The University of Southern California’s new sprawling $700 million addition called the USC Village includes dorms, a dining hall, and retail stores. What it does not include is a misspelling of Shakespeare’s name on its statue of the mythological Greek queen Hecuba, according to USC.
The base of the statue features a quote from “Shakespear’s ‘Hamlet.’” But the missing e was on purpose, you guys. Really.
“To E, or not to E, that is the question. Over the centuries his surname has been spelled 20 different ways. USC chose an older spelling because of the ancient feel of the statue, even though it is not the most common form,” the school said in a statement to TMZ. If you’re quiet, you can almost hear the self-satisfied chuckle of a bunch of corduroy-wearing English professors, huddled over cups of strong English tea.
Despite their supposed fealty to the “older spelling,” TMZ noted that all of the classes in the university’s course catalogue spell the Bard’s name “Shakespeare.”
No one is delighting more in this apparent misspelling, of course, than longtime USC rivals UCLA, who were eager to share pictures of the statue in a snarky tweet:
If only all of USC’s drama were this innocent.