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Bacon Verses Shakespeare Round two

 
 
Reply Wed 10 Jul, 2013 03:02 pm
The following are among the many outstanding writers, thinkers, actors, directors and statesmen of the past who have expressed doubt that Mr. “Shakspeare” wrote the works of William Shakespeare:

Of the 2616 signatures, these are the most revealing

Mark Twain
Henry James
Walt Whitman
Charles Dickens
Ralph Waldo Emerson
Orson Welles
Leslie Howard
Tyrone Guthrie
Charlie Chaplin
Sir John Gielgud
William James
Sigmund Freud
Clifton Fadiman
John Galsworthy
Mortimer J. Adler
Paul H. Nitze
Lord Palmerston
William Y. Elliott
Harry A. Blackmun
Lewis F. Powell, Jr.
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Type: Discussion • Score: 8 • Views: 3,351 • Replies: 46

 
Lordyaswas
 
  1  
Reply Wed 10 Jul, 2013 03:06 pm
@Rickoshay75,
Read Bill Bryson's book on old Willy boy, and then get back to us if you still think bacon did the sizzling.
Setanta
 
  2  
Reply Wed 10 Jul, 2013 03:08 pm
Bryson is an ignorant hack. There's no doubt about it, bacon, even those nasty bacon rashers they have in old Angle-land, are far superior to any play-writing. Try eating a play with your eggs tomorrow morning.
0 Replies
 
Rickoshay75
 
  1  
Reply Wed 10 Jul, 2013 03:31 pm
@Lordyaswas,
It's hard to poo poo those well known luminaries, all of which I admire and respect.
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  2  
Reply Wed 10 Jul, 2013 03:36 pm
I'll bet ya by god Mark Twain preferred bacon to plays.
0 Replies
 
Frank Apisa
 
  1  
Reply Wed 10 Jul, 2013 04:07 pm
@Rickoshay75,
My response would be that I do not know if Shakespeare wrote the plays...or was just the guy given credit for the various reasons being floated here.

Humans love a conspiracy...and the nay-sayers may be just doing what humans do in these kinds of situations.

I do not think there will ever be enough evidence to result in a definitive conclusion to the question.

Unless it can be shown that it is unreasonable to assume Shakespeare wrote the stuff...I think we should go with "he wrote it."

If he, in fact, did write it...taking the credit away from him because of speculation like has been presented over the years seems a great injustice. Giving him credit if he doesn't deserve it...does no one any harm. If the work is the product of someone else who had reasons for denying responsibility...and offering credit to Shakespeare, why not just go along with that person's wishes?
0 Replies
 
Lustig Andrei
 
  1  
Reply Wed 10 Jul, 2013 05:31 pm
OK, I'll be serious just this one time.

I've read quite a bit on the subject and have yet to see one shred of admissible evidence that anyone other than William Shakespeare of Stratford-upon-Avon wrote the works which bear his name. Most of the nay-sayers are people who just can't stand to admit that the son of a glover with no more than a village school education could have penned works of everlasting beauty and value. Examined closely, hardly any of their arguments hold any water at all.

For example, there's always the tired old claim that a "mere lowly actor" like Shakespeare could not have known the intricacies of the royal court to write some of his scenes. Well, who says those scenes are accurate at all? Shakespeare was certainly more familiar with doings at the Court of St. James than the average man on the street who attended the plays, having given any number of performances at that court with Queen Elizabeth I (and later, of course, King James I) in attendance. Beyond that, there's no reason to assume he was privy to secret intrigues except as he himself might have become involved in them. (George Bernard Shaw imagines Mary Fitton, a lady in waiting to QE I, as being the 'Dark Lady' of Shakespeare's sonnets and, hence, possibly his inamorata at court. There is absolutely no evidence for this whatever and anyone who tries to echo Shaw's theory runs the risk of being accused of plagiaristic usurpation of an indefensible theme. That has happened, btw, to an author who assumed that Shaw's flight of fancy reflected accurate history.)

There are those, too, who echo Ben Jonson's libelous claim (which was intended as part of a compliment to the Bard) that Shakespeare knew "little Latin and less Greek." That claim is not only libelous, it is spurious and these days is made generally by peole who have little or no knowledge of the carricula in those "village schools" which were administered by the Church of England. Graduating from the school at Strtford, Shakespeare would have had to be quite fluent in both Latin and Greek to earn a diploma. There is no reason to assume that he wasn't so. But if, for the sake of argument, we accept Jonson's criticism as valid -- so what? Where in the plays need he display any more knowledge of either of the ancient languages than what any first-year Latin student would know? I can understand every Latin reference in Shakespeare's plays and I have taken exatly one course in first-year Latin. You don't need a dictionary to know what Et tu, Brute? means.

As for that impressive list of names that you've posted above, Rick, it is completely meaningless. Mark Twain was also a communicant of the Episcopal Church. Am I to believe everything he may or may not have believed? John Gielgud, for all I know, might have been a closet Scientologist. The point is that these are the personal beliefs and convictions of some people who may well have other convictions I wouldn't agree with either. (In the case of Mark Twain, btw, I'm not sure just how serious he was; it sounds like something he might have thrown out at ssome point and regretted having said later.) None of the people on your list is a particularly noted Shakespearean scholar. Certainly not the James boys, William and Henry. Or Jesse and Frank, for that matter. Smile

In the final analysis, the only reason to even question the authorship of the plays is that it's an academic road to recognition as a "deep thinker" and "researcher." This is revisionist history at its most blatantly worst, academics struggling desperately to find something attention-getting to write popular books about. The paucity of verifyable documentation from the Elizabethan and Jacobean periods makes this sort of game playing fairly easy. Just find a letter that Lord Huffenpuff wrote to the Earl of Nunsuch in 1583 wherein he uses the expression, "...and to thineown self be true..." and -- aha! -- we have verification that his Lordship used the phrase long before it was put into the mouth of Polonius in Hamlet. Hence, QED. Lord Whozis wrote the plays that S. Claimed credit for.

