‘Anonymous’ International Trailer

Published 4 years ago by , Updated March 3rd, 2014 at 7:06 am,

Anonymous International Trailer Anonymous International Trailer

In Romeo and Juliet, William Shakespeare wrote the famous line: “What’s in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet.”

It’s a noble thought, but is it true? If you love the works of Shakespeare, would you still love them if you learned that Shakespeare himself was a fraud? That’s just one of the questions director Roland Emmerich is tackling in his new film, Anonymous, an interesting period drama which unravels the conspiracy behind who really wrote Shakespeare’s greatest works.

If you haven’t heard of Anonymous before, you may be scratching your head and asking, “Wait, Shakespeare didn’t write his plays?” Don’t worry, you haven’t been left out of the loop. Anonymous is simply a dramatic telling of a theory touted by a (small) handful of scholars. The story goes that Edward de Vere, the 17th Earl of Oxford, wrote Shakespeare’s plays as a way to gain political power with the masses.

If that doesn’t sound interesting to you, don’t forget that Roland Emmerich (Independence Day, 2012) is the director, which means there’s an outside chance for either an alien invasion or earth-shattering natural disaster. (Just kidding…kind of.)

We shared a teaser trailer for Anonymous in the spring, and the first full-length trailer for the film earlier this month. Today, we have a new international trailer for the film (via Sky.com). Check it out along with a full synopsis of the movie, below.

Experts have debated, books have been written, and scholars have devoted their lives to protecting or debunking theories surrounding the authorship of the most renowned works in English literature.”Anonymous” poses one possible answer, focusing on a time when cloak-and-dagger political intrigue, illicit romances in the Royal Court, and the schemes of greedy nobles hungry for the power of the throne were exposed in the most unlikely of places: the London stage.

Anonymous stars Rhys Ifans (Amazing Spider-Man) as the Earl of Oxford, Rafe Spall as William Shakespeare, and Vanessa Redgrave as Queen Elizabeth I.  The film hits theaters later this year on October 28th, after being pushed back from March.

Source: Sky

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  1. Big deal. When someone makes a film about Percy Shelley being the true author of the novel “Frankenstein,” then I’ll get excited.

  2. Ugh as a fan of the great Shakespeare i can’t help, but feel a little sick that this movie is being made at all. How many of the mindless masses will think this is a true story of some kind and actually believe Shakespeare didn’t write his works? Way to help tarnish the legacy of one of the greatest writers of all time hollywood.

    • While it’s not exactly my cup of tea, at least it’s an original and interesting idea. Better this than “Sorry”,”Simon Says” or “Lincoln Logs” the movie!

      • I have to agree with the original idea. So many movies nowadays are elementary in writing and plots or just plan bad for the sake of making a buck. Looking forward to seeing this one. I don’t believe the story to be true but a good story it will be.

    • it’s hysterical that people are up in arms that “Immortals” doesn’t follow the letter-of-the-law on mythology, yet there are actually people on this forum who are saying that THIS piece of fictitious tripe might be “interesting” and that it’s “about time the truth” were told????

      Shakespeare wrote the plays. That’s a simple and undeniable fact.

      Anything else is bullsh**.

      There is NO factual support whatsoever for any allegations that he did not write his plays. The supposed “scholars” who claim there is any question of his authorship are falsifying information and making claims that totally lack support.

      • Why do you lie? There is a good deal of good scholarship that first Shakespeare did not write anything and interesting studies pointing to several other possible authors.

        • GJP why do you lie?

          The so called evidence that he didn’t write his work is about as respectable as the so called evidence that Area 51 is some big alien hideout.

          There is zero CREDIBLE evidence that he didn’t write HIS works. In fact the Area 51 BS has more credibility.

          There is zero actual EVIDENCE that he didn’t write it. Key word Evidence.

          • Two words Phillip Marlowe.

            • You want to get a private eye on the case?

      • Methinks thou dost protest too much!

      • It’s funny to see some of the crazy nut jobs we get on this site.

        Any credible expert will tell you that there is no Hard evidence. No evidence at all in fact. Just rumors and hear say. The reason this BS rumor never made it big or even got seriously considered. Because it’s BS and because no one of any merit or credibility was dumb enough to believe it. Actual research has been done and proven that there is no evidence to support this conspiracy.

