Thistles on Leg of Shakespeare Statue

This detail from the statue of Shakespeare in Westminster Abbey shows thistles carved on his legs. The monument was designed by Alexander Pope in 1741 to be embedded with symbols & watermarks from Bacon's books, thus subtly referring to Rosicrucianism and the true author of the Shakespeare plays. Pope said that,"Lord Bacon was the greatest genius that England or perhaps any other country has ever produced." The crossed legs allude to the Rosy Cross.