Tuesday, January 29, 2008

De Vere, There and Everywhere

I've just read Bill Bryson's pretty decent short biography of Shakespeare, which prompted this thought.

Claiming that Edward de Vere, 17th Earl of Oxford, wrote the Shakespeare plays is akin to suggesting that Brian Jones wrote all of the Beatles hits, in that
  • he was dead while they were still releasing new work
  • his own surviving work shows he was nowhere near as talented as the writers of the Beatles' hits
  • no-one at the time ever linked him to the Beatles works
  • lots of people at the time were certain the Beatles wrote their own songs
  • and he never claimed that he wrote any such thing.
Even in a world where conspiracy theories are in vogue as never before, the idea is totally preposterous.

And de Vere is generally accepted as the best possible alternative author of Shakespeare's plays...

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