Gamaliel Ratsey

(c. 1535—1605) highwayman

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(d. 1605), highwayman, hanged in 1605. In the pamphlet Ratseis Ghoaste (one of several pamphlets and ballads in which he appears), Ratsey advises the leader of an itinerant company of players to perform in London, where his Hamlet will rival Burbage's, but to return to the provinces with enough money to buy ‘some place of worship’. This may be a topical reference to Shakespeare's upward social mobility. The pamphlet provides one of the most detailed pictures extant of provincial actors in Shakespeare's time.

From The Oxford Companion to Shakespeare in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Shakespeare Studies and Criticism.

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