And if you think that's strong circumstantial evidence, I certainly don't want you on any jury where I'm the defendant.


edgarblythe
 
  2  
Reply Wed 10 Jul, 2013 06:00 pm
Dickens was more ham than bacon.
Lustig Andrei
 
  1  
Reply Wed 10 Jul, 2013 06:08 pm
@edgarblythe,
I'll have some eggs with either one, please. Over easy.
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Thu 11 Jul, 2013 05:15 am
@Lustig Andrei,
IMO Francis Bacon was more hype than actual talent. His use of the color red, as an ongoing signature certainly could wear out ones interest whenever youd see a show of his. Of course that all IMHO
contrex
 
  1  
Reply Thu 11 Jul, 2013 09:00 am
I would not take any notice of someone's opinion about literature if they write "verses" in a title when "versus" is the proper word.

I wonder if it can be proved that Bacon met the Earl Of Sandwich one morning over breakfast?

Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Thu 11 Jul, 2013 09:04 am
@contrex,
That was a true abomination of a joke . . . i salute you.
contrex
 
  1  
Reply Thu 11 Jul, 2013 09:25 am
@Setanta,
Setanta wrote:

That was a true abomination of a joke . . . i salute you.


It was inspired by an incident in one of the "William" books by Richmal Crompton that I read as a child. The eponymous hero had endured a lesson about Bacon and Shakespeare and afterwards described the former as "a bloke called Ham, or Chops, or something like that".
0 Replies
 
Lustig Andrei
 
  1  
Reply Thu 11 Jul, 2013 10:26 am
@contrex,
Verses? That's nothing. In another thread on a similar subject this same poster refers to a 'Frances Bacon.' I mentioned that Ben Jonson was probably sweet on her.
0 Replies
 
Debacle
 
  2  
Reply Thu 11 Jul, 2013 11:19 am
I suppose it's possible the works were written by a person, or persons, who occupied Shakespeare's first best bed.


Anne Hathaway
by Carol Ann Duffy from The World's Wife

Item I gyve unto my wife my second best bed ...'
(from Shakespeare's will)

The bed we loved in was a spinning world
of forests, castles, torchlight, clifftops, seas
where we would dive for pearls. My lover's words
were shooting stars which fell to earth as kisses
on these lips; my body now a softer rhyme
to his, now echo, assonance; his touch
a verb dancing in the centre of a noun.
Some nights, I dreamed he'd written me, the bed
a page beneath his writer's hands. Romance
and drama played by touch, by scent, by taste.
In the other bed, the best, our guests dozed on,
dribbling their prose. My living laughing love -
I hold him in the casket of my widow's head
as he held me upon that next best bed.


Rickoshay75
 
  1  
Reply Thu 11 Jul, 2013 12:04 pm
@farmerman,
IMO Francis Bacon was more hype than actual talent. His use of the color red, as an ongoing signature certainly could wear out ones interest whenever you'd see a show of his. Of course that all IMHO >>

All characteristics of a genius.

You can be sure that all the luminaries on the exclusive list, had doubts at first, but after further investigation, introspection, and logical reasoning, they had enough doubt to cause a hung jury.

0 Replies
 
Rickoshay75
 
  1  
Reply Thu 11 Jul, 2013 12:20 pm
@Debacle,
Item I gyve unto my wife my second best bed ...'
(from Shakespeare's will)

The bed we loved in was a spinning world
of forests, castles, torchlight, clifftops, seas
where we would dive for pearls. My lover's words
were shooting stars which fell to earth as kisses
on these lips; my body now a softer rhyme
to his, now echo, assonance; his touch
a verb dancing in the centre of a noun.
Some nights, I dreamed he'd written me, the bed
a page beneath his writer's hands. Romance
and drama played by touch, by scent, by taste.
In the other bed, the best, our guests dozed on,
dribbling their prose. My living laughing love -
I hold him in the casket of my widow's head
as he held me upon that next best bed.>>

Shakespeare, Bacon's pen name could be the answer. Nothing new here. Mark Twain was actually Samuel Clements, and who knows how many other writers used legal pen names?
JTT
 
  1  
Reply Fri 12 Jul, 2013 10:37 pm
@Lustig Andrei,
Quote:
I've read quite a bit on the subject and have yet to see one shred of admissible evidence that anyone other than William Shakespeare of Stratford-upon-Avon wrote the works which bear his name. Most of the nay-sayers are people who just can't stand to admit that the son of a glover with no more than a village school education could have penned works of everlasting beauty and value. Examined closely, hardly any of their arguments hold any water at all.


You're trying to suggest to us that you have read even a handful of those 2616 or whatever, Merry.
0 Replies
 
contrex
 
  1  
Reply Sat 13 Jul, 2013 12:51 am
@Rickoshay75,
Rickoshay75 wrote:
Mark Twain was actually Samuel Clements

Did anyone tell Samuel Clemens about this? Was he related to the well known cosmologist and astrophysicist Steven Hawkins?
Lustig Andrei
 
  1  
Reply Sat 13 Jul, 2013 01:23 am
@contrex,
Let's leave Pope Clement the Cosmetician out of this, please.
0 Replies
 
 

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