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Christie Waldman

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  1. I just posted a comment to the Shakespeare Authorship Roundtable Facebook page, Nov. 13, 2023, where they posted a link to an 8-year-old TED talk on youtube. I wrote, "On stylometrics, I believe it would be appropriate to mention Dr. Barry R. Clarke's 2019 book, "Francis Bacon's Contribution to Shakespeare: A New Attribution Method" (New York: Routledge, 2019). Clarke has a Ph.D. in Shakespeare authorship studies from Brunel University. His Ph.D. thesis can be read online as well. Here is his website. https://barryispuzzled.wordpress.com/. He was interviewed by Steve Sable on "Don't Quill the Messenger" in Sept. 2023. https://dontquillthemessenger.libsyn.com/the-physics-of... at Dragon Wagon Radio ("The Physics of Bacon")." I had missed this before. I was just at the SAR website. There are still some factual inaccuracies in their blurb on Bacon. They had changed some of their errors (like saying Bacon had a law degree from the University of Cambridge), but they (anachronistically) still say he obtained a law degree when Gray's Inn did not award law degrees in 1582. Studying law at Gray's Inn then was different from what law school is like today. The accurate statement would be that he was admitted to the bar as an utter barrister in 1582. Being admitted to the bar is not at all the same thing as "graduating from law school." Also anachronistically, the SAR website calls Bacon a "lecturer" at Gray's Inn, but studying law at Gray's Inn was not like law school today. "Reader" at Gray's Inn in 1587 did not mean "lecturer" in common British academic parlance. It meant he had given a "reading," which was a special event, a lecture on a legal statute, followed by a sumptuous banquet the reader hosted for the Queen and other dignitaries, at great personal expense. Bacon gave his reading in 1587 (not 1588, the date the SAR gave for when he was made lecturer) and his second in 1600. The reading was made during the Lent Vacation. There was no one who wanted to do a reading during the 1600 Lent Vacation, so Bacon did a second one. (See my book, Francis Bacon's Hidden Hand in Shakespeare's 'The Merchant of Venice' (New York: Algora Publishing, 2018), 109, 111 (citing Margaret McGlynn, The Royal Perogative and the Learning of the Inns of Court" (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2004), pp. 17, 25, 22-23). Also, the SAR blurb says Bacon first became a member of Parliament in 1584. However, he sat in Parliament for Bossing in Cornwall in 1581. (Daniel R. Coquillette, appendix 1, (from the Dictionary of National Biography), Francis Bacon (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1992), pp. 311-312, 314. Worse, they dismiss the significance of the Northumberland Manuscript. "In 1867, a document that was to become one of the most valuable regarding the authorship riddle was discovered. The “Northumberland Manuscript”, found in the house of the Duke of Northumberland contains 22 sheets of notes from 1596, where Bacon’s name is listed along with Shakespeare’s, several times." https://www.shakespeareauthorship.org/francis-bacon. And that is all they had to say about the Northumberland Manuscript. There is plenty of good reading material on the Northumberland Manuscript to be found by doing a search for it here at this SirBacon website. I wrote to them about these things in December, 2022, and received a rather haughty email back from Rima Lyn, Treasurer and Webmaster on Dec. 18, 2022, refusing to make further changes. And yet, they claim to be unbiased. If someone points you to documentation that what you have written is factually in error, do you not have an obligation to address it and correct your errors? We need to care about inaccuracies in the record. They contribute to the problem, not the solution, of the authorship controversy. As we know, Francis Bacon said we have to get the foundation right in order to build properly. He was building the foundation for the future of learning. It is okay to make mistakes. That is how we learn. But we should be willing to admit our errors and fix them. Did you know the SAR bookclub read Winkler's book as its fall selection? The book that treats the case for Bacon largely as if it were of historical interest only?
  2. I read his book last February and sent him my comments. Correction: it was in April, not February, and we engaged in email conversations about his book into the first week of May.
