Shakespeare Couldn’t Read?
William Shakespeare is regarded as the greatest writer in the English language. Although four hundred years have passed since his death, every school student today will study the life and works of William Shakespeare. However, there’s a startling fact about Shakespeare that few know. When Shakespeare’s daughter, Judith married, she signed her marriage license with a mark or the equivalence of an “X.” In other words, she was illiterate, being unable to read or write!
Here’s my question, “How is it possible for the greatest writer in the English language to allow his daughter to be illiterate? You would think that to a man like Shakespeare, reading and writing would have meant everything. Surely, he would have taken the time to teach his daughter to read and write, but the stark reality is he didn’t. Let this soak in, “The greatest writer in the English language had children who could not read or write.”
As unimaginable as this fact is, how much more unimaginable is it that Christian parents would not pass on their knowledge of God to their children? In the days of the judges, a generation of God’s children were allowed to grow up without knowing the Lord of the works he had done for them (Judges 2:10). I’m afraid many parents are allowing the same thing to happen today. What are we to think of parents who don’t teach the Bible to their children at home. Not only do they not teach their own children, it’s not enough of a priority to allow others to teach them in Bible class. It’s puzzling!
A better question than asking how William Shakespeare could allow his children to remain illiterate is how can we allow our children to grow up biblically illiterate! Give it some thought.