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Internet Shakespeare Editions

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The fish market

Strict laws were passed in Shakespeare's early youth requiring everyone to eat fish in Lent, on Fridays, and on Wednesdays. The laws had no religious rationale: they were designed to keep the navy strong

by providing enough jobs for sailors.

Oysters, oysters, threepence a peck at Bridewell dock, new wallfleet oysters.
New cockles, new great cockles. New great sprats, new. New haddocks, new. New thornbacks new.
(Orlando Gibbons, "Street Cries")

Could eating meat be a crime?.