  3. So, the EEBO Early English Corpora does not capture all uses (limited to printed books and broadsides within its date range, and even so doesn't catch everything), but I did a search for "Tidder" and for "Tudor" here https://www.english-corpora.org/eebo/ . The EEBO groups them by decades. First, "Tidder." In the 1620's there were four uses and in the 1670's six. In the 1620's they list four in a 1629 edition of Bacon's Henry the 7th. In the 1670's there were these: 1674, A collection of English words ... by John Ray, giving a meaning of "soon, quickly, sooner." 1676, An English dictionary explaining the difficult terms ... by Elisha Colones (check name), giving a meaning of "titillation, tickling, titter, tidder, tider, soon, quickly, titulation." 1676, The history of the reigns of Henry 7, 8,Edward 6,Queen Mary (the first book by Bacon, the other 3 by the Rt. Hon. and Rt. Rev. Francis Godwyn, Lord Biship of Hereford. Lists as authors Bacon, Francis Godwyn, and Morgan Godwyn 1602 or 3 - 1645. The example of "tidder" given is from Bacon's History of Henry 7. For "Tudor": There were 18 in 1597, Michael Drayton, England's heroical epistle ... In 1603, there were sixteen uses in England's To the Majesty of King James. In 1605, Poems by Michael Drayton, 12 uses. 1611, A brief chronicle of the ... by Anthony Munday. 1612, A crowne garland ... by Richard Johnson. 1612, Poly-Olbion by Michael Drayton. [Albion? Alban?] 1615, Essays and characters ... by John Stephens. There were 14 uses in 1620 in a work by Richard Johnson. 2 uses in 1622 in The second part, or a continuance of Poly-Olbion, by Michael Drayton. 2 uses in 1622, A chorographical description ... by Michael Drayon. 2 uses in 1625, Mikrokosmos ... by Peter Heylyn, "augmented and revised." So, overall, for Tudor, the EEBO shows 18 uses in the 1590's, 30 in first decade of the 1600's, 7 in the 1610's, 20 in the 1620's, 6 in the 1630's, 11 in 1640, 9 in 1650, 119 in 1660's, 180 in 1670's, 21 in 1680's, and 32 in the 1690's. "Uses" could be in the same work, and who knows if names of authors are real or pseudonyms. It is all worth taking a closer look at. Also, one might look in Shakespeare at references to "winds" and "tides," possibly, for interesting connections.
  4. Hi Kate, I see your book is now available in paperback on Amazon for a very reasonable price. I just ordered a copy! Thanks for making it available in paperback. The cover looks great. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0CLDKDPY8/ref=pe_386300_440135490_TE_simp_item_image
  5. I am not sure where the right place to put this is, but Bacon is given credit as the founder of the "scientific method." So people think of it like modern science where you test a hypothesis in the experimental method and try to reproduce results. But I see his interest as being even more basic: how do we know things? He knew that scholasticism with its reliance on Aristotle and authorities was holding back the increase of knowledge (which he called "science"). We can't limit Bacon to just the "scientific method" as that term is understood today. He knew that increasing knowledge comes from following hunches and clues, from not being afraid to make a guess and be wrong, or to be made to look foolish in the eyes of others, although he did try to protect his new ideas, with his "exoteric" and "esoteric" divisions. Not all knowledge was for all people at all times. That is one thing that this internet format does not really accommodate. New discoveries come from exploration, insight, following trails which may lead to nowhere, trying and trying again, the passage of time while ideas simmer, and then one day it comes to a person, maybe in a dream, maybe seemingly by accident, but by being aware, by not missing opportunities because one has done the groundwork. Participating in learning like this has to be one of the most exciting things in life. If we follow the hints in the works (of Bacon, "Shakespeare"), they take us deeper and deeper. You can never really go deep enough. There is always another layer to explore. And there are ways of knowing things that are mysteries, that can never be proven, maybe. It is easy to read too much of what we want to find in Bacon, as Daniel R. Coquillette warned in his book on Bacon's jurisprudence, Francis Bacon (Stanford Univ. Press, 1992), p. 2. We have to be careful of that. Bacon did stay close to the Latin, literal meanings of words he used that came from Latin, Spedding observed. The word "scientia" in Latin meant "a knowing, knowledge of, acquaintance with, skill in." His use of the term was broader than the term "science" usually means in use today.
