Philip Weller caricature
Philip and Weller hugging

Welcome to my web site, now under development for more than twenty years.   
-- Philip Weller, November 13, 1941 - February 1, 2021
Dr. Weller, an Eastern Washington University professor of English and Shakespearean scholar for more than 50 years.

Note to King Lear, 1.1.111: "orbs"


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King Lear,
Act 1, Scene 1, line 111
We think of the planets as having individual orbits around the sun, but in Shakespeare's time it was thought that the planets and stars circled the earth, with each planet and all of the stars together embedded in a separate sphere, or "orb." It was also thought that the relationships of the various spheres as they circled the earth determined the fate of humans. Shakespeare himself probably did not believe in this, but the belief persists to this day in the practice of astrology.





Atlas carrying the celestial spheres, 1531
Atlas carrying the celestial spheres, 1531