The Thatched Visor in "Much Ado About Nothing" and Viola's Beard in "Twelfth Night" [pre-print version]
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In this article, Daalder demonstrates that Shakespeare was capable of using the word "beard" as a euphemism for pubic hair, both male and female, and this fact is relevant to our interpretation of Don Pedro's "thatched" visor. We can feel confident that, just as Shakespeare knew the common usage of the word "beard" to suggest "pubic hair," he also knew — and, interestingly, could justifiably assume that his audience knew — that the word "thatch" could carry the same sense. Furthermore, in both the "Twelfth Night" passage and that from "Much Ado" Shakespeare exploits the fact that the image of a "beard" or "thatch" can refer to the pubic hair of either sex.