        I’m surprised you took the time to comment shouldn’t you be folding your tin foil hats and getting ready for 2012?

        • Sorry brother you will have to do better than schoolyard ridicule. I call your bluff–what was that meritorious and credible evidence that Shakspere of Stratford–whose parents and children were illiterates, who couldn’t sign his name, who in court couldn’t remember the year he was born, who knocked up his wife and tried to declare that he was married to someone else so he wouldn’t have to marry her, who left wife and family for half a decade, who had one lifelong ambition–getting money any way he could, who was therefore the butt of satire in the Parnassus Plays and Jonson’s Every Man Out of His Humor, who applied for gentleman status and then his case was investigated for bribery, who was never singled out as a writer of any kind by anyone in his lifetime, whose death was noted in Stratford as it was in all of England, by the national nightfall march to their privies–was this really the guy who wrote thirty-six plays, two epic poems, and 154 Sonnets, all from the vantage-point of a highly placed aristocrat that would have gotten a commoner executed? Let’s have that evidence please. On the other hand 349 out of a thousand of de Vere’s personally underlined bible passages reappear in the works of Shakespeare. That looks like evidence of authorship to me. .349 is a very good batting average. Ten Italian plays with specifically known landmarks, routes, customs, means of travel, provincial disputes, and works of literary and pictoral art turn out to be precisely those places in Italian cities he visited in 1575-6. That’s a world-class co-incidence isn’t it? Why did 3,000 words coined by “Shakespeare” come from French, Italian, Spanish, Hebrew, Greek, and Russian–all of which de Vere knew well. Now how many languages, other than Warwickshire, did Shakspere speak? Tell me about them. The movie Anonymous has grabbed one of the great cultural firecrackers of English and American culture, and if it is a dud of a movie, there is plenty more in this topic to blow everybody’s mind. The big political lie that becomes the respectable historical truth didn’t start with George Bush and his pack of thieves.

          • I said there was no evidence that he didn’t write it not that there was absolute proof he did write it. Burden of proof is on you and this long over sized paragraph proves nothing. It’s a lot of speculation and nothing more.

            • Kind of abandoned your original assertions, didn’t you?–”There is no hard evidence, no evidence at all in fact,” and “Actual research has been done and proven that there is no evidence to support this conspiracy” [that Oxford wrote the Shakespeare canon]. I showed the evidence and called for yours. Now you say there is no evidence Shakspere DIDN’T write the Shakespeare canon. Yes there is. I gave it. If A writes something, B didn’t. Of course the fact that Shakspere was illiterate is evidence he didn’t write the Shakespeare canon. Of course the fact that he didn’t (couldn’t/had no interest to) leave England proves he wasn’t the author of the geographically and culturally detailed Italian plays. Someone did, could, wanted to, not him. Of course 349 underlined Bible passages showing up in the Shakespeare canon’s (500+) Bible references constitutes hard evidence the writer referred to that Bible. All these facts were convincing to five Supreme Court justices, who know something about evaluating evidence, but to you they just aren’t good enough. Never will be. Because you arbitrarily deny they are facts. Like saying the burden of proof is on the other guy, (why, if yours is so good?) it is another way of running from knowledge.

              • I didn’t abandon or change any thing. The line you quoted was exactly what I said to you again.

                You think what you gave me was evidence? That was hear say. It was opinion. It was rumors. None of it was evidence. Have you ever been in an actual court room? The judge would look at your so called evidence and throw the case out on lack of merit alone. Do you know what Evidence is or do you just think anything said is evidence?

                Speculation, Rumors, Hear say, and opinions is not evidence. It’s actually worthless and proves nothing. The only thing those things have achieved is getting a bunch of innocent people burned during the witch trials. Your so called evidence is the same kind of evidence that was used to kill all those innocent so called ‘witches’ thank goodness you are not a judge.

                • “Have you ever been in an actual courtroom?”

                  Well, my case became the precedent in Title VII law, and the Supreme Court endorsed its language 9-0.

                  Two of the same justices ruled that if Shakspere were tried on the charge of writing the Shakespeare canon, he’d walk.

                  Maybe they’re biased and uninformed and don’t know evidence when they see it.

