Reply Thu 6 May, 2010 08:29 pm
There has probably been a discussion along these lines on this forum already but I was wondering how many of you have an opinion on whether Shakespeare wrote Shakespeare.

In January, I reread Will in the World: How Shakespeare BEcame Shakespeare by Stephen Greenblatt. Greenblatt is not an anti-Avonian. To him, The Bard is Will O' Stratford.

Walked by a bookstore this afternoon and saw Shakespeare's Lost Kingdom: The True History of Shakespeare and Elizabeth by Charles Beauclerk.
Beauclerk is descended from William DeVere and he seems academically suspect but I found I could not resist.

Haven't begun reading yet . . . am saving it for next week.

I think I was first introduced to the Anti-Avonians when John Simon spoke at my college.
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Joe Nation
 
  1  
Reply Fri 7 May, 2010 06:13 am
It is the most fun some English Language and Literature scholars ever have.
It is the most important unimportant subject, a deep meaningful exercise which, if it is ever completely solved, won't change a word of the actual works.

Joe(the play IS the thing.)Nation
plainoldme
 
  2  
Reply Fri 7 May, 2010 08:34 am
@Joe Nation,
I chuckled to myself over your phrase, "the most important unimportant subject." That is so true! There are just some things that are soooo fascinating, they can not be ignored. Do they matter? Deep inside, they do.
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Joe Nation
 
  1  
Reply Fri 7 May, 2010 09:04 am
Speaking of important unimportant things, my head is full of them.

The other day I got to wondering about the words Rhythm and Rhyme. What odd spelling!? Not Rithem and Rime? A silent second letter 'H' ? Huh.

And what other English words start with Rhy? (This all started, of course, with a Scrabble game.) Turns out I was right to be suspicious.
Rhythm comes from Greek. (Rhythmos == beat, tempo)
Rhyme does not. It's Middle English from the word Rime, meaning to put in a row. It didn't start to be spelled RHYme until the 1700s when it was mistakenly compared and conjoined with it's Rhythmic cousin.

Most of the other English with RHY to start are related to Rhythm (Rhythmic .. .)
then there is this:


rhyacotriton

It's a kind of salamander.
(!!?!)
I'll be waiting to hear what you think about what Earl wrote what.


Oh, and RIME is still around, you know it, I'm sure, it's the ice coating that forms on my beer glass when I wet it and stick it in the freezer for while.

Joe(Frosty)Nation

saab
 
  2  
Reply Fri 7 May, 2010 09:28 am
@Joe Nation,
Rime sounds as if it from Scandinavia:
Danish for rhiming is rime
Swedish is rimma
talk72000
 
  1  
Reply Fri 7 May, 2010 01:48 pm
@plainoldme,
There was an article in a newsparer that speculated on names given to people like cruikshanks by the Lords as the population grew and first names were running out to properly identify people. These Lords had no respect for the commoners. Whatever came handy was used. If he limped he was called 'crooked leg': 'cruik' means crooked and 'shanks' mean leg. A mastubator was called Shake Speare. Thus the Lords wrote Shakespeare.
joefromchicago
 
  2  
Reply Fri 7 May, 2010 02:19 pm
@talk72000,
I find it difficult to grasp the profound stupidity of what you've just posted.
saab
 
  1  
Reply Fri 7 May, 2010 02:26 pm
@talk72000,
Shakespeare means a confrontational or argumentative person.
Comes from schakken which means to brandish.
Spear
talk72000
 
  1  
Reply Fri 7 May, 2010 02:36 pm
@joefromchicago,
I read this from a newspaper article. Whether it was jokular or serious one can only speculate.
talk72000
 
  1  
Reply Fri 7 May, 2010 02:37 pm
@saab,
Yes, I can see the warlike implications of the name 'shake the spear' to frighten the enemy like saber rattling.
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joefromchicago
 
  1  
Reply Fri 7 May, 2010 03:47 pm
@talk72000,
talk72000 wrote:

I read this from a newspaper article. Whether it was jokular or serious one can only speculate.

No need for speculation. It was quite clearly idiotic.
talk72000
 
  1  
Reply Fri 7 May, 2010 07:19 pm
@joefromchicago,
Here is the article:

http://communities.canada.com/vancouversun/blogs/scienceinbc/archive/2007/11/03/10-surnames-that-began-as-insults-no-1-shakespeare.aspx
plainoldme
 
  1  
Reply Fri 7 May, 2010 08:00 pm
I started reading the new book. Ah, yes! While there is a combination of brilliant literary analysis, there is also a great deal of over the top speculation.

talk72000
 
  0  
Reply Fri 7 May, 2010 08:06 pm
@plainoldme,
Don't forget in those days kingdoms were quite small. The British Isles had a population of only 2 million at the time of Shakespeare. Kings were more like warlords so one could write about them like folklore. But we look back with our environment and can't imagine someone writing about such momentous events
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saab
 
