…we seem to track the same columns. I can’t help myself. Must reply!
The last column I was at was a frenzied deniers’ fest of Baconians and Marlovians and Oxfordians all scrambling for the attention their cause can get. More power to ya.
But one of you please come up with some convincing proof. BTW there are other scholars and biographers that have written on Bacon, Marlowe and Oxford that don’t speculate their authorship of Shakespeare.
Heward et al (and that guy who keeps trying to sell the sonnet book by the Globe actor) You sell the Orksfordian schlock and me rudely contradicts, in favour of the true, acknowledged and veritable author (which word as you know was unknown in his day) one William Shagsbirds of Stratters on Avon.
First off it ain’t personal. I rebutt you so as to reach those others whose minds are undecided. To whom I say, Before they suck you in to clicking that link, buyer beware. Caveat emptor!
They have slick sellers of merchandise designed to convince. There is their own rhetoric and historically incorrect shorthand you must believe to fully be accepted into the fold. Their mantra is Shakespeare of Stratford was a dupe.
Doubt him, doubt him, Doubt!
(LONG RAMBLING REPLY follows, which they’ve learned to keep short, unless you ire them. Orksfordians bite, SHakespeareans hug).
History verifies Stratford Billy as having contact with the worlds of Patrons, Print, Public, Private, and Court theatre.
The only bit we don’t have proven to your satisfaction is writing. That could be because it was a private thing. But scholars have found evidence of collaboration with other playwrights. But I assume his Sonnets and narrative poems and epitaphs are his alone.
We can indeed only conjecture that a guy who worked for the leading theatre company of the day, who saw his 2 best selling narrative poems to and through the press (largely because of a schoolmate from Stratford that helped him) was actually selling his own works.
He also worked alongside the popular star of Eliza’s twilight years, Richard Burbage, son of James, founder the first PUBLIC theatre. To you, all these people are Liars all.
Patrons (of which your guy is the uber-patron, as you well know) were found at Court, which as in Timon of Athens was a cut-throat place. But still poets and painters and musicians flourished. To get noticed you had to be good. Or one of the in-crowd, which we know you will be very happy to tell us of how your man was into Elizabeth the Virgin Queen.
(Or not, as your dirty laundry will be aired after some 400 odd years of polite silence. And that in a film to be released next year. The force grows strong within them).
See, I actually like Oxford as prototype for many of these characters, which you too have correctly identified as distinct from Snug and Snout and Francis, and again identified as emanating from your man’s emotional DNA, which latterly are your Lord’s creations too. How well he knew and understood and captured the Elizabethan middle classes in The Merry Wives of Windsor!
Now why should my man not have the same capacity for empathy and insight that yours does?
Ah but our man travelled! And look at how many of his plays are set in Italy! And how little of that country’s flora and fauna is in the imagination of Shakespeare.
Your man was no stranger to gossip. And Elizabethan London loved to gossip. Your man is of the right station and right character to be Shakespeare. We want him to be for your sake. And the smug factor of being right!
This Shakespeare of Stratford is a man for whom there is absolutely nothing to discredit him in favour of authorship except for him being in the right place at the right time.
For you as Oxenforde’s foil (and yes that’s how Teddy spelt his name most of the time. And yes, names as you know were subject to many varied spellings).
Shakespeare is the true author; if you accept neither he nor his friends and fellowes of 25 years standing on the same stage and wings lied when they quoted about him in his First Folio (Just how did Oxford manage that publication, having been dead some 19 years). A why should they lie?
You deny the man from Stratford his wit, for which he is famed. Just what difference does it make to read Shakespeare’s words, be he Oxford or Stratfrodian slip. None. Lear is no less powerful. Nor Timon so unforgiving. Nor Macduff’s anguish any less real. If that’s what the product of reading is? Reality.
I read to escape and expand myself beyond and away from my self. I assume Shakespeare did the same thing. Schoenbaum noted this phenomenon in his book SH’s Lives.
Your man was being watched a lot of the time. His peers, his servants, his men and boys, his enemies; of which he made more than a few.
My man lived a life where no one saw him but who he choose to see and hear. No man had his allegiance and I can imagine there to be quite a bit of freedom in that.
Time and freedom enough to write maybe 2 to 3 plays a year given time to research and follow the whims of the stage and the public’s desire as well as his own instinct. Time to act on the stage too. There were many that vied for those roles.
The reality that it’s your guy so does not impress me and you know too that your guy is as much a composite as my Shakespeare is. At least my Shakespeare is built up of evidence that historians use for all people.
The answer to the meagre historical evidence we have for Shakespeare is given. We know. We all know. Why do you have to nullify the Stratford guy?
Because he is the mainstay for your argument. Without him, no way those plays would have been played on the stage. All conspiracists (look it up in the dictionary it is the right word) need William Shakspere of Stratford.
But does he need them? Not really. If you admit he may have, probably did have, some wit.