  3. I just want to know how the White House is going to get destroyed! ;-)

  4. Love period pieces and the twist on historical “Fact” is always a great touch. There has been a lot of discussions and much effort to determine if Shakespear, a man with no record of schooling and the son of a common man, was able to write plays. Whether you believe it or not it adds flavor.

  5. I notice that so far only William Ray has used his full name. So those who find it preposterous that the real author of Shakespeare’s works used a pen name are not using their own actual names. Hm.

    • In fairness, I used my real first name and included a link to my website which includes not only my first and last name, but a (quite attractive) photo of myself.

      I find it interesting that you — at your website (“Oxfreudian” — not a bad portmanteau) — cite Sigmund Freud of all people as an expert on Shakespeare authorship. If de Vere really was Shake-speare, then what does that do to Mr. Freud’s interpretations of the plays, in particular let’s say “Hamlet,” about which Mr. Freud wrote,

      “I find the statement that the drama was composed immediately after the death of Shakespeare’s father
      (1601)- that is to say, when he was still mourning his loss, and during a revival, as we may fairly assume, of his
      own childish feelings in respect of his father. It is known, too, that Shakespeare’s son, who died in childhood,
      bore the name of Hamnet (identical with Hamlet). Just as Hamlet treats of the relation of the son to his
      parents, so Macbeth, which was written about the same period, is based upon the theme of childlessness.”

      There’s at least as much evidence of Mr. de Vere’s authorship within the texts of Mr. Shakespeare’s plays as there is evidence within the original text of the novel “Frankenstein” that Percy Shelley was the actual author. Actually, if you give me a first edition of “Walsingham” and 15 minutes, I could probably find you plenty of textual evidence that it was Ann Radcliffe, and not Mary Robinson, that actually wrote it.

      • Clever rapartee of the armchair variety, but dig just an inch deeper in your library for Freud’s change of view based on new insight about the very controversy you mention. He said when receiving the Goethe Prize in 1930:

        “And yet there is no doubt that…biography does satisfy a powerful need in us. We feel this very distinctly if the legacy of history unkindly refuses the satisfaction of this need–for example in the case of Shakespeare. It is undeniably painful to all of us that even now we do not know who was the author of the Comedies, Tragedies, and Sonnets of Shakespeare; whether it was in fact the untutored son of the provincial citizen of Stratford, who attained a modest position as an actor in London, or whether it was, rather, the nobly-born and highly cultivated, passoinately wayward, to some extent declasse aristocrat Edward de Vere, Seventeenth Earl of Oxford, hereditary Lord Great Chamberlain of England.” Later he wrote outright, “I am almost convinced that in fact Edward de Vere, Earl of Oxford, is concealed behind this [Shakespeare] pseudonym.”

        Freud must have been one of the tin-foil kooks dismissed here and there in this blog. In the eighth edition of Interpretation of Dreams, (1930) he withdrew the Hamlet explanation he had made in 1899 and which is quoted above. Some people do learn, the greatest of us a lot, when relevant information shows up. His editors and translator had a cow about his change of view, quite out of his field, so Freud, near death in those years, agreed to downplay it. This was Freud the psychoanalyst brilliantly seeing into the truth of a literary and historical question. He was right on the identity, but it wouldn’t have sold any books just then.

        As far as the snide comparison of Oxford’s Shakespeare authorship versus Shelley writing his sister’s book, take it and fly in the park; you are in no position to declare whether and how much evidence there is for the Oxford hypothesis, since it is obvious you know nothing in that area but hasty generalizations. Freud and numerous other intellectuals and artists didn’t have to wait to be told by their mommies and daddies something was missing in the Stratford fable. If we are lucky, time is finally running out for that silly wretched little counterfeit of history.

  6. HISTORY has always and will always stay HIS STORY. It is not a secret that HISTORY has always been written by the WINNERS. I am not saying that the movie is right but everyone knows that there cannot be smoke without fire… :)

  7. Ricky Sprague is correct that he made no real attempt to conceal his full name. My point is simply that current convention on the internet is reviving the anonymity and use of pseudonyms that was common in Elizabethan publishing. Back then, most plays were published without the author’s real name. Noblemen rarely published poetry under their own names during their lifetime. Several recent books have proven that scholars of Elizabethan literature have been ignoring these facts, which has enlarged their humongous blind spot for the likelihood that “Shake-seare” was a pen name.

