Cuffa's, Godiva',Shakespeare's


Senior Member
The Luftwaffe had destroyed old Coventry - Cuffa's, Godiva's,Shakespeare's- as surely as the RAF would remove the life, the guts of German history. (A.N. Wilson After the Victorians

Q:Cuffa's, Godiva',Shakespeare's refer to the famous personages's old residences in Coventry (close to Shakespeare's hometow)?
  • Egmont

    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    I agree, though they might also have been restaurants. In any case, they were well-known places of business in Coventry that were destroyed by German bombs in World War II. They are not the places where those people lived: Shakespeare lived in Avon and spent time in London. Lady Godiva, while she was from Coventry, would have lived in her husband's palace. It surely no longer existed in 1940, since she died around 1070. Cuffa is not a well-known historical person. We can assume he owned the establishment called Cuffa's - if not in 1940, then when it was founded, whenever that way. His home would not have been famous, not worth mentioning in the book.


    Senior Member
    USA - English
    I expect they are bars or theatres.
    I agree, though they might also have been restaurants.
    Oh, for heaven's sake!!! I expect nothing of the kind. "Cuffa" (or "Coffa") is a possible legendary person after whom Coventry might have been named. Lady Godiva (as noted) was a well-documented historical personage who is the subject of a legend connected with Coventry. Shakespeare was born in Warwickshire and Coventry was historically in the same county, less than 20 miles away. This sentence has nothing to do with bars or restaurants or theaters. It is entirely a reference to historical medieval Coventry, and the historical people who would have known it.


    Senior Member
    British English (Sussex)
    I agree with GWB and Barque as well, of course.:D

    The possessives stand for Cuffa's Coventry, Godiva's Coventry, Shakespeare's Coventry. They were all elements of "old Coventry".

    Thomas Tompion

    Senior Member
    English - England
    I wonder if A.N.Wilson really made that mistake. The name Coventry is thought to come from Cofa's tree or Coffa's tree, though nothing is known, it seems, of this Cofa.

    Is that u there in your copy, ShareisBeauty? I couldn't find the quote online.

    The theory that Connecticut is named after Cofa is without foundation, I believe.
    Last edited:

    suzi br

    Senior Member
    English / England
    Yes, the sentence is about “old Coventry” in the sense that those different individuals, from different periods, would have known it. Not literally their old homes.

    There were certainly pubs with 2 of those names in the 70s when I lived in Coventry: Godiva and Shakespeare. Maybe always have been. But it’s not the point here!
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