1202

Nothing I said could motivate my sons to love Latin at school, not even the fact Latin once saved Ben Jonson’s life.  In 1598 Jonson killed fellow actor Gabriel Spencer in a duel, though Jonson claimed Spencer had the longer sword “by ten inches.”  Jonson pleaded “benefit of clergy.”   His ability to read & write Latin saved him from the gallows but  “T” for Tyburn (the gallows site) was branded on his thumb.