Eight Days A Week

Awhile back I put a question out on Twitter asking which day of the week Shakespeare mentions the most.  Bardfilm reminds me that I never posted the answer.

For simple analytical / search questions I head over to Shakespeare.Clusty.com.  It is here that I punched in the various days, and here’s the results:

Sunday:  9 occurrences in 5 works
Monday: 7 occurrences in 5 works
Tuesday: 7 occurrences in 7 works
Wednesday: 15 occurrences in 9 works
Thursday:  15 occurrences in 3 works
Friday: 5 occurrences in 5 works
Saturday: 2 occurrences in 2 works

So Saturday is the clear loser, mentioned the least frequently across all the plays.

But the winner … should we call it Wednesday, or Thursday?  Notice that Thursday is only mentioned in 3 plays, despite having the most mentions at 15.  This is because 12 of those mentions come in Romeo and Juliet while they plan the wedding.  Comparatively, only 3 mentions of Wednesday in R+J.

I think we can to declare Wednesday the winner.  Mentioned the most often, across the widest number of plays.

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2 thoughts on “Eight Days A Week

  1. Assuming that Shakespeare would elide Wednesday into two syllables (as I would today), then it might bear mention that 6 days a week are trochaic. Saturday being the least used most likely has to do with the fact that it is more difficult to fit a 3-syllable word into verse than a single trochee.

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