  8. Daniel F. thinks the “burden of proof” is on Oxfordians. Why? Tradition, I suppose. The problem is that this assumption– which has pervaded the authorship debate– embodies the deductive reasoning of Aristotle and the medieval Church. That is, it begins with a premise that is assumed to be true (“Shakespeare wrote Shakespeare”), and goes from there. The Renaissance gave us inductive reasoning, which instead begins with an unbiased examination of the evidence. Once Stratfordians give up their dogmatic insistence on upholding tradition and we look at all the evidence, the contest as to authorship isn’t even close.

    • The shift in the burden of proof has nothing whatsoever to do with tradition, deductive reasoning, Artistotle or the medieval Church. The case starts with evidence in the historical record from which a presumption is then drawn. In this particular case, the burden of proof rests with the Oxfordians because of the fact that there is more than sufficient documentary, physical, direct evidence to constitute a prima facie case in support of the Stratfordian attribution. Such evidence establishes a rebuttable presumption that Master W. Shakespeare of Stratford wrote the Shakespeare literary works. Since the historical evidence satisfies the initial burden of proof, the burden then shifts to the Oxfordians to rebut the presumption in favor of the Stratfordian case and, additionally, to prove their own case. The problem for Oxfordians is that there exists no direct evidence whatsoever in support of their claim. All of the Oxfordian evidence, if it can even be termed that [I doubt that any of the testimony of Oxfordian "authorities" could even meet the Daubert standard] is made up of subjective speculation and the ambiguation of otherwise unambiguous documents. The burden of proof rests with Oxfordians not because of tradition but because of evidence.

  9. Welliwell,

    William J Ray and Richard M Waugaman up to their old tricks again. Every time I research Anonymous reviews they are there. Pushing the old chestnuts of nobody from nowhereville who couldn”t even write his name and bribed his way to a coat of arms.
    Most disingenuous of all is that William makes it sound as if Oxford won the debates in Court. That is plain not true. The judges, despite the two who switched later, ruled in favour of Shakespeare of Stratford writing the plays. I repeat no moot court has ruled in favour of anyone other than SHakespeare of Stratford being the author of his plays and poems.

    The burden of proof is on the shoulders of the conspiracists Richard. Tradition?! What kind of moron accepts tradition? All 77 different candidates are under a burden of proof that their guy or gal actually wrote the plays and siphoned them onto posterity through WS somehow.

    Our guy sits on the throne which rightly he created. He had no idea that his works, even the 18 plays and 2 poems printed and reprinted in his lifetime would make him the Bard. Richard Burbage knew his characters would make an actor famous. He never says a word that Will Sh wasn’t Sh.

    As for no evidence of him being a writer by his contemporaries? You do know the Shakspere Allusion Book? The wiki sh authorship page gives a small sampling of those who knew and recognized him as author. Like Thomas Heywood:

    Heywood affectionately notes the nicknames his fellow playwrights had been known by. Of Shakespeare, he writes:

    Our modern poets to that pass are driven,
    Those names are curtailed which they first had given;
    And, as we wished to have their memories drowned,
    We scarcely can afford them half their sound. …
    Mellifluous Shake-speare, whose enchanting quill
    Commanded mirth or passion, was but Will.

    Not to mention William Basse, Heminges and Condell, Jonson, Leonard Digges, Michael Drayton, Drummond of Hawthornden. All of these are contemporary writers. But hey they were all coerced into saying what they said right? People don”t believe the hype. We’re all being played.

  10. No tricks necessary brother. Stevens, Blackmun, and Brennan all decided that the traditional attribution to Shakspere of Stratford did not have sufficient evidence to make it reasonable to think he wrote the Shakespeare canon. O’Connor, Scalia, and Powell stated the same. This ploy that the burden of proof is on the challenger is dishonest arguing. If Jefferson were proven unable to have written the Declaration of Independence, that is sufficient grounds for investigation. We would not be required to also simultaneously prove who else wrote it. In the case of Shakspere and Oxford, we have the boon that the one was a ploy for the other and why.

