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Monday, March 31, 2008

How dumb are the British?

If you thought Americans were dumb, then consider this: a third of Brits don't know Shakespeare wrote plays - and many of them think he was King of England.

A new survey also reveals that 25% didn't realise John Keats was a poet, with some saying his famous Odes were written by Robbie Williams.

The Brits ignorance about famous authors was revealed in a poll of 3,000 people. Interestingly, some 70% have never written a poem to a loved one, though two thirds would like to receive one.

Poet laureate Andrew Motion, 55, said: "Although most people accept that poetry has a vital role in personal as well as national life, these findings show a depressing level of ignorance. "The good news is that 61% said they would like to have poetry play a role in their lives - in which case we hope they might also want to write one."

A cruise firm is offering a seven-night holiday to the writer of the best poem, chosen by Andrew. The framed work will be displayed on board.

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