i don't think its essential to know all of Shakespeare's plays before reading this book, in fact one of the things i like the most about the discworld books is how you can be reading something for the 5th time and realise something new. or have great long discussions about them like this
I agree. To confess, I from all of Shakespeare's plays I only ever actually read MacBeth at school (and even this in a dumb-German-basic-English-class-pupils-are-to-stupid-to-understand-it-otherwise-simplified-version
), although of course I know about the one or the other content (Romeo and Juliet or "To be or not to be"... is there anybody out there who never had heard of?). On the other hand spotting the several MacBeth references has been enjoyable in itself.
And still are.
Now I have read the complete DW series a second time in the right order I again have begun to pick the highlights and just started with "Wyrd Sisters".
This book I already have read three or four times, but there, right on the second page I spotted two nice little foreshadowings which I never spotted before:
[Some descriptions of the Ramtops and Lancre, then:] Even the land, at times, seems alive ...
[The gods] play games others than chess with the fates of mortals and the thrones of kings. It is important to remember that they always cheat, right up to the end...
It was fascinating, well, you presumble hardly would spot it by first reading (except you indeed remember very good such little details of phrases), but I am lookind forward what I also still may have missed...
They, by the way, there is a question I always wondered about since I am noch familiar with a name beginning with "Hw":
How do you pronounce "Hwel"?
This name always puzzled me.
When I am reading there always forms somethin like "Hü
well", with a silent "ü"-sound (the sound Ankh-Morporkians skip from Überwald because of the silly dots, something similar-sounding as the "u" in "turn") turning up undeliberately between H and w to prevent my (imagined) tongue to choke itself.
But I always had the suspicion that this pronuncation might be far from its actual pronuncation, especially in a native English speaking tongue... Okay, presumbly Hü
well nevertheless would be jumping again up in my mind again and again while reading like a jack-in-the-box, but at least I would know how to pronounce it the right way.
Somewhere above there has been mentioned a connection between "Hwel" and "Will", therefore it would be something in the direction of "Well", "Will" or similar?