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  1. #1
    mmasny is offline Key Member
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    mine/my Shakespeare

    Quote Originally Posted by Shakespeare
    Dazzle mine eyes, or do I see three suns?
    Here's a post by W. Shakespeare. Can you explain it to me?

  2. #2
    Linguist__ is offline Senior Member
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    Re: mine/my Shakespeare

    Quote Originally Posted by mmasny View Post
    Here's a post by W. Shakespeare. Can you explain it to me?
    Perhaps in modern English it would be 'Is it my eyes, or do I see three suns?'. The reference to 'three suns' is a phenomenon known as 'sun dog'.

    Sun dog - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    In Early Modern English, the possesive forms 'mine' and 'thine' were used as genitives ('my' and 'thy') before vowel sounds.

  3. #3
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    BobK is offline Harmless drudge
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    Re: mine/my Shakespeare

    It seems to be something to do with this: Sun dog - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    As for the language, 'mine' = my. Putting the verb first, rather than 'do <subj> <verb>?' is the normal order for questions at the time; you could also form questions with 'do', as we do today, and Shakespeare used both (as in this line) to suit the metre (in this case, Iambic pentameter - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. 'Dazzle', for Shakespeare, meant 'be dazzled'.

    So the line could be rendered like this: 'Are my eyes being dazzled/tricked, or do I see three suns?' Knowing Shakespeare, I wouldn't be surprised if the 'three suns' had some metaphorical meaning in the context of the play ([U]Henry VI part 3[/U); but I've never read it.

    b

  4. #4
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    BobK is offline Harmless drudge
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    Re: mine/my Shakespeare

    ps I left my last post as it was, because although it duplicated some of what TheLinguist said it added something. Reading his/her post again, I've realized I should add something about our 'translations'.

    Theirs was 'Is it my eyes, or ...'. This is an idiomatic way of asking - sometimes rhetorically - whether your eyes are 'playing tricks on you', so it's not far from my version in meaning (it just introduces an idiomatic expression). Another is 'Do my eyes deceive me, or is it ...?'

    b
    Last edited by BobK; 02-Mar-2010 at 15:19.

  5. #5
    ianhood is offline Junior Member
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    Re: mine/my Shakespeare

    I think the "three suns" refers to one of the battles of the Wars of the Roses (Barnet?) when three suns seemed to be in the sky. According to modern experts, some atmospheric conditions can cause this optical illusion.

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