The Shakespeare Authorship Coalition responds

135 views
Skip to first unread message

Peter F.

unread,
Nov 21, 2011, 1:48:32 AM11/21/11
to
At a press conference in Los Angeles this morning (Monday),
Michael York will announce the release of the Shakespeare
Authorship Coalition's response to "60 Minutes with Shake-
speare". This was the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust's
attack upon what they are pleased to call "The Shakespeare
Authorship Conspiracy Theory" and the "Anti-Shakespearians"
who support it.

Responses are provided to each of their 60 "answers" (in
fact 61, as Prince Charles was roped in at the last moment)
and the whole thing, titled "Exposing an Industry in Denial"
may be read at <https://doubtaboutwill.org/exposing>.

Peter F.
<pet...@rey.prestel.co.uk>
<http://www2.prestel.co.uk/rey/index.htm>

Robin G.

unread,
Nov 21, 2011, 3:05:35 AM11/21/11
to
> <pete...@rey.prestel.co.uk>
> <http://www2.prestel.co.uk/rey/index.htm>

Sorry, but this is the same old same old those who don't believe Will
Shakespeare of Stratford-upon-Avon wrote Shakespeare trot out to
support their claims. Most of these folks don't have a clue about the
current research and writings of Early Modern scholars. Those who
deny Will wrote Shakespeare are busy turning biography into a fetish.
Biographical criticism is 20 years or more in the past.

Those who deny Will wrote Shakespeare were certain "Anonymous" was
bring crowds into the theatres and walk out converts to the cause.
Reality hit when the movie tanked. The historical flaws were glaring
and the screenplay was awful. It must of warmed the hearts of those
who have convinced themselves Marlowe wrote Shakespeare that in the
movie Kit was still living.

It wasn't Kit, Mary, Eddie or any of the 70 plus candidates who wrote
Shakespeare. William Shakespeare of Stratford-upon-Avon who wrote
Shakespeare.

book...@yahoo.com

unread,
Nov 21, 2011, 4:11:32 AM11/21/11
to
It's significant that the Coalition have managed to instigate the
serious response by the SBT. The strategy is evidently to describe
alternate authorship attributions as anti-Stratman and conspiracy
theories.

Thus by defining the questions, answers are easier to come by. The 61
responses will no doubt be formidable and comprehensive, perhaps
constituting more substance in the Denial Industry now.

My only issues with Mr. Farey's thesis about Marlowe are:

1) It's one thing to propose Marlowe would have been as great as
Shakespeare, "if he had lived"; another to suggest he didn't die. This
is like Lynne Kositsky and Roger Stritmatter ostensibly re-dating the
Tempest before proceeding to conclude Oxford might have lived long
enough to have written it; and

2) The inquest's "faking Marlowe's death" means that he didn't die, as
opposed to concealing something about the circumstances and manner of
his death. That Marlowe was working with the Secret Service would
make that possible, IMO.

Anyway, nice to know PF is still keeping his end up. bookburn




Peter F.

unread,
Nov 21, 2011, 5:34:48 AM11/21/11
to

"Robin G." wrote:
Much of it certainly consists of material that I have read
before, but by no means all of it. And there is some with
which I am in disagreement - though surprisingly little,
given the predominance of Oxfordian respondents.

Quite why you would expect it be new stuff escapes me,
though. What matters is that it all appears to have been
unknown to the SBT's "super 61", presumably as a result of
their having always insulated themselves from such naughty
notions and the arguments offered in their support.

Your saying that "It must of warmed the hearts of those
who have convinced themselves Marlowe wrote Shakespeare
that in the movie Kit was still living" amused me. Yes,
it must of. Although to be fair, they did have his throat
cut (I think) in some London backstreet later on in the
film. And this probably represents an ignorance of the
details surrounding Marlowe's supposed death matched only
by most of those who parrot out the old cry that Marlowe
couldn't have written the works because he was dead
before they were written. I exclude Charles Nicholl from
this, who knows full well that a strong case can be made
for Marlowe's survival, but who for one reason or another
forgot to mention it!

Peter F.

unread,
Nov 21, 2011, 8:58:12 AM11/21/11
to

Bookburn wrote:
>
> It's significant that the Coalition have managed to
> instigate the serious response by the SBT. The strategy
> is evidently to describe alternate authorship attrib-
> utions as anti-Stratman and conspiracy theories.

Their strategy is to frame all such doubt as a single
"Shakepeare Authorship Conspiracy Theory" (when they know
full well that there is no such thing) and all doubters
as "Anti-Shakespearians," implying that we are attacking
their beloved author in some way, whereas they know that
our admiration for the author is not a whit less than any
of theirs. Semantic trickery, which only a fool would fall
for.

> Thus by defining the questions, answers are easier to
> come by. The 61 responses will no doubt be formidable and
> comprehensive, perhaps constituting more substance in the
> Denial Industry now.

I think that most of them are pretty good. It would be nice
to think that the more intelligent Stratfordians will read
them, rather than simply respond with the knee-jerk reaction
typified by Robin G.'s post.

> My only issues with Mr. Farey's thesis about Marlowe are:
> 1) It's one thing to propose Marlowe would have been as
> great as Shakespeare, "if he had lived"; another to suggest
> he didn't die. This is like Lynne Kositsky and Roger
> Stritmatter ostensibly re-dating the Tempest before proc-
> eeding to conclude Oxford might have lived long enough to
> have written it;

No, Don, it is nothing like that. It is convenient for
Stanley Wells, Charles Nicholl, et al. to portray the issue
of Marlowe's death as an intractable problem which stands in
the way of the Marlovian hypothesis being taken seriously.
What they in their self-satisfied ignorance apparently find
impossible to understand is that the faked death scenario is
a major part of the hypothesis *itself*, not a defensive
reaction to a problem with it.

One day, I hope, somebody will explain to me why the argument
I present in my recently updated essay "Marlowe's Sudden and
Fearful End" (at the site below) - and in particular how it
explains so many of the anomalies surrounding it - doesn't
raise serious doubts about Marlowe having actually died that
day. But I won't hold my breath.

> and
> 2) The inquest's "faking Marlowe's death" means that he
> didn't die, as opposed to concealing something about the
> circumstances and manner of his death. That Marlowe was
> working with the Secret Service would make that possible,
> IMO.

Indeed it would. And if someone can come up with a version
of his "death" based on this, and which takes account of all
the evidence available to us about, I would love to hear it.

> Anyway, nice to know PF is still keeping his end up.

I wish!

Algernon H. Nuttsakk

unread,
Nov 21, 2011, 9:35:32 AM11/21/11
to
On Mon, 21 Nov 2011 02:34:48 -0800 (PST), you wrote:
>
>
> "Robin G." wrote:
> >
> > "Peter F." wrote:
> > >
> > > At a press conference in Los Angeles this morning (Monday),
> > > Michael York will announce the release of the Shakespeare
> > > Authorship Coalition's response to "60 Minutes with Shake-
> > > speare". This was the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust's
> > > attack upon what they are pleased to call "The Shakespeare
> > > Authorship Conspiracy Theory" and the "Anti-Shakespearians"
> > > who support it.
> >
> > > Responses are provided to each of their 60 "answers" (in
> > > fact 61, as Prince Charles was roped in at the last moment)
> > > and the whole thing, titled "Exposing an Industry in Denial"
> > > may be read at <https://doubtaboutwill.org/exposing>.
> >
> > > Peter F.
> > > <pete...@rey.prestel.co.uk>
> > > <http://www2.prestel.co.uk/rey/index.htm>
> >
> > Sorry, but this is the same old same old those who don't believe Will
> > Shakespeare of Stratford-upon-Avon wrote Shakespeare trot out to
> > support their claims. Most of these folks don't have a clue about the
> > current research and writings of Early Modern scholars. =A0Those who
> > deny Will wrote Shakespeare are busy turning biography into a fetish.
> > Biographical criticism is 20 years or more in the past.
> >
> > Those who deny Will wrote Shakespeare were certain "Anonymous" was
> > bring crowds into the theatres and walk out converts to the cause.
> > Reality hit when the movie tanked. =A0The historical flaws were glaring
> > and the screenplay was awful. =A0It must of warmed the hearts of those
> > who have convinced themselves Marlowe wrote Shakespeare that in the
> > movie Kit was still living.
> >
> > It wasn't Kit, Mary, Eddie or any of the 70 plus candidates who wrote
> > Shakespeare. =A0William Shakespeare of Stratford-upon-Avon who wrote
> > Shakespeare.
>
> Much of it certainly consists of material that I have read
> before, but by no means all of it. And there is some with
> which I am in disagreement - though surprisingly little,
> given the predominance of Oxfordian respondents.
>
> Quite why you would expect it be new stuff escapes me,
> though. What matters is that it all appears to have been
> unknown to the SBT's "super 61", presumably as a result of
> their having always insulated themselves from such naughty
> notions and the arguments offered in their support.
>
> Your saying that "It must of warmed the hearts of those
> who have convinced themselves Marlowe wrote Shakespeare
> that in the movie Kit was still living" amused me. Yes,
> it must of. Although to be fair, they did have his throat
> cut (I think) in some London backstreet later on in the
> film. And this probably represents an ignorance of the
> details surrounding Marlowe's supposed death matched only
> by most of those who parrot out the old cry that Marlowe
> couldn't have written the works because he was dead
> before they were written. I exclude Charles Nicholl from
> this, who knows full well that a strong case can be made
> for Marlowe's survival, but who for one reason or another
> forgot to mention it!
>
> Peter F.
> <pete...@rey.prestel.co.uk>
> <http://www2.prestel.co.uk/rey/index.htm>

Marlowe was a blasphemous prig, an outhouse
cleaner and the son of a cobbler, and his
disgusting lower-class origins immediately
rule him out as the author of "Henry V".
What did Marlowe know of cabbages and Kings?
Of cabbages he was no doubt an erudite expert
concerning their flavor, aroma and their
effect on his bowel movements, but of kings
he knew nothing.


AHN



John W Kennedy

unread,
Nov 21, 2011, 10:59:12 AM11/21/11
to
Somehow or other, I've gotten onto their mailing list. I actually
received their notice before the press-embargo hour.

Folks, they're angry. Outraged, in fact, publicly casting themselves as
martyrs for Truth and Common Decency as I've never seen them do before.
I'm not saying the wasps' nest shouldn't have been kicked in
anticipation of "Anonymous", no matter how damp a squib it proved in
the event, but it's been well and truly kicked now.

