) and Loki (the trickster). 

Through the Prose Edda, I hear Snorri say to the Norwegian king, "Remember this, your people and my people we're the same."

The Heimskringla is a history of the Norwegian kings from Odin to Magnus Erlongsson (1184).

Here, I hear Snorri say, "I know how powerful you are. Iceland knows how powerful you are. We don't want our independence. Why would we? It's just talk."

And thus Snorri feathered his own nest while selling out his country.

Did it work? Well...

died:  1241
how:  King Haakon ordered Snorri's assassination

Next post:  Book review:  Short by Holly Goldberg Sloan and Room by Emma Donoghue -- Target reader
Published:  Sunday, July 23 at approximately 5 PM PT

Read on to discover the dog part to this story...

A little more than a month ago, we had to take Bim to the vet. He's fine now but he wasn't then. Anyhow our vet met us at the door with three puppies in tow--all needing a home. You guessed it. We now have three dogs. And Bim is busy trying to educate his new students. 

To name the puppies I drew upon my interest in promoting literature and my culture. I settled on Snorri and Shakespeare. 

Why Snorri?
He's an Icelandic author, I thought and knew little more. Now that I do know more I'm a little disappointed in my choice. I like the fact that Snorri reawakened interest in Norse mythology and contributed to it by writing stories about Odin, Thor, and Loki. I strongly dislike the fact that he sold out Iceland to feather his own nest. 
Re-think:  While washing the dishes I thought, Arni...
I grew up beside a man who always had time for me--this little girl with tons of questions. He always made me feel special and welcome. You guessed it, his name was Arnold.
Also, I'm a fan of an Icelandic thriller author Arnaldur Indridason.
Snorri has become Arni.

Oops, Shakespeare
I love the name Shakespeare for a dog. I shortened it to 'Shakes' and loved it even more. Then I started teaching the puppies tricks like sit and shake a paw... Oops. With a red face, I realized that naming the puppy Shakespeare was equivalent to naming him stay or come. 
Solution:  Shakespeare has become Farley--named after the Canadian author Farley Mowat.
I wonder how many Canadian dogs are named to honour him? My guess is a lot. 

A friend once told me, "Raising a puppy is like having four dogs."

And getting two puppies at once is like having eight?

My husband and I weren't prepared to raise eight dogs--or at least these two particular puppies. Especially while caring for Bim who's health was failing. And didn't feel safe around puppies do didn't understand his aging body or frees.

So with a heavy heart, my husband I were forced to take the puppies back to our local vet. I felt sick about it.

But they both found happy homes and we found our wonder dog Abby. So happy endings all around.


The Dog Who Wouldn't Be by Farley Mowat

Read the first chapter