Hi, have been a long-time watcher of the community, although this is my first time posting, I think. I recall seeing a few earlier posts about where the names Rosencrantz and Guildenstern came from, and my dad just found something that might put that to rest, if it hasn't been already. PLUS it links my family to Shakespeare AND Ros and Guil, so that's extra exciting for a huge fan :D. My family's surname is Diggs, and according to my dad, we are distantly related to astronomer Thomas Digges. Dad recently checked out The Infinite Book by John D. Barrow from the library, which discusses scientific questions about infinity: specifically we found how Thomas Digges knew William Shakespeare, and the significance of the names/characters Rosencrantz and Guildenstern. Here is a little snippet of what the book says, plus I include a link so you can see a website that discusses it as well:
"In fact Shakespeare knew the Digges family and was acquainted with the
correspondence between the great Danish astronomer Tycho Brahe and Digges's
associates, and he portrait of Tycho under the family shields of his
great-great-grandparents Sophie Gyldenstierne and Erik Rosenkrantz. Tycho still
supported an Earth-centred model of the Universe which he published in 1588 and
it appears that Shakespeare constructed Hamlet, his greatest tragedy, with all
manner of allusions to these astronomical debates and the protagonists involved.
His characters Rosenkrantz and Guildenstern emerge in this way, representing the
geocentric world-view of Tycho, which the false king Claudius derives from the
ancient astronomer Claudius Ptolemy (c. AD 140), whose model of the Universe was
displaced by Copernicus. Claudius memorably summons the two courtiers to help
him with a new geocentric model, whereupon Hamlet makes his eloquent poetic
affirmation of the infinite world of his friend Thomas Digges: 'I could be
bounded in a nutshell, and count myself a king of infinite space.' "
Isn't that amazing? :D I thought I was going to jump out of my skin or that my head
was going to explode. So I'm basically tied to R and G historically, in some
amazing way that completely makes sense for my family (my dad is really into
astronomy, and he and I are both really into Shakespeare). Wow!
Just thought that I should share that interesting tidbit with you. :) I want to
tell the whole world! Here is the link for the website that I mentioned earlier:
Rosencrantz and Guildenstern in Looove
- RAGAD is in my heritage...