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Author Topic: Did Shakespeare have Syphilis?  (Read 935 times)

Offline P-Kasso2

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Did Shakespeare have Syphilis?
« on: 23 January, 2018, 01:33:40 PM »

 I was told this the other day when I was asking a friend to help me out with ideas for a charity quiz I am cooking up for the local rugby club.

One thing I wanted were question ideas for a section called 'Books and Writers'. He immediately said "Well, you could have a True or False section - You know, questions like...Did Shakespeare have Syphilis? Yes or No?".

My friend insists that it's True but personally I have absolutely no idea whether Shakespeare had a serious dose of the clap or not.

So is it True or is it False? Did Shakespeare have Syphilis? Yes or No?"   If True then any further details might be interesting to know too.
"I live in hope"

Offline Duffield1

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Re: Did Shakespeare have Syphilis?
« Reply #1 on: 16 April, 2019, 03:11:54 PM »
The answer is that nobody knows!  The evidence suggesting he did includes an increase of mention in his later writings, as well as a signature towards the end of his life which showed signs of a tremor - a common side effect when the disease was treated with mercury.  But this is all circumstantial, according to the Smithsonian Institute, which suggests that exhumation would be the only way to know for sure.