An Englishman In Paris: Shakespeare & Company

by Adlay Almeida September 01, 2016 0 Comments

Shakespeare and Company Victor Hugo The Hunchback of Notre-Dame

After traveling to several countries every year for the past six years I’ve begun to lose track of where I’ve been and when. Perchance it has nothing to do with quantity and it is simply the physical manifestation of the aging process...I certainly hope not. But in the midst of so much variety there are certain locales that burn an image into my psyche, residing there forever. This is not merely poetic, it is simply the truth.

Shakespeare and Company is one of those places. Sitting unassumingly and silently on the Seine’s Left Bank, it is easy to miss amidst the bustle and tussle of the Parisian life; but there it stands on the shadows of Notre-Dame, its legendary doors awaiting patiently for the intrepid traveler to squeeze by.

Shakespeare and Company Paris Bookstore

As you approach Shakespeare and Company looks like any other bookstore; but goodness would you do yourself a disfavor if you allowed first impressions to color your choices, because once you step inside this magical store you will never be the same. As a lover of literature you have probably day-dreamed of a place where books abound, where looking in all directions yields a finely curated find, where the smell of old books is overpowering and someone plays a Chopin etude while you browse in a trance-like ecstasy. Well, fantasize no longer friends, because Shakespeare and Company is precisely that place.

I love that little store so much. If it were my child I would bake it cookies and would lull it to sleep with a Jules Verne story. As parents strangely utter when in the presence of a cute toddler, this bookstore is so beautiful I could eat it, whatever that means.

There are books of all sizes and prices. There are authors you’ve never heard of. The first floor is a maze of newly printed versions, an eclectic collection covering the entire gamut of literary genres. The second floor, however, is what sets this place apart. Ascending the wooden, creaking stairs is like dying and scaling Olympus, except that instead of greeting the Greek gods we are met with a stoic collection of discolored and aromatic books amidst old typewriters and scattered notes. Whatever you relate to reading is found in this improvised attic. Sofas to sit and relax, a piano for the musically inclined, an old bed that once housed worn down travelers and the homeless, even an E. M. Foster-like room with a view, where curious masses collect to discuss stories and poetry and to sometimes listen to the reassuring voice of a confident reader. If you can imagine it, Shakespeare and Company has it.

Books I bought at Shakespeare & Company Paris Bookstore

I often wish we had places like Shakespeare and Company in my city, where people would gather to learn and chat and to discuss topics ranging from Mathematics to Philosophy; where reading transcends mere action and becomes one of the highest pleasures attainable, the key to an eternity of fulfillment and spectacular realizations.

Wishful thinking, I know. Oh well. Honey! Pack the bags, I think I’m missing Paris.

Adlay Almeida
Adlay Almeida


Sizing Chart
Literary T-shirt Sizing Chart

Chest (A) 30.5 in
32.5 in
82.5 cm
34.5 in
87.6 cm
36.5 in
92.7 cm
39.5 in
100.3 cm
42.5 in
108 cm
Length (B) 24.75 in
63 cm
25.5 in
64.8 cm
26 in
66 cm
26.5 in
67.3 cm
27.25 in
69.2 cm
28 in
71.1 cm

Chest (C) 38 in
96.5 cm
41 in
104.1 cm
44 in
111.8 cm
48 in
121.9 cm
52 in
132.1 cm
56 in
142.2 cm
Length (D) 28 in
71.1 cm
29 in
73.6 cm
30 in
76.2 cm
31 in
78.7 cm
32 in
81.3 cm
33 in
83.8 cm

Chest (E) 37 in
94 cm
40 in
101.6 cm
43 in
109.2 cm
47 in
119.4 cm
51 in
129.5 cm
Length (F) 28 in
71.1 cm
29 in
73.6 cm
30 in
76.2 cm
31 in
78.7 cm
32 in
81.3 cm
Sleeve Length 26.0in
66 cm
67.3 cm
27.0 in
68.6 cm
27.5 in
70 cm
28 in
71.1 cm

Measurement Notes:
Chest is measured 1" below armhole.
Body length in the front from highest point of shoulder.
Sleeve length from shoulder edge