Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Shakespeare - Private Papist

Blog reader Rob Crisell, who is affiliated with Shakespeare in the Vines in California, sent along something I have never seen before - an icon of William Shakespeare.  I imagine it's the only one that exists.  The Latin phrase means Private Papist, a reference to the fact that Will was a secret Catholic at a time that this was against the law in England.  As you can see it's very well done.  The artist (or "writer" in iconography terms) is Nicholas Ivins.


4 comments:

Anonymous said...

Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but "papista perivit" means "a papist has perished." He should have put "papista privatus" or better,"papista occultus."
As for me, I'm not ready for devotion to Shakespeare. In his day, cryptocatholics were quite common, I would think. ppeter

Soren Crisell said...

As the "commissioner" of the icon, I can tell you that "Perivit Papista" means "He died a Papist," a reference to the remark of Richard Davies, archdeacon of Lichfield, who did some early biographical research on the Bard in the late 17th century. God bless! Rob Crisell

Anonymous said...

It is generally accepted that Shakespeare died in the faith.What is not certain was whether he practised Elisabethan "conformity" as a matter of form or belief. One other thing is also certain; his themes in his plays, and to a lesser extent his sonnets,are more in tune with the Roman Church than the Anglican distortion the Church of England had become under the heretic Elizabeth as opposed to her father Henry VIII, who was more a schismatic.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous....during Elizabethan times it was mandatory to register in a local Anglican parish. While in London, Shakespeare has never been found on the parish rolls of any Anglican church. His known residences also were in areas exempted from this requirement - it appears he chose these areas for this reason. If he was a conformer to the Anglican religion there is no proof while the his absence as a member of a parish lends more credibility to his Catholic faith.