Peter T. Daniels scripsit:

> But we can read anything back to Swift and Pope and Dryden (if
> not Milton) exactly as they spelled them.

I don't have any trouble with Milton's orthography, and the First Folio's
would be no problem either if the i/j and u/v problem was straightened out.

Here's a small sample of Wijk's orthography, somewhat moderated (he uses
dh for [D] and z for [z] except in the noun plural/verb singular ending,
which I consider unnecessary):

Wunce upon a time thare livd a poor boy named Dick Whittington, hoose
father and muther wer bothe ded. Having nyther/neether home nor frends,
he roamd about the cuntry trying to ern his living. Sumtimes he cood
not find eny wurk, and he offen had to go hungry.

On market days he herd the farmers tauk about the greit city ov
Lundon. They sed that its streets wer paved with gold. So Dick made
up his minde to go to Lundon and seek his fortune. Packing his clothes
into a bundle and cauling his faithful cat he started out. After days
and days of wauking the hungry lad finally reached Lundon.

For more, see .

And here's a bit of the introduction to the First Folio, with the repairs
mentioned above:

From the most able, to him that can but spell: There you are number'd.
We had rather you were weighd. Especially, when the fate of all Bookes
depends upon your capacities: and not of your heads alone, but of your
purses. Well! It is now publique, & you wil stand for your priviledges
wee know: to read, and censure. Do so, but buy it first. That doth best
commend a Booke, the Stationer saies. Then, how odde soever your braines
be, or your wisedomes, make your licence the same, and spare not. Judge
your sixepen'orth, your shillings worth, your five shillings worth
at a time, or higher, so you rise to the just rates, and welcome.
But, what ever you do, Buy. Censure will not drive a Trade, or make
the Jacke go. And though you be a Magistrate of wit, and sit on the
Stage at BlackFriers, or the Cockpit, to arraigne Playes dailie,
know, these Playes have had their triall alreadie, and stood out all
Appeales; and do now come forth quitted rather by a Decree of Court,
then any purchas'd Letters of commendation.

"You're a brave man! Go and break through the John Cowan
lines, and remember while you're out there jcowan@...
risking life and limb through shot and shell,
we'll be in here thinking what a sucker you are!"
--Rufus T. Firefly