  6. Baconian Edwin Reed's Verulam Society published editions of Shakespeare's The Tempest and Julius Caesar which can be read for free online at HathiTrust (Boston: Coburn Press, 1909). Julius Caesar, https://babel.hathitrust.org/cgi/pt?id=mdp.39015082531529&seq=21 The Tempest, https://babel.hathitrust.org/cgi/pt?id=mdp.39015082233423&seq=9 They are full of notes and references. He died in 1908. Too bad we only have the two plays in Verulam editions (judging from WorldCat.org). HathiTrust has Francis Bacon and the Muse of Tragedy as well. Catalog record: https://catalog.hathitrust.org/Record/001365236?type[]=all&lookfor[]=Francis Bacon and the Muse of Tragedy&ft= On SirBacon, there is Reed's essay, "Bacon and Shakespeare on Love." https://sirbacon.org/bacon-and-shakespeare-on-love-by-edwin-reed/ and this excerpt with a link to his book, Francis Bacon: Our Shakespeare (1902). His online books page: https://onlinebooks.library.upenn.edu/webbin/book/lookupname?key=Reed%2C Edwin%2C 1835-1908 I am a big fan of Edwin Reed's writing on Bacon-Shakespeare. Thanks for bringing his book up, Arpy Dubya.
  7. The very wise Francis Bacon observed that people tend to prefer an appealing lie to the truth.
  8. When we frame the argument, we must be careful that the assumptions upon which we would build are valid. If we label Bacon as "philosopher" and "statesman," as C. J. has done, we leave out Bacon's other roles: his acknowledged literary genius, without even considering whether or not he wrote the works attributed to "William Shakespeare" (practically the only kind of writing "Bacon" didn't try his hand at was the writing of plays, wrote James Shapiro in "Contested Will"); his contributions as a historian; his writing of masques and "devices"; his humanitarian aims of restoring a golden age of mankind through the advancement of learning. When you paint a picture, it is all the little dabs of paint taken together that make up the picture. Bacon was a fascinating person. He is not dead to us; his ideas live on through his writing. Yes, he got some things wrong, because learning did increase since his time, based upon a foundation of facts (hypotheses subject to perpetual challenge). The advancement of learning depends upon making adjustments in the course of knowledge as we go along, like a person steering a ship. But to say we can never know when a thing is true or false is dangerous, if that is what you are saying, C. J. Bacon did not want people to be gullible, vulnerable to the mercies of charlatans who would exploit their trust. He tried to give them the tools for separating true facts from fallacies. He presented antipathies, pairs of opposites--just as "Shakespeare" did--because that was where the sharpest contrasts could be seen. Yes, it is an aesthetic principle as well. In a free society, people need to be educated to self-govern most effectively. Queen Elizabeth translated classical authors in order to keep her mind sharp for statecraft. Education matters, not just show you can get a better job and have a higher standard of living, but so you can be your best self, so you can know yourself, so you can be a responsible citizen. What I was trying to say in my essay is that those with the loudest voice are not always the ones to follow. We need to think for ourselves. The truth is usually not simple. It is gray, not black and white. But it does matter. It has an independent existence, and it is worth pursuing. When we know a thing is true, or false, we have an obligation to say so, if we reasonably can. The world would be a better place if people would do that, would it not. With the Shakespeare authorship controversy, we have a lot of educated people pretending a lie does not matter. And what have been the consequences? We do not have that foundation of historical truth upon which to build. That does not seem to me to be a good way to operate. Do we even know what all the consequences of that have been? What will be the consequences if the Oxfordians convince everyone that, since it obviously wasn't Shaxpere, and it "couldn't" have been Bacon (without really examining whether or not that is a true statement), why, it must be Oxford! Even though he did not have the legal background to have written the law in the Shakespeare plays and sonnets. Even though he was not the compassionate humanitarian servant of God and his fellow man that Bacon was; rather, Oxford served Oxford. I used to think the Oxfordians were operating in good faith, but if they were, they would not be continually ignoring good Baconian evidence as they press forward their own candidate. This is not to say that all Oxfordians care more about their agenda than about the truth. Labeling is useful, but dangerous. Words fail us, a topic which Bacon explored. What I am saying is that it is the method by which we go about determining what is true and false that must be protected. It is the method that matters. There are scientific standards; journalistic standards, legal standards for maintaining objectivity and defeating those "four idols" Bacon identified. We have Bacon to thank for the scientific method. It can't just be about selling books or winning the propaganda war. As Bacon said, "If we begin with certainties, we will end with doubts. If we begin with doubts, we will end with certainties." It is also about giving credit where credit is due. If a person borrows ideas from someone else, he ought to give the other person credit. A person who knowingly fails to acknowledge sources lays himself open to a charge of dishonesty. We have the freedom now to explore Shakespeare authorship. I hope we will always have that freedom. But I don't think the truth needs to tiptoe about so as not to offend anybody.