--
John W Kennedy
"You can, if you wish, class all science-fiction together; but it is
about as perceptive as classing the works of Ballantyne, Conrad and W.
W. Jacobs together as the 'sea-story' and then criticizing _that_."
-- C. S. Lewis. "An Experiment in Criticism"

Peter F.

unread,
Nov 21, 2011, 1:18:52 PM11/21/11
to
John W Kennedy wrote:
>
> Robin G. wrote:
>
> > Peter F. wrote:
> > >
> > > At a press conference in Los Angeles this morning (Monday),
> > > Michael York will announce the release of the Shakespeare
> > > Authorship Coalition's response to "60 Minutes with Shake-
> > > speare". This was the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust's
> > > attack upon what they are pleased to call "The Shakespeare
> > > Authorship Conspiracy Theory" and the "Anti-Shakespearians"
> > > who support it.
> > >
> > > Responses are provided to each of their 60 "answers" (in
> > > fact 61, as Prince Charles was roped in at the last moment)
> > > and the whole thing, titled "Exposing an Industry in Denial"
> > > may be read at <https://doubtaboutwill.org/exposing>.
> >
Well said, John.

Not martyrs exactly, but "Common Decency" and a mutual discussion
about just what the "Truth" might be would have been nice.

And thanks for the C. S. Lewis quote. It is also about as perceptive
as
classing all such theories as "The Shakespeare Authorship Conspiracy
Theory" and then criticizing _that_.

Tom Reedy

unread,
Nov 21, 2011, 1:20:30 PM11/21/11
to
On Nov 21, 7:58 am, "Peter F." <pete...@rey.prestel.co.uk> wrote:
> Bookburn wrote:
>
> > It's significant that the Coalition have managed to
> > instigate the serious response by the SBT. The strategy
> > is evidently to describe alternate authorship attrib-
> > utions as anti-Stratman and conspiracy theories.
>
> Their strategy is to frame all such doubt as a single
> "Shakepeare Authorship Conspiracy Theory" (when they know
> full well that there is no such thing) and all doubters
> as "Anti-Shakespearians," implying that we are attacking
> their beloved author in some way, whereas they know that
> our admiration for the author is not a whit less than any
> of theirs. Semantic trickery, which only a fool would fall
> for.

It is indeed semantic trickery, of the exact same nature as
classifying the conspiracy theorists as "anti-Stratfordians" and the
Shakespeare believers as "Stratfordians", as if there were some type
of parity between the two instead of one being a parody of the other.
Logically the "Stratfordians" should be "Shakespeareans", just as
Oxford believers are Oxfordians and Marlowe believers Marlovians.
Those who have no particular candidate should be "anti-
Shakespeareans".

> > Thus by defining the questions, answers are easier to
> > come by. The 61 responses will no doubt be formidable and
> > comprehensive, perhaps constituting more substance in the
> > Denial Industry now.
>
> I think that most of them are pretty good. It would be nice
> to think that the more intelligent Stratfordians will read
> them, rather than simply respond with the knee-jerk reaction
> typified by Robin G.'s post.

Which ones do you think are good? It's mostly the same old in-and-out
that I can see.

> > My only issues with Mr. Farey's thesis about Marlowe are:
> > 1) It's one thing to propose Marlowe would have been as
> > great as Shakespeare, "if he had lived"; another to suggest
> > he didn't die. This is like Lynne Kositsky and Roger
> > Stritmatter ostensibly re-dating the Tempest before proc-
> > eeding to conclude Oxford might have lived long enough to
> > have written it;
>
> No, Don, it is nothing like that. It is convenient for
> Stanley Wells, Charles Nicholl, et al. to portray the issue
> of Marlowe's death as an intractable problem which stands in
> the way of the Marlovian hypothesis being taken seriously.

It is not only Marlowe's death, it is the very real evidence for
William Shakespeare that stands in the way of any other candidate.
That evidence can only be explained by strained special pleading and
conspiracies.

> What they in their self-satisfied ignorance apparently find
> impossible to understand is that the faked death scenario is
> a major part of the hypothesis *itself*, not a defensive
> reaction to a problem with it.
>
> One day, I hope, somebody will explain to me why the argument
> I present in my recently updated essay "Marlowe's Sudden and
> Fearful End" (at the site below) - and in particular how it
> explains so many of the anomalies surrounding it - doesn't
> raise serious doubts about Marlowe having actually died that
> day. But I won't hold my breath.
>
> > and
> > 2) The inquest's "faking Marlowe's death" means that he
> > didn't die, as opposed to concealing something about the
> > circumstances and manner of his death.  That Marlowe was
> > working with the Secret Service would make that possible,
> > IMO.
>
> Indeed it would. And if someone can come up with a version
> of his "death" based on this, and which takes account of all
> the evidence available to us about, I would love to hear it.
>
> > Anyway, nice to know PF is still keeping his end up.
>
> I wish!

Don't despair, I'm getting there too!

TR

Paul Crowley

unread,
Nov 21, 2011, 3:02:30 PM11/21/11
to
On 21/11/2011 13:58, Peter F. wrote:

> One day, I hope, somebody will explain to me why the argument
> I present in my recently updated essay "Marlowe's Sudden and
> Fearful End" (at the site below) - and in particular how it
> explains so many of the anomalies surrounding it - doesn't
> raise serious doubts about Marlowe having actually died that
> day. But I won't hold my breath.

I guess that most people are like me, and have no interest in
reading it -- or not until you give us a good reason to, such as
a plausible account of why a sober and sensible government
would partake in a 'faked death' conspiracy when -- even if
we accept your other suppositions that some kind of drastic
action was necessary -- such a government had so many
other options available.

Is there any evidence that ANY government (or other responsible
organisation -- or, heck, ANY other organisation, period) EVER
took part in a 'faked death' conspiracy?

The trouble about faked deaths is that, even in the modern
world, the supposedly dead person is routinely recognised,
or 'comes back to life' of his own accord. Who would want
to be known to have been a part of the organisation that was
responsible for so crazy a plan?

Paul.

Bob Grumman

unread,
Nov 21, 2011, 3:50:52 PM11/21/11
to
On Nov 21, 8:58 am, "Peter F." <pete...@rey.prestel.co.uk> wrote:
> Bookburn wrote:
>
> > It's significant that the Coalition have managed to
> > instigate the serious response by the SBT. The strategy
> > is evidently to describe alternate authorship attrib-
> > utions as anti-Stratman and conspiracy theories.
>
> Their strategy is to frame all such doubt as a single
> "Shakepeare Authorship Conspiracy Theory" (when they know
> full well that there is no such thing)

That's like saying that because no biologist has exactly the same
understanding of the theory of evolution, that one can't refer to a
single theory of biology. All Marlovians have to believe in a double-
conspiracy, one to account for the faked death, and one to account for
the authorship hoax. So it makes perfect sense to speak of a
Marlovian Conspiracy Theory, as a special instance of the overall
Shakespeare authorship conspiracy theory, required of all anti-
Stratfordians however much they try to deny it. They are all anti-
Shakespeare, too, since "Shakespeare" was the Stratford man's name,
and to say that he was less than he has always been given credit for
being is surely to be against him.

> and all doubters
> as "Anti-Shakespearians," implying that we are attacking
> their beloved author in some way, whereas they know that
> our admiration for the author is not a whit less than any
> of theirs. Semantic trickery, which only a fool would fall for.

If I say Grant was a drunk whose wife, wearing his uniform and calling
herself, "General Grant," was responsible for all his victories, which
is obviously untrue, I would not be attacking Grant?

> > Thus by defining the questions, answers are easier to
> > come by. The 61 responses will no doubt be formidable and
> > comprehensive, perhaps constituting more substance in the
> > Denial Industry now.
>
> I think that most of them are pretty good. It would be nice
> to think that the more intelligent Stratfordians will read
> them, rather than simply respond with the knee-jerk reaction
> typified by Robin G.'s post.
>
> > My only issues with Mr. Farey's thesis about Marlowe are:
> > 1) It's one thing to propose Marlowe would have been as
> > great as Shakespeare, "if he had lived"; another to suggest
> > he didn't die. This is like Lynne Kositsky and Roger
> > Stritmatter ostensibly re-dating the Tempest before proc-
> > eeding to conclude Oxford might have lived long enough to
> > have written it;
>
> No, Don, it is nothing like that. It is convenient for
> Stanley Wells, Charles Nicholl, et al. to portray the issue
> of Marlowe's death as an intractable problem which stands in
> the way of the Marlovian hypothesis being taken seriously.

I don't think they or any sane person thinks his death stands in the
way of the Marlovian theory's being taken seriously. What stands in
its way is the complete absence of direct documentary evidence that
Marlowe wrote a word of Shakespeare's works combined with the copious
direct documentary evidence that Will Shakespeare did.

> What they in their self-satisfied ignorance apparently find
> impossible to understand is that the faked death scenario is
> a major part of the hypothesis *itself*, not a defensive
> reaction to a problem with it.

How about his going to Italy? Is that part of the hypothesis or an
attempt to explain why we have no direct documentary evidence that
anyone ever saw him alive after 1603? In any case, no matter how you
describe your two conspiracy theories, they remain two in number,and
you have to explain both.

> One day, I hope, somebody will explain to me why the argument
> I present in my recently updated essay "Marlowe's Sudden and
> Fearful End" (at the site below) - and in particular how it
> explains so many of the anomalies surrounding it - doesn't
> raise serious doubts about Marlowe having actually died that
> day. But I won't hold my breath.

Whose judgement will determine the validity of their explanation,
Pau . . ., I mean, Peter?

> > and
> > 2) The inquest's "faking Marlowe's death" means that he
> > didn't die, as opposed to concealing something about the
> > circumstances and manner of his death.  That Marlowe was
> > working with the Secret Service would make that possible,
> > IMO.
>
> Indeed it would. And if someone can come up with a version
> of his "death" based on this, and which takes account of all
> the evidence available to us about, I would love to hear it.
>
> > Anyway, nice to know PF is still keeping his end up.
>
> I wish!
>
> Peter F.
> <pete...@rey.prestel.co.uk>
> <http://www2.prestel.co.uk/rey/index.htm>

Bob Grumman

unread,
Nov 21, 2011, 3:56:53 PM11/21/11
to
> I exclude Charles Nicholl from
> this, who knows full well that a strong case can be made
> for Marlowe's survival, but who for one reason or another
> forgot to mention it!
>
> Peter F.

You're implying that we now have a new conspiracy theory to go along
with the two begun in 1603 concerning Marlowe's death and who wrote
Shakespeare?

--Bob

m.balarama

unread,
Nov 21, 2011, 4:41:11 PM11/21/11
to
On Nov 21, 8:35 am, Algernon H. Nuttsakk <algernonhnutts...@yahoo.com>
wrote:
he was a cambridge graduate-but was kiilled before all the plays were
written

Bob Grumman

unread,
Nov 21, 2011, 6:24:48 PM11/21/11
to
On Nov 21, 9:35 am, Algernon H. Nuttsakk <algernonhnutts...@yahoo.com>
wrote:
> AHN- Hide quoted text -
>
> - Show quoted text -

Ah, so you don't believe he was the illegimate son of James of
Scotland, Professor?

