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February 9, 2012 10:57 am

Shakespeare Hid Jewish Roots in Order to Write in England

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Portrait of Shakespeare. Photo: wiki commons.

Jewish Chronicle – What’s in a name? William Shapiro might be able to tell you – but you probably know him better as Shakespeare.

According to a new book by French academic Ghislain Muller, Shakespeare’s grandfather was a Jewish immigrant from Bohemia. He claims Richard Shapiro settled in England sometime after 1515, but hid his religion, assuming the name Shakespeare. Jews were banned from England during the Tudor era and were only re-admitted under Cromwell, 40 years after Shakespeare’s death. “If Shakespeare, or his father or grandfather had acknowledged they were Jewish, they would have been dispossessed of all of their lands, houses and goods and probably deported,” said Mr Muller.

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