I’m back, Dear Followers, and ready to question the dogma of Shakespeare, again!
Today, I’d like to share a bit of the recent hypocrisy promoted by orthodox Shakespeare scholars in the mainstream media. None of this, however, is breaking news to many of my Facebook friends.
At the beginning of the week, on the ABC News Sunday Spotlight, viewers got a glimpse into the underground vault of the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, D.C. where 82 copies of the 233 rare, remaining copies of the First Folio are housed.
The online version of ABC’s story correctly mentions that this collection of priceless plays “dates back to 1623, seven years after [William Shakespeare’s] death.” (http://tinyurl.com/pofcclh)
Yet, just a few days later, in Ask History, a blog sponsored by “History” Channel (yeah, you know the reason for those air quotes), the anonymous blogger declares that Edward de Vere, the 17th Earl of Oxford, could not be the true author of the works attributed to Shakespeare because
“…Oxford died in 1604, and some of Shakespeare’s greatest plays (including “King Lear,” “The Tempest” and “Macbeth”) were published after that date.” (http://tinyurl.com/nhbdmog)
So, these people are saying that the grain-hoarding merchant from Stratford-Upon-Avon, the man who is traditionally regarded as the one true Shakespeare, could have his alleged works published posthumously but that the same could not possibly be true of Oxford, who was once recognized by members of the Royal Court as Queen Elizabeth’s favorite earl and was, as per Ask History,
“…highly educated, trained as a lawyer and was known to have traveled to many of the exact places featured in Shakespeare’s plays.”
But wait, there’s more! While referencing the famous Droeshout engraving from the First Folio’s title page, Michael Witmore, Director of the Folger Shakespeare Library, produces this sparkly quote:
“People who knew him, worked with him said he looked like this…This is the picture that we think really captures the man, and this is the picture you see everywhere. This is his headshot.”
Really? Who might those people be? And, to me, that so-called “headshot” looks more like a masked figure with a dislocated shoulder!
There’s just one more thing I need to get off my chest.
When you scroll to the comments at the bottom of ABC’s “A Rare Look at Shakespeare’s First Edition at DC’s Folger Library,” you will see one lonely comment by someone named “Tom” who writes:
“A Shakespeare autograph would be worth a fortune. I’ve heard there is no known example. Correction; One article I found said there were six known.”
I attempted to reply to his comment with:
Wait…are we living in modern America, or Elizabethan England?