  9. Bacon stood for integrity. Coke wrote legal reports that falsely reported cases as he would have had them decided, rather than reporting what the court actually decided. Due to Bacon's influence, King James forced Coke to rewrite his false reports (see my book, Francis Bacon's Hidden Hand in Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice ("FBHH") (New York: Algora Publishing, 2018), p. 20, and sources cited (Daniel R. Coquillette, Francis Bacon (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1992), 246; William Holdsworth, A History of English Law, 3d ed. (1922), 553-554; Catherine Drinker Bowen, The Lion and the Throne (Boston: Little Brown, 1957), 515, 635. Bacon was an innovative legislative reformer. He was a first in appointing an official court reporter rather than rather than having one of the advocates in the case do it (beginning in 1617). (J. H. Baker, Intro. to English Legal History, 3d ed., 127; for other reforms of Bacon's, see 249 (attempts at codification), 356 (equity of redemption). He introduced the practical "Confession of judgment" which Coke would not allow; it was "too novel" (FBHH, 48, also 49 on Bacon's reforms). Bacon was concerned about the abuses of informers (FBHH, 20), about the dangers of dueling. On and on. Coke's father died when he was young, and he had to work hard from a young age as an actively-practicing lawyer to support his mother and siblings (FBHH, 44, and sources cited). In contrast, Bacon was somehow provided for, (despite illness, debt and lean years relying on family) even though he did not take his first legal case until 1594, Chudleigh's Case, although he was admitted to the bar in 1582. That was why Elizabeth gave the Attorney General position to Coke. Bacon was untried as a lawyer. At that time, Bacon had other interests that were more compelling to him. As he wrote to Burghley in 1592, "I confess that I have as vast contemplative ends as I have moderate civil ends, for I have taken all knowledge to be my province." You might also say that equity and the civil law were much more important to Bacon than to Coke, the common law practitioner. See Daniel R. Coquillette, Francis Bacon, generally (and appendix 1 as to dates) (FBHH, 49-51 and sources cited therein on Bacon's civilian influence). Coke the Puritan [correction: Coke had Puritan leanings and Puritan friends, but I am not aware of proof that he was actually himself a Puritan.] would never have gone to a play; whereas, Bacon, as we know, loved the theatre as a youth, to the point where his mother wrote in a letter that she trusted he "would not mum." As prosecutor, Coke interrogated (and oversaw the torture of) and prosecuted Jesuit priests and others who ran afoul of the law; I believe Bacon was on the side of mercy when possible. I believe he helped John Gerard escape from the Tower. He went back to see him privately after Coke and the others had left, after which Gerard made his escape (see my book Francis Bacon's Hidden Hand ("FBHH"), 137, and sources cited). I think Coke strongly suspected Bacon had done this, which would have been another reason for his antipathy towards Bacon. I do not think Bacon had the same level of animosity towards Coke. He just got tired of the way Coke treated him, with humiliating personal insults regarding the secret of his birth (https://sirbacon.org/cokeandbacon.htm). But the two of them did work well together on the Post-Nati case (Calvin's Case), according to Polly Price's article on the topic, "Natural Birthright and Citizenship in Calvin's Case"(1608), Yale Journal of Law and the Humanities 9, no 1, p. 76n12 (cited in FBHH, 44). I wrote in my book, "Bacon seems to have accepted foreign law more readily than Coke did. Bacon said "That our laws are as mixed as our language, and as our language is so much the richer on that account, so are the laws more complete." (Francis Bacon's Hidden Hand, 207n2, citing Conway Robinson, preface, History of the High Court of Chancery and other Institutions of England (Richmond, 1882), iv (I do not have the Spedding reference handy). For Bacon, equity was supplied to every law (FBHH, 190; Spedding 7:602). I hope you all will read my book, On Coke, The Lion and the Throne by Catherine Drinker Bowen (Boston: Little Brown, 1957), is also very good.
  10. The Early English Books Online - Corpora might reveal additional titles. It's a little slow to use if you don't have an institutional affiliation, but it can be done, with patience. https://www.english-corpora.org/eebo/. It covers printed books and broadsides. You will see that some of the sources you have already mentioned show up in it. I think someone spelling the name "Tidir" (how the Welsh would pronounce it) was saying they identified as Welsh, and/or with Owen Tudor himself (who, I would say, was unfairly executed), using the spelling the British gave to the man's name. This source says he chose to Anglicize his name, taking his grandfather's first name of Tudur as his last name rather than taking his father's first name of Maredudd as his last name which was the traditional Welsh way, but I read some time ago that it was the English who Anglicized (shortened, from "Owain ap Maredudd ap Tudur" to Owen Tudur or Tudor") his name when he came to their court in his youth. That seems perfectly likely and makes more sense to me. Like when people's names got changed when they came through immigration at Ellis Island. https://gw.geneanet.org/comrade28?lang=en&n=tudor&oc=0&p=owen
  11. According to Brian Vickers, John Ford acknowledged that this play of his was based on Bacon's account of Perkin Warbeck in his History of the Reign of King Henry VII. (Vickers ed., xliv). Vickers is author of The Collected Works of John Ford (4 vols) (Oxford University Press). It's in either vol 2 or 3 I think; I've seen the tables of contents for vols 1 and 4.