--Bob

Bob Grumman

unread,
Nov 21, 2011, 6:24:19 PM11/21/11
to
> Shakespeare.- Hide quoted text -
>
> - Show quoted text -

Yes, propagandistic crap such as proporting to show why our side is
wrong to claim there's no doubt who wrote Shakespeare's works when
what we say is that there's no REASONABLE doubt about that, for just
one of probably a hundred examples.. Quite annoying. But as an
author with an improved edition of a book on the subject I'm finishing
in which I can quote and show the idiocy of the wacks' latest
expression of their delusions, I welcome the continuing squabble.
(The improvement, earlier announced to wide applause here, will
discuss what I call the conspiraplex, and show how similar the
authorship conspiraplex is to other well-known ones, including--
horrors--holocaust denial, although it's much nicer.)

--Bob

John W Kennedy

unread,
Nov 21, 2011, 10:30:57 PM11/21/11
to
The current new strategy is to go back to the "knowledge of Italy"
meme. Fortunately, they're overreaching, putting forward the absurd
idea that the works of Shakespeare are all you need as a practical
tourist guide for years of travel in Italy. Since there isn't enough
practical tourist information in all of Shakespeare combined to
constitute a decent tourist guide to, say, Somersetshire, one doesn't
even have to check the individual facts to see that the argument falls
apart.

John W Kennedy

unread,
Nov 21, 2011, 10:52:42 PM11/21/11
to
Not really.

To say, "This story involves space travel," for example, establishes
nothing about the plot, the characters, the language, the imagery, or
the mood of the work, or about any philosophical theses that it may
present. Ray Bradbury, Isaac Asimov, and Olaf Stapledon, for instance,
inhabit wholly different countries of the mind. But all
anti-Shakespeare beliefs do have one central thesis: "The works of
Shakespeare were not written by William Shakespeare, but by some other
person," and all of them (as far as I know) bring in byzantine
conspiracy theories to explain why the truth had to be hidden.

Tom Reedy

unread,
Nov 21, 2011, 11:45:51 PM11/21/11
to
OT, but as good as they were, none of these guys were as good as Tom
Disch.

TR

Robin G.

unread,
Nov 21, 2011, 11:07:53 PM11/21/11
to
> <pete...@rey.prestel.co.uk>
> <http://www2.prestel.co.uk/rey/index.htm>

Why do you insist Charles Nicholl include something in his book he
does not believe? It's like insisting the author of a book on
evolution including something about creationism.

I have read and seen Marlowe, I have read and seen Shakespeare; I
never confuse one with the other.

Peter F.

unread,
Nov 22, 2011, 5:47:52 AM11/22/11
to
Tom Reedy wrote:
>
> Peter Farey wrote:
> >
> > Their strategy is to frame all such doubt as a single
> > "Shakepeare Authorship Conspiracy Theory" (when they know
> > full well that there is no such thing) and all doubters
> > as "Anti-Shakespearians," implying that we are attacking
> > their beloved author in some way, whereas they know that
> > our admiration for the author is not a whit less than any
> > of theirs. Semantic trickery, which only a fool would fall
> > for.
>
> It is indeed semantic trickery, of the exact same nature as
> classifying the conspiracy theorists as "anti-Stratfordians"
> and the Shakespeare believers as "Stratfordians", as if
> there were some type of parity between the two instead of
> one being a parody of the other.

Oh, funny. As far as I know, it was George Greenwood who, in
1908, first used the terms Stratfordian and anti-Stratfordian.
Right at the start of his book "The Shakespeare Problem
Restated" he said that:

<quote>

In this work I have followed the convenient practice
of writing "Shakespeare" where I am speaking of
the author of the Plays and Poems, and "Shakspere"
where I refer to William Shakspere of Stratford
(whether he was or was not the author in question), except
in quotations, where I, of course, follow the originals.

I have also employed the word "Stratfordian" as a
compendious term to indicate one who holds the commonly
received opinion that Shakspere and Shakespeare are
identical, or as an epithet denoting such belief..."

<unquote>

and a little later he said "...still less do I assume any
sort of superiority for any section of the anti-Stratfordian
school..."

In neither case can I detect any sign of the terms being
chosen for a rhetorical purpose, just as a convenient short-
hand for the different schools of thought. His reference to
it being "the commonly received opinion" seems pretty fair
to me.

Since that time those two expressions have been easily the
most common way in which the difference has been described,
including in your own Shakespeare Authorship Question entry
in Wikipedia. The question then is whether Greenwood's use
of those terms was done to create a deliberately misleading
impression, as the SBT's choice undoubtedly is. And I would
claim that it was not.

> Logically the "Stratfordians" should be "Shakespeareans",
> just as Oxford believers are Oxfordians and Marlowe
> believers Marlovians. Those who have no particular cand-
> idate should be "anti-Shakespeareans".

That would have the advantage of consistency, but neverthe-
less gives the impression that we have something against
the author himself, which is simply not true. Personally
I would have no objection if it were "Shaksperian" and
"anti-Shaksperian", given that the man we are talking about
was apparently both baptized and buried as "Shakspere".
(I tend to prefer using the correct suffix "-ian", which would
normally replace the final "e", as in "Shakespearian" rather
than "Shakespearean".)

> > I think that most of them are pretty good. It would be nice
> > to think that the more intelligent Stratfordians will read
> > them, rather than simply respond with the knee-jerk reaction
> > typified by Robin G.'s post.
>
> Which ones do you think are good?

Most of them, as I said. As usual, I protested at the inclusion
of the changed monument and the Bohemian coast, but was
outgunned.

> It's mostly the same old in-and-out that I can see.

That you are familiar with the arguments in a way that few
can match seems quite irrelevant to me.

<snip>

> > No, Don, it is nothing like that. It is convenient for
> > Stanley Wells, Charles Nicholl, et al. to portray the issue
> > of Marlowe's death as an intractable problem which stands in
> > the way of the Marlovian hypothesis being taken seriously.
>
> It is not only Marlowe's death, it is the very real evidence
> for William Shakespeare that stands in the way of any other
> candidate. That evidence can only be explained by strained
> special pleading and conspiracies.

Yes of course that is true for all candidates, but "bookburn"
was commenting on my "thesis about Marlowe". Put very simply,
our main argument is:

(1) The details of Marlowe's recorded death lead us to conclude
that the most logical reason for those particular people to
have met at that particular place at that particular time was
to fake it.

(2) If Marlowe did survive, then the seamlessness of the trans-
ition from Marlowe's to Shakespeare's work, and the problems
with linking Shakespeare of Stratford with those works bearing
his name, lead us to conclude that they were most probably
written by Marlowe.

Yet the argument against us is always framed in terms of either
"what these people ignore is that Marlowe was dead when most of
the works were written" or "so they have had to dream up some
extraordinarily complex scheme by which he didn't really die
after all," which conveniently allows them to ignore the first
part of the case.

<snip>

Peter F.

unread,
Nov 22, 2011, 6:11:34 AM11/22/11
to
Robin G. wrote:
>
> Peter F. wrote:
> >
> > I exclude Charles Nicholl from this, who knows full well
> > that a strong case can be made for Marlowe's survival,
> > but who for one reason or another forgot to mention it!
>
> Why do you insist Charles Nicholl include something in his
> book he does not believe? It's like insisting the author
> of a book on evolution including something about creationism.

I don't recall "insisting" upon anything. Nor was I talking
about a book. Apparently your dismissal of the document which
is the subject of this thread as "same old same old" wasn't
based upon your having actually looked at it after all.
Tut, tut.

Should you ever decide to thumb through it, you will see that
Question 51 was addressed to Charles Nicholl, and it was to
his answer that I was referring. As for what he believes, I
can only go on what he wrote to me about my essay "Marlowe's
Sudden and Fearful End", which I sent to him not long after
the second edition of his "The Reckoning" was published.

> I have read and seen Marlowe, I have read and seen Shake-
> speare; I never confuse one with the other.

Me too and me neither. How about early and late Henry James?
Do you ever confuse one of them with the other?

Peter F.

unread,
Nov 22, 2011, 9:18:22 AM11/22/11
to
Bob Grumman wrote:
>
> Peter Farey wrote:
> >
> > Bookburn wrote:
> > >
> > > It's significant that the Coalition have managed to
> > > instigate the serious response by the SBT. The strategy
> > > is evidently to describe alternate authorship attrib-
> > > utions as anti-Stratman and conspiracy theories.
> >
> > Their strategy is to frame all such doubt as a single
> > "Shakepeare Authorship Conspiracy Theory" (when they know
> > full well that there is no such thing)
>
> That's like saying that because no biologist has exactly
> the same understanding of the theory of evolution, that
> one can't refer to a single theory of biology.

Bob, "a theory of biology" is not the the same as "The
Theory of Biology" (if there is such a thing). Do you really
not see that?

The only characteristic shared by all anti-Stratfordians is
that they doubt the traditional attribution, and therefore
think it likely that someone else wrote the plays and poems.
A corollary of this must be either that the name William
Shakespeare was used as a pseudonym, or that the man from
Stratford was used as a front for the true writer. Neither
of these hypotheses can be legitimately called a "conspiracy",
which, as you know, must have a purpose which is unlawful,
evil, criminal or reprehensible. It also falls way short of
being what would be correctly termed a "theory".

Despite this gruesome misuse of English, however, the
expression has been quite deliberately chosen because of
the inevitable semantic connection it has with the truly
ghastly "conspiracy theories" we all know and loathe. Why
descend to such levels unless they are genuinely worried?

> All Marlovians have to believe in a double-conspiracy,
> one to account for the faked death, and one to account for
> the authorship hoax.

Funnily enough, Marlowe's "faked death" is the only thing
I can think of in the whole authorship issue, and for all
of the countless claimants, which might *just* deserve the
name *conspiracy*. I suppose the question revolves around
exactly who would have been involved in the deception, and
the extent to which any law was broken in perpetrating it.
My own view is that it was set up by the whole Privy
Council, and was no more unlawful than the issue of fake
documents to those protected these days under a witness
protection program. Bear in mind that the inquest was
rendered void, so that any illegalities in the way it was
run, or any inaccuracies in the evidence given, could have
been dismissed just as easily as the verdict, had it been
challenged.

> So it makes perfect sense to speak of a Marlovian
> Conspiracy Theory, as a special instance of the overall
> Shakespeare authorship conspiracy theory, required of
> all anti-Stratfordians however much they try to deny it.

I love the non-sequiturish "So". No, Bob, it doesn't
follow, for the reasons given above.

> They are all anti-Shakespeare, too, since "Shakespeare"
> was the Stratford man's name, and to say that he was
> less than he has always been given credit for being is
> surely to be against him.

Enough of the pretend naivety, Bob. You know why we object
to being called anti-Shakespearians, and you know that the
expressions based on Stratford have been perfectly accept-
able in the past. But if game-playing is your thing...

> > and all doubters
> > as "Anti-Shakespearians," implying that we are attacking
> > their beloved author in some way, whereas they know that
> > our admiration for the author is not a whit less than any
> > of theirs. Semantic trickery, which only a fool would fall
> > for.
>
> If I say Grant was a drunk whose wife, wearing his uniform
> and calling herself, "General Grant," was responsible for
> all his victories, which is obviously untrue, I would not
> be attacking Grant?