  1  
Reply Sat 8 May, 2010 03:12 am
Even though there were only 2 million people the kings did not give the last names to people. The names develope in the village.
Say there are 3boys by the name of John. One is William`s son, so he got to be Williamson. Two have a father whose name is Jack. One gets to be Jackson and the the one is not a blonde but rather darkhaired. So he will be Brown to be different from John Jackson. It took some time until these names were inherited. John Jackson might become a miller so then he got to be John the Miller - John Miller. Also place names could be used. John from the wood - gets to be John Wood.
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Joe Nation
 
  1  
Reply Sat 8 May, 2010 04:51 am
@saab,
Ya, saab, the dictionary often says ME (Middle English) without ever mentioning the Norse word which preceded it.
Joe(Those Englanders really liked taking words from those guys.)Nation
0 Replies
 
saab
 
  1  
Reply Sat 8 May, 2010 06:29 am
@talk72000,
Armand
It is a French name, which comes from the German name Hermann.
This name is put together of two words. Heer which means army and man.
The army man.
0 Replies
 
plainoldme
 
  1  
Reply Sat 8 May, 2010 12:45 pm
Beauclerk, the author of Shakespeare's Lost Kingdom, makes much early on about how Shakespeare's own name was originally spelled in documents with a hyphen and insists that is a sign the name is a pseudonym. Beauclerk makes much of how the Shakespeare family spelled its surname. However, in other parts of the book (I have only read 50 pages) he acknowledges that spelling was not standardized and that words had slightly different meanings then.

BEauclerk claims descent from Edward De Vere, the earl of Oxford, whom he claims wrote Shakespeare. Beauclerk suggests that this William was the bastard son of Elizabeth, who he claims was a sham virgin, and CAtherine Parr's husband after the death of Henry VIII, Lord Admiral Thomas Seymour.

That Seymour had designs on the teenaged stepdaughter of his wife is well documented. That Catherine was a combination of loving and guiding stepmother and a participant in weird games involving her teenaged ward is also well known. The couple together would tickle the girl and, on one occasion, CAtherine held Elizabeth while Thomas cut up her dress.

We know that Catherine had Elizabeth removed from her household in May 1548 after discovering her in the arms of her husband. At the time, Beauclerk's ancester John, father of record of Edward, was in trouble with the Lord Protector Somerset who extorted some of de Vere's lands although no one knows why.

This John, at the time, was a widower, engaged to marry a woman on 2 August 1548, who was a servant of his daughter by his first wife. However, on 1 August 1548, he married another woman! She allegedly is the mother of Edward, for whom there is no record of his birth . . . just as there is no record for the birth of William Shakespeare.

Beauclerk then suggests that Edward is the son of Elizabeth and Thomas Seymour, a royal changling. If that sounds far fetched to you, it does to me as well.

He also suggests that all male characters in the plays of Shakespeare are different versions of Hamlet and that all are therefore versions of the author, William de Vere. He also suggests that all the female characters are Elizabeth.

He cites a couple of lines from the Sonnets to support the idea of De Vere using an alias and also mentions the coat of arms that John Shakespeare (it does not help that people used very few names then), father of William, applied for bore the motto, "Non sanz droight," or Not Without Right. To Beauclerk, this motto relates to Truth which he claims in the meaning of de Vere. However, he also writes that the Viking derived Veres once lived in the village of Ver in France while the name could be derived from the Dutch village of Veere which means feather or quill.

In other words, Beauclerk accepts one standard of proof when it makes his point but another when it doesn't it.
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plainoldme
 
  2  
Reply Sat 8 May, 2010 12:48 pm
I always thought that Elizabeth never married because she came from one the original dysfunctional family. Considering what her father did to his wives, including beheading her own mother when she was just three, why would she want to become a wife?

Furthermore, her family is Welsh and there is the Celtic tradition of the Sovereignty Goddess who grants the king sovereignty or the right to rule, largely by either giving him a cup (the Grail) or by marrying him. That myth had to have been alive to Elizabeth. Why would she act as a sovereignty goddess to a man, giving him rule over her kingdom?
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plainoldme
 
  1  
Reply Tue 11 May, 2010 12:34 pm
Continuing to read Shakespeare's Lost Kingdom.

Did some independent research and found a survey which discovered that 40% of the respondents were convinced that someone else used the name Shakespeare to write the plays.

My feeling was that the anti-Avonian theories are an expression of mistrust toward the individual.

Discovered just how many candidates for the authorship of S's plays there are.

Truthfully, although de Vere and a woman musician named Amelia Johnson Willoughby Lanyer are better candidates than most . . . I'll stick with Avonian Willy.
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