Linguistics and Literature Studies Vol. 4(2), pp. 124 - 128
DOI: 10.13189/lls.2016.040204
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Writing the Shakespeare Mask: The Novelist's Choices


Newton Frohlich *
Independent Researcher, USA

ABSTRACT

The authorship of the works of Shakespeare by the glover from Stratfiord-on-Avon has been considered a myth almost from its inception. No less than Charles Dickins, Mark Twain, Henry and William James, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Herman Melville, Walt Whitman, Royal Shakespeare Company actors John Gielgud, Derek Jacobi, Jeremy Irons, and Michael York, British Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli, five United States Supreme Court Justices, and thousands who signed a Declaration of Doubt About Will circulating the World-Wide Web have attested to their doubts. In response to the request by his publisher, author Newton Frohlich, commencing research connected with a sequel to his novel about Columbus, came across clues to the authorship of the works of Shakespeare. The man now considered by many to be the author of the works of Shakespeare is Edward de Vere, the 17th Earl of Oxford, the subject of Mr. Frohlich's new historical novel, The Shakespeare Mask. * Since the works of Shakespeare are considered some of the most sophisticated works of literature in the English language, it is important to know that de Vere was educated by outstanding Renaissance scholars and at Cambridge University, Oxford University and the Inns of Court. (The man from Stratford had virtually no education except possibly grammar school till he was twelve.) * Since one-third of the plays of Shakespeare are set in Italy, Edward de Vere's life in Venice, Padua, Verona, Rome, Sicily, Mantua and Volcano is described including his work with the director of the Academy of Art in Mantua where commedia dell'arte was taught. (The man from Stratford never traveled outside of England and spoke no Italian or any other foreign language.) * Since no manuscript of the works of Shakespeare has ever been found in the hand of the author, the literary works of Edward de Vere are described along with the fact that in his life-time he was praised as the "most excellent writer" in Queen Elizabeth's court and, as England's premier nobleman, he was required to write anonymously and forbidden from publishing or staging any of his writings in its own name. (The man from Stratiord never left a single piece of writing in his hand except six signatures on his Will and mortgage.) * Since the works of Shakespeare are a veritable autobiography of the life of the life of Edward de Vere -- from the poisoning of his father to his wrongful accusation of his wife's infidelity -- the life of de Vere is depicted from when he was five to the time of his tragic death, including his "favored," sexual relationship with the queen and his intimate relationship with Emilia Bassano, who is widely accepted as the "Dark Lady" of Shakespeare's Sonnets. (There is no evidence of any relationship between the Stratford man and Emilia Bassano,). In short, while the documentary evidence of de Vere's -- or the Stratford man's -- authorship of the works of Shakespeare is missing, the circumstantial evidence of de Vere's authorship is overwhelming. And as United States Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens puts it, "circumstantial evidence can be as persuasive as documentary evidence especially where, as here, there's so much of it.

KEYWORDS
Myth, Edward de Vere, The 17th Earl of Oxford, The Stratford Man, Anonymous Writer, Autobiographical Nature of de Vere's Writing

Cite this paper
Newton Frohlich (2016). Writing the Shakespeare Mask: The Novelist's Choices. Linguistics and Literature Studies, 4 , 124 - 128. doi: 10.13189/lls.2016.040204.