I guess that the phrases "unfair analogy" and "circular
reasoning" mean absolutely nothing to you, do they?

<snip>

> > > My only issues with Mr. Farey's thesis about Marlowe are:
> > > 1) It's one thing to propose Marlowe would have been as
> > > great as Shakespeare, "if he had lived"; another to suggest
> > > he didn't die. This is like Lynne Kositsky and Roger
> > > Stritmatter ostensibly re-dating the Tempest before proc-
> > > eeding to conclude Oxford might have lived long enough to
> > > have written it;
> >
> > No, Don, it is nothing like that. It is convenient for
> > Stanley Wells, Charles Nicholl, et al. to portray the issue
> > of Marlowe's death as an intractable problem which stands in
> > the way of the Marlovian hypothesis being taken seriously.
>
> I don't think they or any sane person thinks his death stands
> in the way of the Marlovian theory's being taken seriously.

Then I suggest you read what Charles Nicholl says in answer to
Question 51 of the document we are supposed to be discussing,
and the Marlovian bit of Paul Edmondson and Stanley Wells's
e-book "Shakespeare Bites Back".

> What stands in its way is the complete absence of direct
> documentary evidence that Marlowe wrote a word of Shake-
> speare's works combined with the copious direct documentary
> evidence that Will Shakespeare did.

Yes indeed. Of course this is a fairly formidable obstacle
to be overcome, but I think we have done so. However, the fact
is that these (presumably insane) people did in fact portray
Marlowe's "death" as standing in the way of the Marlovian
hypothesis. Embarrassing, eh?

> > What they in their self-satisfied ignorance apparently find
> > impossible to understand is that the faked death scenario is
> > a major part of the hypothesis *itself*, not a defensive
> > reaction to a problem with it.
>
> How about his going to Italy? Is that part of the hypothesis
> or an attempt to explain why we have no direct documentary
> evidence that anyone ever saw him alive after 1603?

When did I suggest that he went to Italy, Bob? Please remind
me. Although it is tempting to assume that this was where he
headed immediately following the supposed death (and many
Marlovians have trod that path) as far as I recall it is not
something that I have ever argued. I look forward to reading
this latest book, nevertheless, and may even be persuaded by it.

> In any case, no matter how you describe your two conspiracy
> theories, they remain two in number, and you have to explain
> both.

Ignoring this "conspiracy" crap, I have explained both. I have
also shown how each hypothesis provides an explanation for
*all* of the anomalies surrounding the two questions. That you
are still either unwilling or unable to address that particular
aspect of each argument is unfortunate but hardly unexpected.

> > One day, I hope, somebody will explain to me why the argument
> > I present in my recently updated essay "Marlowe's Sudden and
> > Fearful End" (at the site below) - and in particular how it
> > explains so many of the anomalies surrounding it - doesn't
> > raise serious doubts about Marlowe having actually died that
> > day. But I won't hold my breath.
>
> Whose judgement will determine the validity of their explanation,
> Pau . . ., I mean, Peter?

Whoever reads it, Bob. But this is difficult in the absence of
any such criticism of those particular arguments, even after all
these years. That you find my mode of argument indistinguishable
from Paul's says more about you, I'm afraid, than it does about me.

Tom Reedy

unread,
Nov 22, 2011, 1:37:47 PM11/22/11
to
On Nov 22, 4:47 am, "Peter F." <pete...@rey.prestel.co.uk> wrote:
> Tom Reedy wrote:
>
> > Peter Farey wrote:
>
> > > Their strategy is to frame all such doubt as a single
> > > "Shakepeare Authorship Conspiracy Theory" (when they know
> > > full well that there is no such thing) and all doubters
> > > as "Anti-Shakespearians," implying that we are attacking
> > > their beloved author in some way, whereas they know that
> > > our admiration for the author is not a whit less than any
> > > of theirs. Semantic trickery, which only a fool would fall
> > > for.
>
> > It is indeed semantic trickery, of the exact same nature as
> > classifying the conspiracy theorists as "anti-Stratfordians"
> > and the Shakespeare believers as "Stratfordians", as if
> > there were some type of parity between the two instead of
> > one being a parody of the other.
>
> Oh, funny. As far as I know, it was George Greenwood who, in
> 1908, first used the terms Stratfordian and anti-Stratfordian.
> Right at the start of his book "The Shakespeare Problem
> Restated" he said that:

No, it was used earlier in the 1880s. I've got the reference
somewhere; I researched it while helping to edit the Wikipedia SAQ
page.
> <pete...@rey.prestel.co.uk>
> <http://www2.prestel.co.uk/rey/index.htm>

Tom Reedy

unread,
Nov 22, 2011, 1:53:11 PM11/22/11
to
For some reason I hit "send" instead of the scrolling tab.
Well yes of course we can take Greenwood at his word; he absolutely
used no rhetorical tricks in his writing.

> > Since that time those two expressions have been easily the
> > most common way in which the difference has been described,
> > including in your own Shakespeare Authorship Question entry
> > in Wikipedia. The question then is whether Greenwood's use
> > of those terms was done to create a deliberately misleading
> > impression, as the SBT's choice undoubtedly is. And I would
> > claim that it was not.
>
> > > Logically the "Stratfordians" should be "Shakespeareans",
> > > just as Oxford believers are Oxfordians and Marlowe
> > > believers Marlovians. Those who have no particular cand-
> > > idate should be "anti-Shakespeareans".
>
> > That would have the advantage of consistency, but neverthe-
> > less gives the impression that we have something against
> > the author himself, which is simply not true. Personally
> > I would have no objection if it were "Shaksperian" and
> > "anti-Shaksperian", given that the man we are talking about
> > was apparently both baptized and buried as "Shakspere".
> > (I tend to prefer using the correct suffix "-ian", which would
> > normally replace the final "e", as in "Shakespearian" rather
> > than "Shakespearean".)

I've noticed the "-ian" is a British and the "-ean" an American
convention.

> > > > I think that most of them are pretty good. It would be nice
> > > > to think that the more intelligent Stratfordians will read
> > > > them, rather than simply respond with the knee-jerk reaction
> > > > typified by Robin G.'s post.
>
> > > Which ones do you think are good?
>
> > Most of them, as I said. As usual, I protested at the inclusion
> > of the changed monument and the Bohemian coast, but was
> > outgunned.
>
> > > It's mostly the same old in-and-out that I can see.
>
> > That you are familiar with the arguments in a way that few
> > can match seems quite irrelevant to me.

I understand. Since specious arguments have worked to catch so many in
the past, there's certainly no reason to stop using them now,
especially since the underlying principle seems to be conquest by
democracy. And that strategy certainly was a conscious decision, made
first by Ogburn in the mid-1970s because the Oxfordians weren't
getting anywhere by arguing with academics. He aimed the message at
the popular media instead; they're much more receptive to controversy,
since their main purpose is to provide an audience for advertisers.

> > <snip>
>
> > > > No, Don, it is nothing like that. It is convenient for
> > > > Stanley Wells, Charles Nicholl, et al. to portray the issue
> > > > of Marlowe's death as an intractable problem which stands in
> > > > the way of the Marlovian hypothesis being taken seriously.
>
> > > It is not only Marlowe's death, it is the very real evidence
> > > for William Shakespeare that stands in the way of any other
> > > candidate. That evidence can only be explained by strained
> > > special pleading and conspiracies.
>
> > Yes of course that is true for all candidates, but "bookburn"
> > was commenting on my "thesis about Marlowe". Put very simply,
> > our main argument is:
>
> > (1) The details of Marlowe's recorded death lead us to conclude
> > that the most logical reason for those particular people to
> > have met at that particular place at that particular time was
> > to fake it.

It appears to me that you're jumping to a conclusion not warranted by
the reported events. The details of Marlowe's recorded death lead us
to conclude that the most logical reason for those particular people
to have met at that particular place at that particular time was to
murder Marlowe. Since Elizabeth and her administrators had no qualms
about executing members of the nobility or religious leaders, why
would they would make allowances for a lowly playwright who worked in
a notoriously dangerous profession for a while?

> > (2) If Marlowe did survive, then the seamlessness of the trans-
> > ition from Marlowe's to Shakespeare's work, and the problems
> > with linking Shakespeare of Stratford with those works bearing
> > his name, lead us to conclude that they were most probably
> > written by Marlowe.

Big "if", for which there is no evidence save speculation. the rest of
the Marlovian theory rests on that speculation.

> > Yet the argument against us is always framed in terms of either
> > "what these people ignore is that Marlowe was dead when most of
> > the works were written" or "so they have had to dream up some
> > extraordinarily complex scheme by which he didn't really die
> > after all," which conveniently allows them to ignore the first
> > part of the case.

That part of the case being extremely speculative and against all that
we know about Elizabeth's spy network. Other than that, you're golden.

TR

Tom Reedy

unread,
Nov 22, 2011, 2:06:14 PM11/22/11
to
Peter, you'll be saddened to know that Jonathan Kay in his *Among the
truthers: a journey through the cognitive underworld of American life*
calls the SAQ "the most durable and ambitious literary conspiracy
theory of the twentieth century" (160), but you'll be cheered to know
that he doesn't think the believers are insane--he calls it a
"socially constructed conspiracist phenomenon". He says clinically
insane people are prominent at the beginning of popular conspiracy
theories, and gives L. Ron Hubbard and Delia Bacon as examples
(183-4).


It's an interesting read.

TR
> <pete...@rey.prestel.co.uk>
> <http://www2.prestel.co.uk/rey/index.htm>

John W Kennedy

unread,
Nov 22, 2011, 3:41:49 PM11/22/11
to
On 2011-11-22 14:18:22 +0000, Peter F. said:
> Bob, "a theory of biology" is not the the same as "The
> Theory of Biology" (if there is such a thing). Do you really
> not see that?

There /have/ been theories of Biology, all of them now utterly
discarded by scientists, though still popular as ersatz religions. At
that, I suppose one can still regard as a theory of Biology the modern
position that Life is an emergent phenomenon.

> The only characteristic shared by all anti-Stratfordians is
> that they doubt the traditional attribution, and therefore
> think it likely that someone else wrote the plays and poems.

You have, on occasion, denied that this is true in your own case. But,
be that as it may, the doubt that William Shakespeare was Shakespeare
is where it all goes wrong to begin with. The plays, if they show
anything, show a rural upbringing, a grammar-school education, a
middle-class understanding of society, and an intimate knowledge of
theatre. They also show a profound understanding of psychology (in the
modern sense of the word); if I were briefed to suggest that
Shakespeare were something that the record does not show William
Shakespeare of Stratford-on-Avon to have been, I would advance the
possibility that he was a working RC pastor, one who heard a great many
confessions. But could such a man have written "Measure for Measure"
without being squicked by the Duke's too-thorough masquerade?

