Guest Post: 8 Words You’ll Never Believe Shakespeare Invented!

Words Shakespeare Invented
Hello everyone, hope you’re well! I have a guest post for you today from the company Playster, who are here to talk about Shakespeare and the English language. I have to say, reading this post, I was shocked at some of the words that originally came from Shakespeare! Hope you enjoy. 🙂

~ * ~ is a great source for all things Shakespeare. We’ve got tons of material on the bard, from books, to collections of his sonnets and copies of his greatest plays, to music inspired by the magical worlds he created. Have you ever thought about what a huge impact William Shakespeare had on the English language? Check out these 8 words you’ll never believe he invented!

“Radiance” – All’s Well That Ends Well, Act 1 Scene 1

The word radiance, now defined as “Beyoncé”, originally appeared in the prologue of Shakespeare’s play “All’s Well That Ends Well.” Mourning her absent lover who just ditched her to go to Paris, Helena describes Bertram as a star, and bemoans the fact that she isn’t basking in his radiance all the time. Being a woman in a Shakespeare play, Helena ends up disguising herself as a male doctor and pursuing him—a practical solution to the problem!

Beyonce radiance shakespeare

“Dauntless” – King Henry VI, Part III, Act 3 Scene 3

Without Shakespeare, one of the factions in Veronica Roth’s best-selling Divergent series would be without a name. “Dauntless”, meaning fearless or bold, was first used in “King Henry VI, Part III.” Visit the world of the Dauntless on Playster today!

Dauntless divergent shakespeare

“Swagger” – A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Act 3, Scene 1

Ain’t no swag without Shakespeare. The word was first used by Puck in Shakespeare’s swaggiest play, “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”, in a scene where he throws shade at some riff-raff who have dared to swagger into the presence of Queen Titania. Slay, Puck!

Swagger shakespeare

“Addiction” – Henry V, Act 1 Scene 1

How could we ever talk about our addiction to unlimited entertainment without Shakespeare’s play “Henry V”? The first use of the word “addiction” occurs in the play’s prologue: Henry V is introduced as a formerly shady character who used to eat tons of food and hang out with lowlifes, but somehow ended up OK. If he were alive today, he’d be addicted to Playster for sure.

addiction shakespeare

“Bedroom” – A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Act 2 Scene 2

This one seems so simple, which really goes to show what a linguistic badass Shakespeare was. Next time you’re reading a book on Playster in bed, give a thought to Shakespeare, who created the word “bedroom” especially for A Midsummer Night’s Dream. The first usage technically means “space in your bed” but… whatever.

beyonce bedroom shakespeare

“Majestic” – Julius Caesar, Act 1 Scene 2

Another word often attributed to our world’s supreme leader Queen Bey, “majestic” originally appeared in Shakespeare’s most famous history play, “Julius Caesar”, and was used to describe glorious Roman Empire. We like to think of Playster as “majestic”—you’ll know why when you sign up!

beyonce majestic shakespeare

“Puking” – As You Like It, Act 2 Scene 7

Next time you’re puking, consider Shakespeare. This beautifully descriptive addition to our lexicon first appeared in “As You Like It”, when Jacques is mulling over the transience of life, from our humble beginnings as puking babies to the “second childishness” of old age. Who knew puking could be so deep?

puking shakespeare

“Green-Eyed” – The Merchant of Venice, Act 3 Scene 2

How many dystopian YA protagonists would be without an identity if it wasn’t for ol’ Bill Shakes? The phrase “green-eyed”, used to describe SO many Chosen Ones, first appeared in “The Merchant of Venice” and is attributed to the emotion of jealousy. How many green-eyed saviors can you find on Playster?

twilight green eyes shakespeare

These are just 8 of the hundreds of words that Shakespeare contributed to the English language. Experience the magic of history’s greatest playwright on Playster today!

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Who knew there were so many connections between Shakespeare and Beyonce?! Mind. Blown.
A big thanks to Playster for guest posting. Do you know any interesting words that were invented by Shakespeare? Let me know in the comments!

14 thoughts on “Guest Post: 8 Words You’ll Never Believe Shakespeare Invented!

  1. I always feel a bit sceptical of these kinds of lists – but things like radiance check out (if Google is to be believed). Bedroom is a bit of a weird one though – no one thought to call the room with the bed in it a bed room before Billy came along? We were a sorry nation if Shakespeare needed to shine his brilliance on that conundrum 🙂 no wonder we had outside toilets for so long, what ever would we have called a room for a bath or toilet inside the house – of course, water closet would be awesome!

  2. I love reading the lists and charts that show words Shakespeare created. Such a clever, clever bastard. It totally blows my tiny mind that he helped to alter the English language and that we still speak/write things that he just magically conjured 400+ years ago.

    • He was. It’s so unfair. How was he allowed to have so much talent? Couldn’t they have spread it around a bit?!?!? Haha.

      I actually hate Shakespeare plays, well, every one that I’ve read. But I love and appreciate everything he’s done for language!

  3. “Ain’t no swag without Shakespeare” – that gave me a chuckle! This was a really interesting read, I had no idea Shakespeare invented so many words (not a fan of the word ‘puke’ though :/ )

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