    Regret to say that Heywood’s tribute was not to Shakspere of Stratford. The final rhyme, “Mellifluous Shake-speare” is a subtle cue that he was referring to a pseudonym. Pseudonyms usually featured a hyphen. the last phrase, “…was but Will”, makes perfect sense when one realizes, as the educated class did, that to “will, wish, desire” in Italian was “avere”, an anagram of Vere. Otherwise it is a meaningless play on the stage nickname, Will Shake-speare. There was no traceable subtextual reference to William Shakspere of Stratford. William Basse, Heminges and Condell, Leonard Digges, and Michael Drayton were all either colleagues of Jonson or employees and acquaintances of the Herbert brothers who sponsored the First Folio and were noted as its dedicatees. They had been followers and in-laws of Edward de Vere, 17th Earl of Oxford. You will get the point after a while, if you keep asking good questions.

  11. My Lord William,

    You certainly know so much about Oxford’s raison d’etre’s. You see what you did again right? I offered the use of Will in sonnets 135 + 136 as a pun on the author”s name and you changed it into how Oxford and Elizabeth’s relationship was developing. Whilst we smugly get it wrong, you are privy to their innermost thoughts. How do you do that?

    And the pie is there for everyone. it consists of between 36-42 contested plays, 2 long narrative poems, and 154 sonnets. It’s an all you can eat open buffet 24.7.365. The name of the cook is irrelevant to enjoying it.

    Mind you in your scenario you can add several other writers works to that list. I have enough on my plate.

  12. Shakespeare’s signatures are not proof that he was unable to write.

    Shakespeare’s name was pronounced the same as the name on the title pages, whether or not the name was hyphenated as it sometimes was, and there is documentary evidence that proves this claim.

    There is no evidence that the name on the title pages was a pseudonym, and no evidence that de Vere was ever known as the Spear-shaker, or anything even close. In fact, there is direct, contemporaneous, documentary evidence that ties the author of the works specifically to William Shakespeare of Stratford.

    Certain documents, including some of the title pages that were publsihed after the grant of arms to Shakespeare’s father, specifically identify the author as Master or Mr. William Shakespeare, Gent. [Oxfordians must assume the timing on this is merely coincidental, I suppose], The one and only William Shakespeare of Stratford is the only documented William Shakespeare in all of Elizabethan England entitled to be addressed as “Mr.” or “Master”, and is the only one who was permitted to be called a “Gentleman”, according to the College of Arms. There is no lack of specificity, as the title pages and other documents are quite specific in identifying the author by use of the honorific/form of address/social status. The title pages do not lead away from WS of Stratfrod to any other candidate; in fact, they lead directly to him.

    Following are the literary references which use the honorific and/or status:

    (1.) 1599 (From The Returne from Parnassus, Part I; MS in Bodleian Library): “Mr. Shakspeare” [more than once]

    (2.) 1600 (Stationer’s Register entry for Henry the Fourth, Part Two and Much Ado About Nothing; August 23): “master Shakespere”

    (3.) 1607 (Stationer’s Register entry for King Lear; November 26): “Master William Shakespeare”

    (4.)1608 (Q1 of King Lear): “M. William Shak-speare” (title page) “M William Shak-speare” (head title)

    (5.) 1610 (From The Scourge of Folly by John Davies of Hereford; registered October 8): “Mr. Will: Shake-speare”

    (6.) 1612 (From “Epistle” to The White Devil by John Webster): “M. Shake-speare”

    (7.) 1614 (From Runne and a Great Cast by Thomas Freeman): “Master W. Shakespeare”

    (8.) 1615 (From continuation to 1614 in ed. 5 of John Stow’s Annales, by Edmund Howes): “M. Willi. Shakespeare gentleman”

    (9.) 1616 (Q6 Lucrece): “Mr. William Shakespeare” (title page)

    (10.) 1619 (Title page, Q3 (Pavier quarto) of Henry VI Parts 2 & 3): “William Shakespeare, Gent.”