> A corollary of this must be either that the name William
> Shakespeare was used as a pseudonym, or that the man from
> Stratford was used as a front for the true writer.

And if Jane Austen didn't write her own works, she must have been a
front for the true writer, too. I've always liked the hypothesis that
George III was the true writer, in the throes of a delusion to the
effect that he was Samuel Richardson.

> Neither
> of these hypotheses can be legitimately called a "conspiracy",
> which, as you know, must have a purpose which is unlawful,
> evil, criminal or reprehensible.

The theories generally alleged /do/ involve purposes that are "unlawful,
evil, criminal or reprehensible," including yours.
Message has been deleted

Bob Grumman

unread,
Nov 22, 2011, 6:37:39 PM11/22/11
to
Peter, my pocket dictionary defines "conspiracy" as "plot, ESP. an
illegal one," my caps. Not that it matters. Every sane person
knowledgeable about authorship theories knows that some kind of
complicated secret plotting to conceal a complicated hoax was
involved. How do you explain the monument as anything other than a
hoax perpetrated by secret plotters. Or Marlowe's faked death? All
authorship skeptics share what I call a conspiraplex and describe in
the upcoming third edition of my book. I see no good reason not to
call it, "the Shakespeare authorship conspiracy theory. The phrase,
"Shakespeare authorship," differentiates it from the conspiracy theory
that all conpsiracy nuts, such as the Roswell nuts, share.

Not wanting to repeat long threads you and I have contributed to, and
aware that you have enough to deal with from Robin and John and
perhaps others, I'll leave to alone now--unless something especially
annoys me.

--Bob

Bob Grumman

unread,
Nov 22, 2011, 6:57:07 PM11/22/11
to
We don't need a logical reason for people to get together. People can
bump into each other--for reasons that can't be determined 400 years
later. They can stay together, spend a day together, for reasons that
can't be determined 400 years later. There are a multitude of
plausible reasons to explain it. They enjoyed each other's company.
Two of them thought they could cheat the other of some money.
Homosexual attraction was a factor. One of them knew of a place where
really goodmeals were served and wanted to show the others how bright
he was for knowing this. They wanted to discuss possible formation of
a business. They were spies interested in learning things from each
other. They had nothing better to do. THe had all been told by an
angel that the Lord would appear at the Deptford place they ended at.
Etc. The conspiracy nut, whether believing in murder or a faked death
will cherry pick one reason because it suits his delusional system and
stick to it, whether plausible or not.

--Bob

Peter F.

unread,
Nov 23, 2011, 4:49:45 AM11/23/11
to

Tom Reedy wrote:
>
> Peter Farey wrote:
> >
> > (1) The details of Marlowe's recorded death lead us to conclude
> > that the most logical reason for those particular people to
> > have met at that particular place at that particular time was
> > to fake it.
>
> It appears to me that you're jumping to a conclusion not
> warranted by the reported events.

Tom, the more than 25,000 words I have written concerning
Marlowe's supposed death testify to my not having "jumped"
to this conclusion. I would nevertheless welcome any examp-
les you can give therein in which either the information or
the reasoning is wrong. See my essay "Marlowe's Sudden and
Fearful End" at the address below and the other related
articles of mine to which it provides links.

I find it the most logical conclusion because it is the
only one which apparently provides answers to all of the
rather strange features of the event itself and related
circumstances.

> The details of Marlowe's
> recorded death lead us to conclude that the most logical
> reason for those particular people to have met at that
> particular place at that particular time was to murder
> Marlowe. Since Elizabeth and her administrators had no
> qualms about executing members of the nobility or relig-
> ious leaders, why would they would make allowances for a
> lowly playwright who worked in a notoriously dangerous
> profession for a while?

For "lowly playwright" read "greatest playwright in England
at that time" and for "worked in a notoriously dangerous
profession" read "worked for them"? I don't know, Tom. For
me - although by no means all Marlovians agree with this -
the details suggest that it was a decision reached between
those mambers of the Privy Council who wanted him dead and
those who wanted him saved. I outline what I admit are my
speculations about this in my short piece "Marlowe and the
Privy Council" which, together with associated comments, are
at http://marlowe-shakespeare.blogspot.com/2011/05/marlowe-and-privy-council.html

Peter F.

unread,
Nov 23, 2011, 4:51:39 AM11/23/11
to
Tom Reedy wrote:
>
> Peter, you'll be saddened to know that Jonathan Kay in his
> *Among the truthers: a journey through the cognitive under-
> world of American life* calls the SAQ "the most durable and
> ambitious literary conspiracy theory of the twentieth
> century" (160), but you'll be cheered to know that he
> doesn't think the believers are insane--he calls it a
> "socially constructed conspiracist phenomenon". He says
> clinically insane people are prominent at the beginning of
> popular conspiracy theories, and gives L. Ron Hubbard and
> Delia Bacon as examples (183-4).
>
> It's an interesting read.

As indeed one would hope for from someone whose qualifications
cover metallurgical engineering, economics, Japanese language
and US law.

Peter F.

unread,
Nov 23, 2011, 4:52:44 AM11/23/11
to
John W Kennedy wrote:
>
> Peter Farey wrote:
> >
> > The only characteristic shared by all anti-Stratfordians is
> > that they doubt the traditional attribution, and therefore
> > think it likely that someone else wrote the plays and poems.
>
> You have, on occasion, denied that this is true in your own
> case.

You are right. The word "therefore" isn't really appropriate
for Marlovians. But I still find it impossible to find any way
of making the word "conspiracy" relevant in either case.

<snip>

> > Neither of these hypotheses can be legitimately called a
> > "conspiracy", which, as you know, must have a purpose which
> > is unlawful, evil, criminal or reprehensible.
>
> The theories generally alleged /do/ involve purposes that are
> "unlawful, evil, criminal or reprehensible," including yours.

Since I clearly am unaware of how this can be (other than in
the way I mentioned for mine), I would appreciate some further
clarification of what just what you have in mind, especially as
regards the others.

Peter F.

unread,
Nov 23, 2011, 4:54:30 AM11/23/11
to
Bob, the point I am making is a very simple one. Nobody
would think of applying the word "conspiracy" to the use of
a pseudonym these days, even if the true identity of the
author is kept secret. Nor would the word be used where a
ghost writer provides a text which someone else presents as
their own. So the only reason for using it in this case
is as a rhetorical trick to poison the well.

Peter F.

unread,
Nov 23, 2011, 4:56:40 AM11/23/11
to
Oh strewth. There is an infinite number of possible reasons
for those people to have met at that place on that day, and
many of those possible reasons may indeed be illogical.
However, if one is trying to decide which of those possible
reasons is most likely to be the true one, then the accepted
way is to apply logical inference to all of the facts about
it which one has at one's disposal.

My conclusion as to which is the most logical explanation of
all of those facts is that it was all to do with faking his
death. To say that there were countless other reasons why
they *might* have been there is completely irrelevant to
that conclusion, unless one of them can be shown to provide
a *better* explanation.

Tom Reedy

unread,
Nov 23, 2011, 5:09:41 PM11/23/11
to
Oh please. Your scenario is most certainly a conspiracy. And if, say,
the PM wrote plays using Derek Jacobi as a front, and he used
government resources to alter official government documents in order
to protest his identity, and if the Queen was also in on it and
ordered her underlings to do everything possible to ensure that the
secret was not found out, no person in his or her right mind would
dare NOT call it conspiracy.

TR

book...@yahoo.com

unread,
Nov 23, 2011, 6:26:18 PM11/23/11
to
If "conspiracy" is basically a plan to deceive the public, or at least
some targeted group, then there are lots of conspiracies around,
especially involving writers and publishers, IMO.

After the advent of the dime novel, it was common for publishers to
farm out their formula featuring the same central characters and
pseudonym. I understand several well-known authors wrote for the pulp
fiction market for the money without having to use their real name.

Today, we have the Bachman series written by Steven King. I guess he
just had some 2nd rate stuff put aside and decided to publish without
his name on them. According to my Internet search, he has also use
the pen names John Swithen and Eleanor Druse. Robert Heinlein wrote
so many science fiction stories he use several pseudonyms so he could
publish several stories in the same magazine issue.

And their are interesting special circumstances where women publish
using men's' names, or at least androgynous ones. I believe J. K.
Rowling and George Eliot did that.

(BTW, J. K. Rowling isn't the only Scottish authoress living and
writing in Edenburgh these days. Kate Atkinson, who authors the Case
Histories series on PBS and Masterpiece Theatre, based on her novels,
is my kind of read. Jackson Brodie is a private detective with a
heart of gold; like Jane in The Mentalist, but with muscles. I may
try to read all her highly acclaimed novels this holiday season.)

Happy Thanksgiving, bookburn

Peter F.

unread,
Nov 24, 2011, 1:53:19 AM11/24/11
to
Tom Reedy wrote:
>
> Peter Farey wrote:
>
> > Bob, the point I am making is a very simple one. Nobody
> > would think of applying the word "conspiracy" to the use of
> > a pseudonym these days, even if the true identity of the
> > author is kept secret. Nor would the word be used where a
> > ghost writer provides a text which someone else presents as
> > their own. So the only reason for using it in this case
> > is as a rhetorical trick to poison the well.
>
> Oh please. Your scenario is most certainly a conspiracy.
> And if, say, the PM wrote plays using Derek Jacobi as a
> front, and he used government resources to alter official
> government documents in order to protest his identity,
> and if the Queen was also in on it and ordered her under-
> lings to do everything possible to ensure that the secret
> was not found out, no person in his or her right mind
> would dare NOT call it conspiracy.

If you say so, Tom, but I don't recognize this as being at
all analogous to the scenario I am proposing. In any case,
I have already acknowledged that the Marlovian solution,
involving some or all of the members of the Privy Council,
may present a slightly different problem. What I am compl-
aining about is not that, but the use of the term "Shake-
speare Authorship Conspiracy Theory" to describe a general
belief that it was not William Shakespeare who wrote the
works, but someone else, as the SBT is doing. Whether it
was achieved by simply using the name as a pseudonym or
by using the man as a front the word "conspiracy", as it is
normally used in England, is equally inappropriate.

Peter F.

unread,
Nov 24, 2011, 2:25:29 AM11/24/11
to
"bookburn" wrote:
>
> If "conspiracy" is basically a plan to deceive the public,
> or at least some targeted group ...

But it isn't. Or rather it isn't just that. As I pointed
out earlier, it would also have a purpose which is
unlawful, evil, criminal or reprehensible.

book...@yahoo.com

unread,
Nov 24, 2011, 10:54:26 AM11/24/11
to
But the OED has

(quote)
conspiracy

1. a. The action of conspiring; combination of persons for an evil
or unlawful purpose.

1610 SHAKES. Temp. II. i. 301 Open-ey'd Conspiracie His time doth
take.

. . . .
2. a. . . . Also in phr. conspiracy of silence.

