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"All the world's a stage, / And the men and women merely players: / They have their exits and their entrances; / And one man in his time plays many parts." So wrote our friend Bill Shakespeare some 400 years ago in one of his most profound observations on the human condition.

Yet, we often treat this life as if we really are the people we're playing. Imagine how few troubles we might have if we remember it's only a role we are playing. All we need do is play it as best we can and then gracefully exit the stage.

This week AWAD features words from the world of theater.

deuteragonist (doo-tuh-RAG-uh-nist, dyoo-) noun

The second most important part in a play.

[From Greek deutero- (second) + agonistes (contestant, actor).]

-Anu Garg (words at wordsmith.org)

"Jennifer Paterson cut such an extraordinary figure that it was easy to overlook the fact that she was, for most of her life, a deuteragonist rather than a main player." Jonathan Meades; Before She Was Fat; The Times (London, UK); Sep 2, 2000.


The best work is done with the heart breaking, or overflowing. -Mignon McLaughlin, journalist and author (1913-1983)


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