    (11.) 1619 (Title page, Q2 of King Lear, falsely dated 1608): “M. William Shake-speare”

    (12.) 1619 (Head title of Q2 of King Lear): “M. William Shake-speare”

    (13.) 1622 (Catalogus Universalis pro Nundinis Francofurtensibus; Frankfort book fair list of books to be published in England between April and October 1622): “M. William Shakespeare”

    (14.) 1623 (Stationer’s Register entry for First Folio; November 8): “Mr. William Shakspeer”

    Here are some of the other references to WS of Stratford as “Mr.” Shakespeare, gent.

    (1.) 1601 (Deed transfering the Globe and other Southwark properties from Nicholas Brend to Sir Matthew Brown and John Collett as security for a 2500-pound debt; October 7): “Richard Burbadge and William Shackspeare gent.”

    (2.) 1601 (Updated deed for the above transaction; October 10): “Richard Burbage and William Shakspeare gentlemen”

    (3.) 1608 (Deed transferring the Globe and other properties from John Collett to John Bodley; November 11): “Richard Burbadge & William Shakespeare gent”

    There is no lack of specificity, as the title pages and other documents are quite specific in identifying the author by use of the honorific/form of address/social status. The title pages do not lead away from WS of Stratford or to any other candidate; in fact, they lead directly to him.

    The grant of the coat of arms to Shakespeare’s father generates even more evidence that links that authorship of the works to WS of Stratford, this time in the words of William Camden. One of the Heralds, Ralph Brooke, challenged a number of grants of coats of arms, including that which was awarded to Shakespeare’s father. Thomas A. Pendleton summarizes as follows:
    “But the matter impinges on the Oxfordian claim far more severely. For the Clarenceux King who collaborated on the reply to Brooke’s accusation was William Camden, not just the foremost antiquary of the time, but also Ben Jonson’s master at the Westminster School and his life-long intimate friend. Camden was also on friendly terms with Lord Burleigh, Elizabeth’s most trusted minister, Oxford’s long-suffering father-in-law, and, it is sometimes supposed, the executive director of the Great Concealment. Camden was, in fact, selected by Burleigh to write the more or less official history of Elizabeth’s reign, and was given access to the government’s records and correspondence to do so. Given Camden’s interests, expertise, and connections, he would have known the secret of the Shakespeare plays, if there was one to know. Yet in Remaines (1605), Camden names “William Shakespeare” as one of the poets of his time “whom succeeding ages may justly admire.” … Camden, like other contemporaries, speaks of Shakespeare not as the transcendental genius of his time, but as one talented writer among many. The comment, however, has far more significance. The mere form is significant: Camden names ten poets and concludes with an et cetera: “and other most pregnant wits of these our times.” Shakespeare is the tenth and last specified; and, thus, since there is no measurable rhetorical difference between either nine or ten specifics before a final et al, Camden must honestly have thought Shakespeare one of the age’s most pregnant wits, or, alternatively, he was guilty of a most incoherent and gratuitous falsehood. Even more important, since he had, as Clarenceux King, responded less than three years earlier to Brooke’s attack on the grant of arms to the father of “Shakespeare ye Player” — it may well have been more recent, the preface of Remaines claims it was completed two years before publication — Camden thus was aware that the last name on his list was that of William Shakespeare of Stratford. The Camden reference, therefore, is exactly what the Oxfordians insist does not exist: an identification by a knowledgeable and universally respected contemporary that “the Stratford man” was a writer of sufficient distinction to be ranked with (if after) Sidney, Spenser, Daniel, Holland, Jonson, Campion, Drayton, Chapman, and Marston. And the identification even fulfills the eccentric Oxfordian ground-rule that it be earlier than 1616.”

    So, according to no less an authority than William Camden, the son of John Shakespeare of Stratford, Mr. William Shakespeare of Stratford, Gentleman, was the same man as the actor (ye player) and was the same man who was “a writer of sufficient distinction” to be included among a list of other great writers of the day. As I’ve stated before, there is a wealth of evidence for the Stratfordian attribution.

    Shakespeare was not the butt of satire in the Parnassus plays. In fact, in The Return to Parnassus, Part 2, Act 1, Scene 2 where Judicio, the critic, is passing judgment on various of the poetic worthies of the day, we read:

    William Shakespeare.
    Judicio. Who loues not Adons loue, or Lucrece rape?
    His sweeter verse contaynes hart throbbing line,
    Could but a grauer subiect him content,
    Without loues foolish lazy languishment.

