The fact of the abundance of the single- and double-slash symbols gives
a reason for the early theorists' and pedagogues' silence - those symbols
were perhaps so common, and understood so widely among the writers' intended
audiences, that to explain them would have been considered a waste of time.
The irony is that the most common and simple bits of performance practice
become the hardest to reconstruct, while the difficult and controversial
questions of the time, being discussed again and again by the original
source (A writes to explain how to do it, B writes to rebut and destroy A's
credibility, A writes a counterrebuttal, etc) are clearest to us (at least
from an abundance of the evidence point of view).
Timothy S. Hall
Visiting Assistant Professor of Law
Louis D. Brandeis School of Law
>problems to interpretation (e.g., articulation, and realization of the
>ambiguous single- and double-slash symbols, which permeate virginalist
>sources--a topic about which 16th and early 17th English theorists were
>strangely mute, given the symbols' abundance).