3. fig. Union or combination (of persons or things) for one end or
purpose; harmonious
action or effort; = conspiration (In a good or neutral sense.)
(unquote)

It seems to me that when one takes apart the term "con-spiracy", the
root L. meaning of OED:

L. conspirare lit. 'to breathe together', whence, 'to accord,
harmonize, agree, conbine or unite in a purpose, plot mischief
together secretly'.

Which leaves open the question of what we mean when we refer to "the
Stratman conspiracy", "the Oxford Shakespeare conspiracy", or "the
Marlowe inquest conspiracy", I think. bookburn

Tom Reedy

unread,
Nov 25, 2011, 1:24:43 AM11/25/11
to
On Nov 24, 12:53 am, "Peter F." <pete...@rey.prestel.co.uk> wrote:
> Tom Reedy wrote:
>
> > Peter Farey wrote:
>
> > > Bob, the point I am making is a very simple one. Nobody
> > > would think of applying the word "conspiracy" to the use of
> > > a pseudonym these days, even if the true identity of the
> > > author is kept secret. Nor would the word be used where a
> > > ghost writer provides a text which someone else presents as
> > > their own. So the only reason for using it in this case
> > > is as a rhetorical trick to poison the well.
>
> > Oh please. Your scenario is most certainly a conspiracy.
> > And if, say, the PM wrote plays using Derek Jacobi as a
> > front, and he used government resources to alter official
> > government documents in order to protest his identity,
> > and if the Queen was also in on it and ordered her under-
> > lings to do everything possible to ensure that the secret
> > was not found out, no person in his or her right mind
> > would dare NOT call it conspiracy.
>
> If you say so, Tom, but I don't recognize this as being at
> all analogous to the scenario I am proposing.

Your scenario includes using government resources to further an
imposture, alteration of government documents, perjury, and the
collusion of government officials at high levels and the recruitment
of civilians to further help the coverup, and you don't recognize your
scenario as analogous to the one I described?

> In any case,
> I have already acknowledged that the Marlovian solution,
> involving some or all of the members of the Privy Council,
> may present a slightly different problem. What I am compl-
> aining about is not that, but the use of the term "Shake-
> speare Authorship Conspiracy Theory" to describe a general
> belief that it was not William Shakespeare who wrote the
> works, but someone else, as the SBT is doing. Whether it
> was achieved by simply using the name as a pseudonym or
> by using the man as a front the word "conspiracy", as it is
> normally used in England, is equally inappropriate.

It probably is inappropriate, if accuracy of description is their
intention, but it isn't, as I thought I made clear above. They're
finally meeting Oxfordians on their own chosen battleground, the field
of propaganda to win the hearts and minds of the public, hardly any of
which cares very much about any of this. It makes me think that the
SBT is overreacting a bit; it's not like anybody but Oxfordians take
*Anonymous* as anything other than a mediocre movie. At the same time,
academe is finally acknowledging that they exist, and isn't that what
they've been wanting for so long? That the Shakespeare establishment
is universally dismissive should be no surprise.

Peter F.

unread,
Nov 25, 2011, 5:11:32 AM11/25/11
to
Tom Reedy wrote:
>
> Peter Farey wrote:
> >
> > Tom Reedy wrote:
> > >
> > > Oh please. Your scenario is most certainly a conspiracy.
> > > And if, say, the PM wrote plays using Derek Jacobi as a
> > > front, and he used government resources to alter official
> > > government documents in order to protest his identity,
> > > and if the Queen was also in on it and ordered her under-
> > > lings to do everything possible to ensure that the secret
> > > was not found out, no person in his or her right mind
> > > would dare NOT call it conspiracy.
> >
> > If you say so, Tom, but I don't recognize this as being at
> > all analogous to the scenario I am proposing.
>
> Your scenario includes using government resources to further
> an imposture, alteration of government documents, perjury,
> and the collusion of government officials at high levels and
> the recruitment of civilians to further help the coverup,
> and you don't recognize your scenario as analogous to the
> one I described?

Not really, but whether I do or not is irrelevant, given my
acknowledgement that at least the faked death, if not the use
of a front for the works (which your scenario was all about),
might be considered a conspiracy.

<snip>

> It probably is inappropriate, if accuracy of description is
> their intention, but it isn't, as I thought I made clear above.

I know you did, Tom. It's just that neither Bob (whom I was
actually addressing when you joined in) nor John seem prepared
to accept that, and apparently deem it perfectly appropriate.
In fact I'm still waiting for John to explain why he said that
the theories generally alleged /do/ involve purposes that are
"unlawful, evil, criminal or reprehensible."

<snip>

David L. Webb

unread,
Nov 26, 2011, 9:46:35 PM11/26/11
to
In article <jaeat3$344$1...@speranza.aioe.org>,
Paul Crowley <dsfds...@sdfsfsfs.com> wrote:

> On 21/11/2011 13:58, Peter F. wrote:
>
> > One day, I hope, somebody will explain to me why the argument
> > I present in my recently updated essay "Marlowe's Sudden and
> > Fearful End" (at the site below) - and in particular how it
> > explains so many of the anomalies surrounding it - doesn't
> > raise serious doubts about Marlowe having actually died that
> > day. But I won't hold my breath.

> I guess that most people are like me,

Not a bit -- Mr. Crowley is truly one of a kind. Nobody else regards
Shakespeare's sonnets as commemorations of royal crapping competitions
and the like. Moreover, most people immediately recognized the "Ray
Mignot" sonnet as a crude pastiche -- the glaring grammatical gaffe in
the very first line was one conspicuous tipoff -- and so were not
transported into raptures by it.

> and have no interest in
> reading it -- or not until you give us a good reason to, such as
> a plausible account of why a sober and sensible government
> would partake in a 'faked death' conspiracy when -- even if
> we accept your other suppositions that some kind of drastic
> action was necessary -- such a government had so many
> other options available.

While I am by no means persuaded by Peter's essay, it is more
plausible by far than the supposed genuineness of the "Ray Mignot"
sonnet. That's probably because Peter, while he may interpret the facts
in manner that seems odd to me, has a connection with the real world
robust enough to acknowledge that while he is entitled to his own
opinion, he is not entitled to his own facts; by contrast, Mr. Crowley,
whose connection with objective reality is much more tenuous, seems
enamored of his own "facts."

> Is there any evidence that ANY government (or other responsible
> organisation -- or, heck, ANY other organisation, period) EVER
> took part in a 'faked death' conspiracy?
>
> The trouble about faked deaths is that, even in the modern
> world, the supposedly dead person is routinely recognised,
> or 'comes back to life' of his own accord. Who would want
> to be known to have been a part of the organisation that was
> responsible for so crazy a plan?
>
> Paul.

John W Kennedy

unread,
Nov 26, 2011, 11:25:17 PM11/26/11
to
You do not regard a monstrous miscarriage of justice, compounded by
willful fraud under color of legal process as "reprehensible"?

John W Kennedy

unread,
Nov 26, 2011, 11:31:52 PM11/26/11
to
On 2011-11-25 06:24:43 +0000, Tom Reedy said:
> It makes me think that the
> SBT is overreacting a bit; it's not like anybody but Oxfordians take
> *Anonymous* as anything other than a mediocre movie.

Ah, but that couldn't have been certainly known in advance. And, far
more importantly, no one could have been certain in advance that,
mediocre or not, it wouldn't have been as successful as the equally
nonsensical "Da Vinci Code".

Peter F.

unread,
Nov 27, 2011, 6:23:29 AM11/27/11
to

John Kennedy wrote:
>
> Peter Farey wrote:
> >
> > John W Kennedy wrote:
> > >
> > > Peter Farey wrote:
> > > >
> > > >
> > > > The only characteristic shared by all anti-Stratfordians is
> > > > that they doubt the traditional attribution, and therefore
> > > > think it likely that someone else wrote the plays and poems.
> > >
> > > You have, on occasion, denied that this is true in your own
> > > case.
> >
> > You are right. The word "therefore" isn't really appropriate
> > for Marlovians. But I still find it impossible to find any way
> > of making the word "conspiracy" relevant in either case.
> >
> > <snip>
> > > >
> > > > Neither of these hypotheses can be legitimately called a
> > > > "conspiracy", which, as you know, must have a purpose which
> > > > is unlawful, evil, criminal or reprehensible.
> > >
> > > The theories generally alleged /do/ involve purposes that are
> > > "unlawful, evil, criminal or reprehensible," including yours.
> >
> > Since I clearly am unaware of how this can be (other than in
> > the way I mentioned for mine), I would appreciate some further
> > clarification of what just what you have in mind, especially as
> > regards the others.
>
> You do not regard a monstrous miscarriage of justice, compounded
> by willful fraud under color of legal process as "reprehensible"?
>
Yes John, I have already acknowledged that possibility. But that
isn't the point. You said that the theories *generally alleged*
/do/ involve purposes that are "unlawful, evil, criminal or rep-
rehensible." The emphasis of "generally alleged" is mine. I then
asked for clarification *especially as regards the others*.
>
Will you therefore please explain to me how you find authorship
theory *in general* - which, as I say, simply "doubts the
traditional attribution" and "thinks it likely that someone else
wrote the plays and poems" - can be said to "involve purposes
that are "unlawful, evil, criminal or reprehensible" in any
conspiratorial sense.

John W Kennedy

unread,
Nov 27, 2011, 10:36:50 AM11/27/11
to
Why, it all depends on the details, and I could spend the rest of my
life going through them. But nearly all of them, if only because of the
influence of Archer and Shaw on the modern psyche, suppose the plays to
be surreptitious political propaganda aimed undermining what the Whigs
would later call "the British Constitution". Just /how/ the British
constitution was to be undermined they seem to have trouble agreeing
on, whether by Divine Right autocracy or by liberal democracy, but
that's a relatively minor distinction compared to the notion that the
British constitution being under attack (a singularly fragile
constitution, I gather from my youthful subscription to "Punch", which
informed me here in the States of how Britain nearly tumbled into
outright facism when Prince Philip attempted to execute a coup d'état
by making an unguarded remark about the punishment of traffic
offenders).

According to "Anonymous", of course, this theory is not enough. Not
only must the plays have been an attack on English Liberty, they also
inadvertantly resulted in the failure of another conspiracy, viz., to
put the Cecil family on the throne. "...herein is contradiction
contradicted! It is the very marriage of pro with con; and no such
lopsided union either, as times go, for pro is not more unlike con than
man is unlike woman - yet men and women marry every day with none to
say, 'Oh, the pity of it!' but I and fools like me!"

Peter F.

unread,
Nov 28, 2011, 7:28:05 AM11/28/11
to
>   -- C. S. Lewis.  "An Experiment in Criticism"- Hide quoted text -
>
> - Show quoted text -


Interesting conclusion, but of course based upon a totally
incorrect premise. It is simply not true that nearly all of
them suppose the plays to be surreptitious political
propaganda. And even if it were, "nearly all" isn't enough
for it to justify the description "The Shakespeare
Authorship Conspiracy Theory".
>
Speaking of "Punch", I remember that on my first visit to
New York, way back in 1960, there was an exhibition - I
can't remember where - of cartoons just from that magazine
and from "The New Yorker". My travelling companion and I
couldn't help noticing how the American visitors were
hugely amused by the New Yorker ones but left unmoved
by those from Punch, whereas the British visitors (of which
there were quite a lot) were affected in exactly the
opposite way.