  12. I just wanted to say, the two references to Henry "Tudor," are spoken by Perkin Warbeck, the fraudulent claimant to Henry's throne, in his speech introducing himself to the Scottish King James IV (in 1495) who had welcomed him on 27 Nov 1495 through July 1497 (Brian Vickers, ed., The History of the Reign of King Henry VIII (Cambridge Univ. Press, 1998), 124 fn 4). According to Vickers, Bacon's source for Warbeck's speech was Speed (Vickers, 125). It might be worth checking if Speed used the words "Tidder" or "Tudor." Vickers says, "That Bacon should provide a major speech for Perkin, 'an imaginative effort ordinarily reserved ... for figures of such stature as Cardinal Morton, King Henry, or a French ambassador, shows the extend to which he makes Perkin a 'focal character' (citing Judith H. Anderson, Biographical Truth. The Representation of Historical Persons in Tudor-Stuart Writing (New Haven and London, 1984), p. 181). But In the Vickers 1998 edition, Perkin Warbeck's declaration is pp. 125 - 128 (148 - 153 in the 1622 edition; 136 - 140 in the 1902 Lumby ed.).
  13. Just a preliminary observation, without analyzing the whole poem, as should be done: these lines "This caus'd my Muse her wishes to powre forth, Some abler wit would shewe his Muses worth." suggest to me that Bacon himself might have authored that 1612 poem. In his dedication of his "Arguments of the Law ... in Certain Great and Difficult Cases" to the Society of Gray's Inn, he wrote, "It is true, I could have wished some abler person had begun; but it is a kind of order sometimes to begin with the meanest." [There's his ambiguous use of the ambiguous word "meanest."] Nevertheless, thus much I may say with modesty ...." (Spedding 7:523-24). Spedding thinks the Dedication was likely written "before Mich. Term, 1613." Bacon's "Arguments of the Law' were first printed in 1730 (Spedding, preface to "Arguments of the Law," 7:519). Second, "Richmond," I think, refers in this poem to Henry VII himself (as he is called in Shakespeare's play Richard III), rather than to his father Edmund Tudor (son of (French) Catherine, widow of Henry V, and the Welshman of noble family, "Owen Tudor" who was given the last name "Tudor" by the British, but in Welsh his last name would have been "Maredudd" or "Meredith"). Henry VII's father Edmund was also an Earl of Richmond, but he was never a king. Henry VII's claim to the throne was tenuous, but his offspring's (Henry VIII) claim was better, through Henry VII's marriage to Elizabeth of York (Plantagenet). Some links: https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Tudor-18 Note comments here: https://thehistoryofengland.co.uk/resource/family-tree-the-house-of-tudor/. It seems most likely that the person(s) who wrote the name "Tudor" in those poems were person(s) who cared the most that the name "Tudor" not be forgotten. Who would care the most? Well, Bacon. I'm citing internet sources, so please take them with a grain of salt. This article calls Edmund the first Earl of Richmond, https://www.tudorsociety.com/edmund-tudor-1st-earl-of-richmond/, but Wikipedia reports the title went back to the time of William the Conqueror (who was himself illegitimate), to Breton warrior Alan Rufus who was related to William the Conqueror. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Earl_of_Richmond. It can be very hard to find anything on an internet search for the "Robart Tidir" inscription, anywhere other than SirBacon. https://sirbacon.org/gallery/tower.html These search terms brought it right up: "sirbacon.org "Tidir" Earl of Essex." Just to note also that Henry VII was born at Pembroke Castle and the First Folio was dedicated to the 3rd Earl of Pembroke, William Herbert, and his brother Philip Herbert who later became the 4th Earl of Pembroke? Bacon had studied the life of Henry VII, writing his biography, The History of the Reign of Henry the Seventh (1625).
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