    The Parnassus authors are not ridiculing Shakespeare — far from it.

    Furthermore, in The Return from Parnassus, Part 1, the character of Gullio is a thinly-veiled caricature of Southampton and is depicted as being smitten with the works of Shakespeare, going so far as to state that he will get a picture of Shakespeare to hang in his study at court and will sleep with Shakespeare’s Venus & Adonis under his pillow. Although Oxfordians often argue that the students who put on the plays were in the know as to the Oxfordian secret, the Shakespeare represented in the play is not de Vere. In fact, there appears to be a completely separate reference to Oxford when Gullio declares that an earl had been trying to get him to marry his daughter but that he had declined [which is factually what happened between Oxford and Southampton].

    I could go on, supplying even more documentary evidence for the Stratfordian attribution [and more evidence knocking down the unsupported claims of certain Oxfordian carriers of disinformation]. However, having set forth just some of the particulars of a prima facie case, I wonder if an Oxfordian here would be so kind as to provide a rebuttal, referencing any piece of direct, physical evidence in support of the Oxfordian claim – evidence, that is, of the same kind and quality as that which exists in support of the Stratfordian attribution, and not just speculation, inference or subjectively biased analysis of some document from Shakespeare’s day.

    • It is a pity that Mr. Johnson has expended so much energy in his quest to quash criticisms of the Shakspere claim to having authored the works of Shakespeare. Most unfortunate is his assumption that this is a summary judgment court case, in which someone must be either prima facie guilty or innocent of charges. But since Mr. Johnson insists let us attempt to ask Shakspere himself if he is or was ever Shakespeare. Not only did Shakspere never claim to be the author, or claim payment for the Shakespeare plays, or claim to be a writer, or leave any evidence of writing or fame, neither did anyone in his family makes those claims, nor anyone in his town, either before, at, or after his death. That is an enormous gap of supposedly reasonably available evidence. We are led to the inevitable conclusion, something is wrong with this story. The more we study it, the more questionable it becomes.

      To take a single example, because I have to work today, Mr. Johnson’s reliance on William Camden as proof that Shakspere was Shakespeare will have to be shown faulty. Camden was indeed an eminent historian who wrote an official history of the time, under the sponsorship of the Cecils. He did indeed supervise the granting of Gentleman status at one time. He knew of Shakspere and he knew Oxford, the Great Oxford according to James I, a play enthusiast. Camden indeed opined that ‘Shakespeare’ was a pregnant wit (mind) of the time. Camden also published antiquarian works, several editions of them, regarding notable people of the towns and regions of England. Neither before nor after Shakspere’s death did any Camden antiquary edition note that Shakspere was a famous person of Stratford or that Shakespeare lived there. If Stratford Shakspere were the great Shakespeare, this would have been a highly questionable omission on Camden’s part. But Camden knew the lay of the land. He knew Shakspere was not Shakespeare. The dog did not bark. If you hear him barking, I believe you do. But it is not on record he did.

      William Ray

  13. An absolutely superb summation of a case based on no evidence. Mr. Johnson pulled out his ace in the whole, the Holy Trinity Church Stratford Monument as evidence Shakspere was recognized by his townsmen, but which has been proven a fraud. (See Richard H. Whalen, The Oxfordian/8) He has offerred the First Folio introductory matter, compiled (if we believe the style throughout) by Ben Jonson who absolutely detested William Shakspere and put it in print for all time. The other testifiers were friends of Jonson or former employees of the dedicatees, the Herbert brothers. They were followers and in-laws of Edward de Vere, 17th Earl of Oxford,not admirers of Shakspere. William Herbert waited years to become Lord Chamberlain of Revels in order to have the control to publish Oxford’s canon. Mr. Johnson finally offers that Shakspere equals the great Shakespeare on the basis of title pages, which are made of paper in an era of pseudonyms. He also holds that though neither Shakspere nor his family nor his townsmen nor historian William Camden ever made specific reference to him as the Stratford citizen who wrote the Shakespeare canon, that is inadmissable evidence. I am afraid the game is up. Summary judgment determines insufficient prima facie evidence to proceed with Shakspere as the Soul of the Age. But if Mr. Johnson believes his case, and the works of Shakespeare are more meaningful and richer and more vivid under the impression they came from a Warwickshire money-lender, so what? They could have, in the sense that talent and character can come from anybody anywhere.