John W Kennedy

unread,
Nov 28, 2011, 10:40:35 AM11/28/11
to
On 2011-11-28 12:28:05 +0000, Peter F. said:
> Interesting conclusion, but of course based upon a totally
> incorrect premise. It is simply not true that nearly all of
> them suppose the plays to be surreptitious political
> propaganda.

I cannot think offhand of one that doesn't boil down to that, seeing
that it's the stock explanation for the alleged covr-up.

> And even if it were, "nearly all" isn't enough
> for it to justify the description "The Shakespeare
> Authorship Conspiracy Theory".

> Speaking of "Punch", I remember that on my first visit to
> New York, way back in 1960, there was an exhibition - I
> can't remember where - of cartoons just from that magazine
> and from "The New Yorker". My travelling companion and I
> couldn't help noticing how the American visitors were
> hugely amused by the New Yorker ones but left unmoved
> by those from Punch, whereas the British visitors (of which
> there were quite a lot) were affected in exactly the
> opposite way.

Intriguing. I am very fond of both, and have been for pretty much my
entire life.

Den...@northofshakespeare.com

unread,
Nov 30, 2011, 11:21:55 AM11/30/11
to
On Nov 28, 10:40 am, John W Kennedy <jwke...@attglobal.net> wrote:
> On 2011-11-28 12:28:05 +0000, Peter F. said:
>
> > Interesting conclusion, but of course based upon a totally
> > incorrect premise. It is simply not true that nearly all of
> > them suppose the plays to be surreptitious political
> > propaganda.
>
> I cannot think offhand of one that doesn't boil down to that, seeing
> that it's the stock explanation for the alleged covr-up.
>
> >  And even if it were, "nearly all" isn't enough
> > for it to justify the description "The Shakespeare
> > Authorship Conspiracy Theory".
> > Speaking of "Punch", I remember that on my first visit to
> > New York, way back in 1960, there was an exhibition - I
> > can't remember where - of cartoons just from that magazine
> > and from "The New Yorker". My travelling companion and I
> > couldn't help noticing how the American visitors were
> > hugely amused by the New Yorker ones but left unmoved
> > by those from Punch, whereas the British visitors (of which
> > there were quite a lot) were affected in exactly the
> > opposite way.
>
> Intriguing. I am very fond of both, and have been for pretty much my
> entire life.
>

Dennis responds: Well, the only non-conspiracy theory about
Shakespeare accepts the trivial fact that Shakespeare wrote the plays
attributed to him while he was alive and within a few years of his
death, including Yorkshire Tragedy, London Prodigal, TLC, Troublesome
Raigne and all the bad quartos. The orthodox rely on a system of
conspiracy theories in their effort to contend that Shakespeare was
framed for a dozen lesser plays by "pirate actors" and "nefarious
printers." In reality, there were no conspiracies. Shakespeare wrote
the works attributed to him.

TomFoster

unread,
Nov 30, 2011, 11:56:42 AM11/30/11
to
On Nov 30, 4:21 pm, "den...@northofshakespeare.com"
Great. That's wonderfully clear. So he wrote all the works in the
First Folio then. Or am I missing something?

Tom

neufer

unread,
Nov 30, 2011, 11:58:03 AM11/30/11
to
> Peter F. said:
>>
>> Interesting conclusion, but of course based upon a totally
>> incorrect premise. It is simply not true that nearly all of
>> them suppose the plays to be surreptitious political
>> propaganda.

John W Kennedy <jwke...@attglobal.net> wrote:
>
> I cannot think offhand of one that doesn't boil down to that,
> seeing that it's the stock explanation for the alleged covr-up.

It's an excellent explanation for the cover-up.

> Peter F. said:
>>
>>  And even if it were, "nearly all" isn't enough
>> for it to justify the description "The Shakespeare
>> Authorship Conspiracy Theory".
>> Speaking of "Punch", I remember that on my first visit to
>> New York, way back in 1960, there was an exhibition - I
>> can't remember where - of cartoons just from that magazine
>> and from "The New Yorker". My travelling companion and I
>> couldn't help noticing how the American visitors were
>> hugely amused by the New Yorker ones but left unmoved
>> by those from Punch, whereas the British visitors (of which
>> there were quite a lot) were affected in exactly the
>> opposite way.

John W Kennedy <jwke...@attglobal.net> wrote:
>
> Intriguing. I am very fond of both,
> and have been for pretty much my entire life.
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_humour

<<British humour is a somewhat general term applied to certain comedic
motifs that are often prevalent in comedic acts originating in the
United Kingdom and its current or former colonies. Comedy acts and
television programmes typical of British humour include Monty Python,
Benny Hill, and Keeping Up Appearances to name a few that have become
quite popular outside the United Kingdom. At times, however, such
humour can seem puzzling to non-British speakers of English. A strong
theme of sarcasm and self-deprecation runs throughout British Humour.
Emotion is often buried under humour in a way that seems insensitive
to other cultures. Jokes are told about everything and no subject is
taboo.

________ Smut and innuendo

Innuendo in British humour can be followed through history, it
features in Beowulf, and Chaucer, and folk songs are often littered
with it. Shakespeare wrote much comedy and was not above a little smut
to get a laugh, as in Hamlet act 4 scene v:

Young men will do't if they come to't / By Cock, they are to blame.

As shown by the capitalisation, Cock is here a contemporary euphemism
for God, neatly combining blasphemy with innuendo.

Following the Interregnum, theatre went through something of a
decline, until the Victorian era, Burlesque theatre rose in this time,
and combines sexuality and humour in its acts. Literature began to
become a more important medium with the printing press but remained
highbrow due to the price of books and low literacy rates. In the
nineteenth century magazines such as Punch began to be widely sold,
and innuendo featured in its cartoons and articles.

Coming into the twentieth century, the saucy postcard, as of Donald
McGill and Bamforths, were ubiquitous and nearly always based on a
sexual innuendo. This sort of humour was common in music halls and the
comedy music of George Fornby is rooted in this style. Many of the
comedians from music hall and wartime gang shows worked on the post-
war radio, and characters such as Julian and Sandy on Round the Horn,
heavily used innuendo in their acts.

As film and then television began to dominate entertainment, this
theme followed into the new media. The Carry On series was based
largely on this, and many of the sketches of The Two Ronnies are in
this vein, this sort of open smut was epitomised by Benny Hill. The
Nudge Nudge sketch by Monty Python even mocks this sort of sexual
humour.

As time progressed, more subtlety in sexual humour became fashionable
again, as in Not the Nine O'Clock News and Blackadder, while Bottom
and Viz continued the smuttier trend. In modern British comedy Frankie
Boyle and Julian Clary are prolific users of innuendo still.
------------------------------------------------------
________ Satire

Disrespect to members of the establishment and authority, typified by:

Beyond the Fringe, stage revue from the 1960s
That Was The Week That Was (TW3), late night TV satire
The Comic Strip Presents..., a series of short satirical films
Private Eye, satirical magazine
Not the Nine O'Clock News, satirical sketch show, notable for
launching the careers of Rowan Atkinson, Griff Rhys Jones, and Mel
Smith
Yes Minister, political sitcom
Spitting Image, TV puppet comedy lampooning the famous and
powerful
Brass Eye, a controversial alternative prime-time show
Discworld, a series of fantasy books written by Terry Pratchett,
heavy with irony criticizing various aspects of society
Have I Got News for You, a satirical panel game
The Young Ones, a cult sitcom starring Rik Mayall, Adrian
Edmondson, Nigel Planer and Christopher Ryan
Mock the Week, a satirical current affairs panel game.
The Day Today' Nineties Satire
Time Trumpet' Naughties Satire TV show
The Armando Iannucci Shows' Satirical TV show
------------------------------------------------------
________ Absurd

The absurd and the surreal, typified by:

Count Duckula, a cartoon show
The Goon Show, a surreal radio show
Spike Milligan's Q, a sketch show and a direct inspiration for
Monty Python
Monty Python, a comedy troupe, noted for performing sketches with
no conclusions
Green Wing, an experimental sitcom that utilises surrealism, sped-
up/slowed-down camera work, and ethereal, dream-like sequences.
Big Train, a sketch show with absurd situations performed in a
realistic, deadpan style.
Shooting Stars, a panel game with seemingly no rules
I'm Sorry I Haven't a Clue, a radio panel game with bizarre games,
notably Mornington Crescent and One Song to the Tune of Another
The Smell of Reeves and Mortimer, a variety show of sketches and
songs in the surrealist genre of comedy
Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band, a musical group playing songs inspired by
the music of the 1920s and comic rock songs
The Mighty Boosh, a comic fantasy containing non-sequiturs and pop-
culture references
"Bus Driver's Prayer"
The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, in radio, book, TV series
and film
The Armando Iannucci Shows, a comedy sketch show utilising
surrealism
Bedazzled, a movie remake of the legend of Faust by Peter Cook and
Dudley Moore
Black Books, a sitcom about a Bookshop owner, flavoured with
surreal and nonsensical elements
Red Dwarf, a science fiction sitcom
Brittas Empire, Chris Barrie sitcom set in a leisure centre about
an annoying manager.
The Magic Roundabout A dub parody of a French children's cartoon
that gained a cult following.
------------------------------------------------------
________ Macabre

Black humour, in which topics and events that are usually treated
seriously are treated in a humorous or satirical manner, typified by:

The League of Gentlemen, a cult comedy revolving around the
bizarre inhabitants of fictional town Royston Vasey
Jam, an unsettling TV sketch comedy with an ambient music
soundtrack
Nighty Night, a TV series about a sociopathic arch-manipulator who
takes advantage of the people around her
Garth Marenghi's Darkplace, a horror comedy revolving around the
supernatural, and is set in a hospital in the 1980s
"Murder Most Horrid", a TV series in which Dawn French plays
murderers and victims.
"Snuff Box", a sketch show about a hangman (Matt Berry) and his
assistant (Rich Fulcher), who make jokes or light-hearted conversation
while hanging men.
Death at a Funeral, a 2007 black comedy film.
Kind Hearts and Coronets, a film about a man murdering his way to
a hereditary position, starring Alec Guinness in numerous rôles.
Four Lions, a film satirising Jihadi terrorists within British
Society.
------------------------------------------------------
________ Surreal and chaotic

Vic Reeves Big Night Out (1990 and 1991) a parody of the variety
shows which dominated the early years of television, but which were,
by the early 1990s, falling from grace.
Bottom (1991–1995) noted for its chaotic humour and highly violent
slapstick.
The Young Ones (1982–1984), a British sitcom about four students
living together. It combined traditional sitcom style with violent
slapstick, non sequitur plot-turns and surrealism.
------------------------------------------------------
________ Humour inherent in everyday life

