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TOPIC: Hamlet - authorship, or satire?

Hamlet - authorship, or satire? 9 years 10 months ago #233

  • Willedever
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There is something going on in 'Hamlet' involving the Earl of Oxford, Edward de Vere. The question is, "what?"

Why should one think so, that there's something involving the Earl? Consider.....

Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are "red and gold." The 'Rose-' in Rosencrantz means "red," and the 'Guild-' in Guildenstern means "gold." Red and gold are also the "gules and or" which were the official colors of the Earl. Every time 'Hamlet' has been performed onstage, the audience has had the Earl's colors in front of them (without knowing it) in the persons of R & G, via the names.

The name 'Pyrrhus,' from the Greek, means "the color of fire." That color is more specifically translated as red and blond, or red and gold (since blond is often called "gold," in both prose and poetry.)

In Q2, Hamlet says "apple" while talking to R & G. There are two well-known varieties of apples, red and yellow, aka "gold."

More can be found. There may be as many as ten, perhaps even more, references to red and gold in the play, following on the prominence of R & G. And it's the Earl's official colors.

Then, there are other things.

The obscure phrase "bisson rheum" is printed oddly in Q2. "Bisson" is spelled "bison," and it's both capitalized and in italics. That is how names are printed in Q2, capitalized and in italics. In other words, "Bison" is treated as though it were a name. "Bison" is from the Latin, and means "wild ox."

In the dialogue between Hamlet and Horatio, this exchange occurs....

~~~
Horatio: ... your poor servant ever.
Hamlet: ... I'll change that name with you.
~~~

The name Hamlet actually means is "Horatio," but in the flow of the dialogue, the way it's written suggest "ever" being the name. The word "ever" occupies the spot where the name would be expected in ordinary conversation.

Anyway, there's quite a lot of that sort of thing in 'Hamlet,' indications of the Earl. It's too much to ignore, and it's too much to be accidental. But, why is it there?

The Oxfordian view would take it as hints of authorship. Perhaps it is. There's another possibility, also.

Suppose you were writing a play about a "mad prince," and you happened to know of a "madcap earl" in the vicinity. It could make a starting point. Also, some satire might be irresistible.

The indications of the Earl might be satire. Maybe. The Hamlet character might be, to some degree, a satire of the Earl.

I don't know for sure. But I am sure that those who reflexively dismiss the Earl, in any connection with the Shakespeare writings, are making a mistake. There's "something" there, in 'Hamlet.'
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Hamlet - authorship, or satire? 9 years 10 months ago #236

  • William Shakespeare
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Hmm. Yes...there's always "maybe" but, as an example, consider the significance of the number 42:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/42_(number)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Answer_to_Life%2C_the_Universe%2C_and_Everything

How many times will you find the number comes up in a meaningful fashion throughout a person's life? Some would argue that it's part of the "Great Cosmic Whatchamacallit" and some would argue that it's purely coincidence. Both sides would have roughly an equal number of observations or "facts" which support their side. The end result is that nothing is definitively proven, which never pushes it past the status of "conjecture, speculation, and theory"...however entertaining.

I always enjoy hearing of the "next, new, brilliant fact" that absolutely proves authorship by Oxford or whomever. It's amazing to see how little it takes to convince someone to accept something as fact when they are hoping it is so.
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Hamlet - authorship, or satire? 9 years 10 months ago #239

  • Willedever
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shakespeare wrote:
... How many times will you find the number comes up in a meaningful fashion throughout a person's life? Some would argue that it's part of the "Great Cosmic Whatchamacallit" and some would argue that it's purely coincidence. ...

The difference here, tho, is that 'Hamlet' wasn't written by a monkey at a typewriter, hitting keys at random. Every word in the play is there intentionally, from the author's hand, for some reason. Random chance can't apply, to something as carefully constructed as 'Hamlet.'

Henry VIII used the colors red and gold for a while, but that was a long time before 'Hamlet', and the relevance is doubtful. If I recall correctly, the Tudor colors were officially green and white. Anyway, not red and gold. The colors red and gold are definitely alluded to, in 'Hamlet', and I haven't found any other person of the times with whom they'd credibly be associated, in such a context.

The Earl was well known in the literary and theatrical communities of the time. The Earls of Oxford had long sponsored a company of actors (who could have performed in Stratford, by the way.) The 17th Earl had some 30 books or so dedicated to him, in whole or in part. He was quite generous with patronage for the arts, while his money lasted. Everybody in the literary and theatrical arts in London would have known of him, I suppose.

Then, there's a link from William Shakespeare of Stratford to the 17th Earl, via only one person, the Earl of Southampton. Venus and Adonis is dedicated to Southampton, as is Lucrece, and also, Southampton was a proposed suitor for the Earl of Oxford's daughter, at approximately the same time, the early 1590's. It raises the serious possibility that William Shakespeare not only knew of the Earl, but could have met him, through Southampton.

Take a look at the Hamlet character, in 'Hamlet', just a general overview. Hamlet gives the Queen a difficult time. He's verbally abusive to his sweetheart and prospective bride, and separates himself from her. He personally orders the killing of R & G ("red and gold") in England. And Hamlet is "mad."

The 17th Earl did cause difficulties for Queen Elizabeth, apparently. There was an infamous incident where the Earl separated from his young bride, Anne Cecil. Then, by around 1600 there wasn't much left of the Earl's colors, they were virtually "dead" in England. And the Earl was known as a "madcap" character.

Overall, the similarity is intriguing. There is a facet in which Hamlet "looks like" the Earl, in a way. But it isn't complimentary. It looks more like elements of satire, at least where those similarities are concerned.
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Hamlet - authorship, or satire? 9 years 3 weeks ago #1373

  • Mike thomas
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Hi there Willedever

Have you ever noticed how much the world seems to be in a dream? There was a time, before the advent of the web etc, when minds were thirsty for debating such issues. Alas no longer. Anyway there are a few inquisitive brains left in the world, and I'm glad to see you are such a one.

To your post: I can see your point, and have followed your argument through, and I can understand that from where you are, it might seem like William Shakespeare knew the Earl of Oxford. But proof is not easy, indeed finding proof is almost impossible.

Out of interest, here's a little trick involving the two characters Francisco and Barnardo. They are the two guards who open the play, and we know that although Francisco is on guard duty, Barnaordo makes the challenge etc. In other words, right at the very first line something is confused or mixed up. The confusion will continue in the character of Hamlet throughout the play.

So, here's the tricK

The two names FRANCISCO and BARNARDO make FRANCIS BACON ROARD.


The word roar'd is a valid spelling.

This points to different plays in which something roars: e.g. Midsomer's Nights Dream and the lion, and also Julius Caesar, and a roaring river. But all that's another, similar trick, but far too complex a description for here.

The letters ROARD also make something else: ADO RR where ADO refers to the play and RR is an alpha-numeric reference (17 17) to dialogue line numbers, and letter counts in the first line of dialogue of Much ado, e.g:

Leonato. I learne in this Letter, ....... where we meet a man who roars, and the letter (actually 2 letters) in question is T.

I could go on to show that all the above is not coincidence, and show that your belief concernind Oxford and Southampton are correct, but a little misguided, but you, like me, are convinced of your particular truth about Shakespeare.

regards
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