    Speaking for myself in regard to Mr. Johnson’s sneering reference that the postman has to look out when the dog barks, I’m proud of having been a rural carrier and having defended people mistreated in our little office, and despite going through much retaliation having achieved a precedent against such intimidation, in the Supreme Court 9-0. The only thing that carried me through was I trusted in truth and justice. Believe it or not, they do triumph. They will in this case too. The film’s creators and cast deserve a lot of credit for believing so.

  14. Well William,
    You are a thoroughly dogged and determined opponent. Quite clearly you will not accept any evidence offered, nor judge that same on its merits. Rather attack its lack thereof with dubious ungrounded arguments.
    This last set of replies to Mark Johnson shows a complete lack of ability to argue along accepted lines. But hey you reject these accepted arguments because you need Oxford’s status to be the one true (yea verily) Shakespeare. Despite that it adds nothing to the appreciation of Sh’s works.
    Go for it! But wherever you are in comment threads, and you are ubiquitous, I for one will be back defending the honour of my candidate whose mellifluous honey tongued works still as ever contain his name as the true author. What a fool was Oxford to have given up his name like that!

  15. Only in the world of Oxfordians can a case that is built on documentary and other physical evidence be termed “a case based on no evidence.” The Monument is not an ace in the hole, nor is one needed. There is an accumulation of pieces of evidence [such as the various contemporaneous documents I listed, with their specific references to William Shakespeare of Stratford – documents Mr. Ray chose to ignore] that fit together to establish a prima facie case for the Stratfordian attribution. Unfortunately for Mr. Ray’s there is no evidence of that kind or quality for his chosen Lord, nothing at all that is as relevant or carries the same probative weight. Mr. Ray is reduced to argument by authority as to the Monument [even the anti-Stratfordian Diana Price has shot down the theory that it is a fraud, and other authorities can be cited against that specious argument – and I note that Mr., Ray did not address the fact that poetic works of the time reference the Stratford Monument, corroborating the fact that it was erected for the author].

    Mr. Ray states that Jonson “absolutely detested” Shakespeare, contradicting what Jonson himself said in his private diary [*Timber*], but Mr. Ray seems to have a penchant for speculating as to what people did four hundred years ago and he appears to claim to be able to divine their motives for doing so. Mr. Ray’s statement that I am relying on title pages is erroneous and is an incredibly simplistic reading of a much more nuanced argument; it isn’t just that his name is on the title pages and other relevant documents, but that the man from Stratford is specifically identified in those documents by the use of an honorific/social status designator that, due to the grant of the coat of arms to his family, could only be applicable to that particular William Shakespeare from Stratford. It would help if Oxfordians would argue against the propositions that are actually made rather than arguing against the claims they choose to say have been made. I have said nothing about any of Mr. Ray’s negative claims being inadmissible, but I would have to say that they are not evidence, and I do doubt that they would get past a Daubert motion. And, of course, I also would not agree that “neither Shakspere nor his family nor his townsmen nor historian William Camden ever made specific reference to him as the Stratford citizen who wrote the Shakespeare canon.” Again, Mr. Ray is arguing with straw men of his own creation. I’m not sure why Oxfordians have to have their one true Lord as the author of the works in order for them to be “more meaningful and richer and more vivid,” but that romantic notion and an emotional animosity toward William Shakespeare of Stratford appear to be the motivation for their claims. I’m still waiting for Mr. Ray to rebut the evidence for the Stratfordian case or mount a case, based on actual evidence, for his candidate’s claim.

    Finally, Mr. Ray is incorrect in his speculation that I was “sneering” at his career as a postman, or at his taking credit for the work of his lawyers. I’m truly sorry he took my attempt at a humorous departure from this thread in the wrong way. With that, I really am done here. It is quite obvious that there can be no debate based on actual evidence when one side is presenting such evidence and the other side is indulging in blatant speculation and unsupported ambiguation [Mr. Sutton is absolutely correct in his summation of the state of the “debate” here]. Now, I’m off to my appointed rounds.

  16. Ah they do go on.

    Have a good day,

    William Ray

  17. LOL.