The humour, not necessarily apparent to the participants, inherent in
everyday life, as seen in:

Gavin and Stacey
Only Fools and Horses
Hancock's Half Hour
Till Death Us Do Part
Steptoe and Son
Human Remains
I'm Alan Partridge
The Office
The Royle Family
Spaced (a sitcom depicting the realistic, everyday lives and
emotional dramas of two London-dwelling twentysomethings, also
incorporating aspects of surreal and absurd comedy)
Peep Show
The Fall and Rise of Reginald Perrin
One Foot In The Grave
Monkey Dust
The IT Crowd
The Inbetweeners
The Vicar of Dibley
The Giles cartoons
Goodness Gracious Me and The Kumars at No 42, TV programme
featuring an Indian family, starring Sanjeev Bhaskar and Meera Syal
Come Dine With Me, reality cookery programme where eccentric cooks
and their guests are often mocked by narrator Dave Lamb
------------------------------------------------------
________ Adults and children

The 'war' between parents/teachers and their children, typified by:

The Beano and The Dandy, comics of publisher D C Thomson
Just William, books by Richmal Crompton
Molesworth books by Geoffrey Willans and illustrated by Ronald
Searle
St Trinian's books and films also originated by Ronald Searle
Kevin the Teenager and Perry in Harry Enfield and Chums
My Family, British TV Series
Outnumbered, British TV Series
The Fast Show, notably Competitive Dad
------------------------------------------------------
________ British class system

The British class system, especially pompous or dim-witted members of
the upper/middle classes or embarrassingly blatant social climbers,
typified by:

Jeeves and Wooster, books by P. G. Wodehouse (later played by Fry
and Laurie)
Dad's Army, comedy TV series
Mr. Bean, comedy TV series, Movie
Fawlty Towers, comedy TV series
Keeping Up Appearances, comedy TV series
You Rang, M'Lord?, comedy TV series
Absolutely Fabulous, comedy TV series
To the Manor Born, comedy TV series
Blackadder, comedy TV series
The New Statesman, political comedy TV series
Yes Minister, political comedy TV series
Red Dwarf, science fiction comedy TV series and novels
The Fast Show, notably Ted & Ralph and The 13th Duke of Wymbourne
sketches
Are You Being Served, department store comedy TV series
Monty Python's Upper Class Twit of the Year sketch
------------------------------------------------------
________ Lovable rogue

The lovable rogue, often from the impoverished working class, trying
to 'beat the system' and better himself, typified by:

Arthur Daley in Minder
The Andy Capp cartoon strip created by Reginald Smythe
The Likely Lads
Steptoe and Son
Rising Damp
Open All Hours
Only Fools and Horses comedy TV series (1981–2003) starring David
Jason as Del Trotter
Flashman books
Norman Wisdom
Porridge
Blackadder, comedy TV series
Red Dwarf, science fiction comedy TV series and novels
Black Books
The Fast Show, notably Chris the Crafty Cockney sketch
Run Fatboy Run
------------------------------------------------------
________ Embarrassment of social ineptitude

The embarrassment of social ineptitude, typified by:

Mr. Bean, comedy TV series starring Rowan Atkinson
The Office comedy TV series starring Ricky Gervais
Some Mothers Do 'Ave 'Em, comedy TV series starring Michael
Crawford
Alan Partridge, comedy TV series starring Steve Coogan
Count Arthur Strong, radio show
Extras
One Foot In The Grave, comedy TV series, 1990 to 2000
Peep Show TV series
Miranda, BBC TV comedy series from 2009, staring Miranda Hart
The Inbetweeners, Channel 4 comedy series detailing the last years
of high school for a group of unpopular teenage boys
------------------------------------------------------
________ Race and regional stereotypes

The An Englishman, an Irishman and a Scotsman joke format is one
common to many cultures, and is often used in English, including
having the nationalities switched around to take advantage of other
stereotypes. These stereotypes are somewhat fond, and these jokes
would not be taken as xenophobic, this sort of affectionate stereotype
is also exemplified by ‘Allo ‘Allo!, this programme, although set in
France in the second World War, and deliberately performed in over the
top accents, mocked British stereotypes as well as foreigners. This
also applies to a lot of the regional stereotypes in the UK. Regional
accent and dialect are used in such programmes as Hancock's Half Hour,
Auf Weidersehen, Pet and Red Dwarf, as such accents provide quick
characterisation and social cues.

Although racism was a part of British humour, it is now frowned upon,
and acts such as Bernard Manning and Jim Davidson are pilloried for
this. Most racist themes in popular comedy since the 1970’s are
targeted against the racist rather than in sympathy. Love Thy
Neighbour and Till Death Us Do Part were both series that dealt with
these issues when The United Kingdom was coming to terms with an
influx of immigrants. Fawlty Towers featured mistreatment of Spanish
waiter, Manuel, but the target was the bigotry of the lead character.
More recently, The Fast Show has mocked people of other races, notably
the Chanel 9 sketches, and Banzai has mimicked Japanese games shows,
with an exaggerated sense of violence, sex and public absurdity.
Goodness Gracious Me turned stereotypes on their heads in sketches
such as Going for an English and when bargaining over the price of a
newspaper.
------------------------------------------------------
________ Bullying and harsh sarcasm

Harsh sarcasm and bullying, though with the bully usually coming off
worse than the victim - typified by:

On the Buses, Arthur toward his wife, Olive
Blackadder, Edmund Blackadder toward his sidekick, Baldrick
The Young Ones, comedy TV series
Fawlty Towers, Basil Fawlty toward his waiter, Manuel
The New Statesman, satirising a domineering Conservative Member of
Parliament
The Thick of It, satirising the spin culture prevalent in Tony
Blair's heyday
Never Mind the Buzzcocks, satirical music based panel show
Mock The Week, satirical news based panel show
Black Books, where Bernard Black attacks his assistant, Manny
Bottom, in which Richie attacks Eddie with little or no
provocation, usually resulting in Eddie violently (often near-fatally)
retaliating.
The Ricky Gervais Show, Stephen Merchant and Ricky Gervais mocking
Karl Pilkington's unique outlook on life.
------------------------------------------------------
________ Parodies of stereotypes

Making fun of British stereotypes, typified by:

Beyond the Fringe
That Was the Week That Was (TW3), late night TV satire
Little Britain
The Fast Show
The Young Ones
Harry Enfield's Television Programme
French and Saunders
The Day Today
Brass Eye
Citizen Smith parodied the disaffected left-wing anarchist
Mind Your Language, late 1970s sitcom
Goodness Gracious Me
Monkey Dust
Blackadder
Monty Python
Hale and Pace
Ali G
------------------------------------------------------
________ Tolerance of, and affection for, the eccentric

Tolerance of, and affection for, the eccentric, especially when allied
to inventiveness

Heath Robinson cartoons
Professor Branestawm books
Wallace and Gromit animations
The Fall and Rise of Reginald Perrin, situation comedy starring
Leonard Rossiter
Morecambe and Wise, comedy show starring Eric Morecambe and Ernie
Wise
Last of the Summer Wine, the longest running TV comedy series in
the world. (Started 1973)
A Bit of Fry and Laurie, sketch show written by and starring
Stephen Fry and Hugh Laurie noted for its eccentric and inventive use
of language
The Vicar of Dibley, a sitcom in which Dawn French plays a female
vicar whose parishioners are archetypically eccentric and mad
QI or Quite Interesting, a panel game where points are given for
being quite interesting and points are taken away for being incorrect
in an obvious way.
The Fast Show, notably Rowley Birkin QC sketch
------------------------------------------------------
________ Pranks and Practical Jokes

Usually, for television, the performance of a practical joke on an
unsuspecting person whilst being covertly filmed.

Candid Camera
Beadle's About
Game for a Laugh
------------------------------------------------------
Art Neuendorffer

Mark Steese

unread,
Nov 30, 2011, 4:30:11 PM11/30/11
to
TomFoster <hedle...@hotmail.com> wrote in news:57e59adf-0868-41c9-
87bb-eb4...@r9g2000vbw.googlegroups.com:
Not at all. It's just that when Shakespeare wrote something, all he was
actually doing was editing a work that someone else had written and
adding nothing of his own. That's why all the works 'attributed' to
Shakespeare are so different: the wonderful title-page hypothesis proves
that by writing all of them, he wrote none of them. We know this to be
true because Shakespeare had no college education. Nobody's sure who the
true genius behind the canon was, but the one thing all the proposed
candidates have in common is a college education:

Claimant: University:
Francis Bacon Cambridge
William Stanley Oxford
Edward de Vere Oxford
Edward Dyer Oxford
Christopher Marlowe Cambridge
Thomas North Cambridge
Thomas Sackville Oxford

Inheriting or being granted a noble title would also help someone write
Shakespeare's plays, but Marlowe's example shows that all one really
needed was a college education. How could someone without a college
education ever create literature? It's preposterous.
--
One amateur theologian even swore that Death Valley was literally the
roof of the Biblical Hell and that he could hear the "wails of the
damned" crying out from the "Devil's Domain" below. -Richard E.
Lingenfelter

Bob Grumman

unread,
Nov 30, 2011, 5:49:51 PM11/30/11
to
A conspiracy is the use of an elaborate plan to produce by secret
means some effect in an event that is important to those involved in
it. Illegality/legality has nothing to do with it. It comes into a
discussion of conspiracies only because an attempt to produce an
effect illegally, and/or produce an illegal effect, will almost have
to involve a conspiracy whereas producing a desried effect that is
legal will much less likely require a conspiracy, using legal or
illegal methods. A proper definition would take a lot more words I'm
not up to. But common sense tells us all the schemes concealing
Shakespeare for a hundred or more years involve conspiracies in a
sense that Clemens's use of a pen-name, for example, was not.

--Bob

Bob Grumman

unread,
Nov 30, 2011, 6:02:23 PM11/30/11
to
> <pete...@rey.prestel.co.uk>
> <http://www2.prestel.co.uk/rey/index.htm>- Hide quoted text -
>
> - Show quoted text -

I think the SBT response is mainly propagandistic, but not the use of
the term "Shakespeare Authorship Conspiracy Theory," or what it was.
No authorship theory proposes that nothing happened except one man's
using another as a front, or using a pseudonym that happened to be
some real man's name. The less sane scenario tries to get by with a
comparatively simple conspiracy theory, the more insane scenario has
come up with the laughable idea of a passive conspiracy--the
agreement, somehow, of scores of people to be polite and not mention
who really wrote the works of Shakespeare, and make sure no evidence
that would reveal the hoax would be available for posterity. It all
goes without a hitch until Delia Bacon sneaks past the trust.

The passive conspiracy theory only came into being thirty or forty
years ago, when the smarter wacks realized that the conspiracy theory
they believed in was taking too much punishment from the sane.

--Bob

--Bob

book...@yahoo.com

unread,
Nov 30, 2011, 6:31:47 PM11/30/11