Shakespeare Scansion

see notes below.

arg   1st foot2nd foot3rd foot4th foot5th foot 
beat 1 beat 2 beat 1 beat 2 beat 1 beat 2 beat 1 beat 2 beat 1 beat 2halfie
1Assume a virtue if you have it not.10assumeavirtueifyouhaveitnot.
2That monster, custom, who all sense doth eat,10thatmonster,custom,whoallsensedotheat,
3Of habits devil, is angel yet in this:11ofhabitsde(vi)lisangelyetinthis
4All the world’s a stage,5139whereinweplayin.Alltheworld'sastage
5And all the men and women merely players.11140andallthemenandwomenmerelyplayers
6They have their exits and their entrances,10141theyhavetheirexitsandtheirentrances
7And one man in his time plays many parts,10142andonemaninhistimeplaysman-yparts,
8Teach me, dear creature, how to think and speak.1033teachme,dearcreature,howtothinkandspeak.
9Lay open to my earthy gross conceit,1034layo-pentomyearthygrossconceit,
10Smothered in errors, feeble, shallow, weak,1035smotheredinerrors,feeble,shallow,weak,
11The folded meaning of your words' deceit.1036thefoldedmeaningofyourwordsdeceit.
12Poor naked wretches, whereso'er you are,1032poornakedwretches,wheresoe'eryouare,
13That bide the pelting of this pitiless storm,1033thatbidethepeltingofthispit(i)lessstorm
14How shall your houseless heads and unfed sides,1034Howshallyourhouselessheadsandunfedsides,
15Your looped and windowed raggedness, defend you1035Yourloopedandwindowedraggedness,de-fendyou
͜͜͜͜ ͜
16From seasons such as these?636Fromsea-sonssuchasthese?o,ihaveta'en
17Men at some time are masters of their fates.10139Menatsometimearemas-tersoftheirfates.
18The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars10140Thefault,dearBru-tus,isnotinourstars
19But in ourselves, that we are underlings.10141Butinourselves,thatweareunderlings.
20Let Rome in Tiber melt and the wide arch1036LetRomeinTibermeltandthewidearch
21Of the ranged empire fall. Here is my space.1037oftherangedempirefall.hereisisspace
22So foul and fair a day I have not seen.1038sofoulandfairadayihavenotseen
͜͜͜͜͜͜ ͜
23A nobler man, a braver warrior,1025anoblerman,abraverwarrior,
24Lives not this day within the city walls:1026Livesnotthisdaywithinthecitywalls:
25He by the senate is accit'd home1027Hebythesenateisaccit'dhome
͜͜͜͜͜ ͜
26From weary wars against the barbarous Goths;1028Fromwearywarsagainstthebarb(a)rousGoths;
27How poor are they that have not patience!10369Howpooraretheythathavenotpatience!
28What wound did ever heal but by degrees?10370Whatwounddideverhealbutbydegrees?
29Thou know’st we work by wit and not by witchcraft,12371Thouknow’stweworkbywitandnotbywitchcraft,
30And wit depends on dilatory time.10372Andwitdependsondilatorytime.
͜͜͜ ͜ ͜
31Does’t not go well? (Cassio hath beaten thee.)5373does'tnotgowell?cassiohasbeatenthee
͜ ͜ ͜͜͜͜
32(Good night, good night!) Parting is such sweet sorrow7~184(good night!goodnight!)Partingissuchsweetsorrow

About this table
The meter/rhythm was adapted from the relevant play:act:scenes of our 10 clues from the Shakespeare Scanned Series on a individual analysis of each respective play from the by Richard L. Leed.

The ten THR/Kor clues are stacked into 32 rows, each row representing a single line of clue, in order of release. Filling out these lines are their 32 Shakespearian Free Verse counterparts (the light gray italicized text in the table) which represent a few phrases excluded from our text that still inform the way our clues are metered.

There are four instances where our clue begins or ends mid-verse:

Line 04
Our text aligns with the beginning of AoS’s line of dialogue, but “All the world’s a stage” begins after a silent beat and actually is the second half of a line verse, the first half of which, “Wherein we play in”, is spoken by Duke Senior.

Line 16
The last line of clue 4, King Lear, ends for us on the 3rd foot, and omits feet four and five: “O, I have ta-en

Line 31
As in the previous example, the last line of the 9th/Othello clue, “does it not go well?” ends prior to the end of the verse, this time after the 2nd foot, omitting feet three, four and five of the line: “Cassio has beaten thee.”

Line 32
Follows the inverse pattern of its predecessor, skipping the first two feet, “Good Night! Good Night!” and keeping the last three, “parting is such sweet sorrow.”

Free Verse and Beats vs. Syllables
Of our 32 lines, seven of them (3, 5, 13, 15, 26, 29, 32) contain an extra syllable that Shakespeare doesn’t count. This allows three syllables to fit into a 2-foot beat without breaking any rules of free verse.

Line 3:  “its devil” has 2 beats (1 foot)

Line 5: “players” has 1 beat (half foot)

Line 13: “this pitiless storm” has 4 beats  (2 feet)

Line 15: “defend you” has 2 beats – (1 foot)

Line 26: “the barbarous goths” has 4 beats (2 feet)

Line 29: “and not by witchcraft” has 4 beats (2 feet)

Line 32: “sweet sorrow” has 2 beats (1 foot)

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