A Publication of
THE CATHOLIC STUDY CIRCLE
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From The Ark No. 188 Summer 2001Was Shakespeare anti-Vivisection?
We can see from the passage below that the great Dr Samuel Johnson was!
In his 1765 edition of Shakepeares plays, Dr Samuel Johnson (1709-1784) writes a note on Cymbeline Act I, scene 5, lines 18f:
I will try the forces
Of these thy compounds on such creatures as
We count not worth the hanging, but none human.
Shall from this practice but make hard your heart.
There is in this passage nothing that much requires a note, yet I cannot forbear to push it forward into observation. The thought would probably have been more amplified, had our author lived to be shocked with such experiments as have been published in later times, by a race of men that have practised tortures without pity, and related them without shame, and are yet suffered to erect their heads among human beings.
Sent in by Ark member Louis Coulson. With thanks.
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