Sunday, September 28, 2003

Richard the Gumbonian

Elizabeth Weir can be pretty funny like when whe writes about DeVere in the gulag "at Hackney where he was sent after he fled the Armada in his size 3 shoes." Richard Kennedy, defender of DeVere, took offense, although Richard has poked fun at William of Stratford many times. Weir wasn't ridiculing his hero, Charlton Ogburn, who appears to be normal-sized man, of considerable heart and intelligence. But Oxford falls way short in the authorship sweepstakes. Bacon has the Strachey letter (so far), and Marlowe has *Lucrece* (so far). What's Edward got? A tall order, can Richard put it in rime royal? ;-)

Weir back

My dear friend Elizabeth Weir is back. Will she stay long enough to acknowledge the superiority (or plausibility) of the Marlovian case?

Here's Elizabeth:

> A genius wrote the Shakespeare works.
> Marlowe (Oxford) was a genius.
> Therefore Marlowe (Oxford) wrote the Shakespeare works.
> Part II--the hard part--of the Marlovian-Oxfordian argument
> is proving that Marlowe and Oxford were genius enough
> to write the works assigned to them.
> None of Marlowe's works received his name in his lifetime--
> a very curious thing since he was not under the aristocratic
> stima of print--which is an historical fact--so by claiming Marlowe's
> authorship of what looks like Shakespeare's apprenticeship as
> a playwright, Marlovians are, in the authorship dispute at least,
> then required to prove that Marlowe was genius enough to write
> the Marlowe works.

I couldn't resist the challenge so I wrote:

1. As a boy, Marlowe was given a scholarship to Kings School for "boys who could read Latin, write verse and sing plainsong."

2. He was given an Archbishop Parker scholarship to Cambridge.

3. Contemporaries: Peele, Drayton, Blount and Thorpe testify to Marley's genius.

4. His 1992 Latin dedicatory epistle to the Countess of Pembroke (signed C.M.) of Thomas Watson's book, promises committed to high culture, hence no name on Tamburlaine.

5. Dido was printed in 1594, by Nashe and Marlo.

6. Lucan's First Book and Hero and Leander registered in Sept. 1593. Both were published a few years later.

etc. etc. etc.

> Marlovians have nothing in terms of evidence other than
> Marlowe's spotty MA which Cambridge did not want to
> confer.

I trust the above evidence clears that up! If not, why not? Where shall I mail your Marlowe Lives! Association membership card?

> Oxfordians, who think biography is evidence, can
> claim without much dissent that Oxford wrote the poetry
> assigned to him which runs from doggeral to "documented
> to have been written by Harvey," but Oxford's own
> mediocre poetry--if his stable of ten poets didn't write
> the best of it--coupled with the fact that the self-promoting
> Oxford was anything but a concealed poet eliminates
> Oxford from authorship contention.
> your admirer of irrevocable renegades
> Elizabeth

With all due respect, the Oxfrodian case is a joke. The evidence is scantier than a thong on sumo wrestler.

I tell you, Elizabeth, the Bacovians rule!
You can have King Henry VIII, I Henry VI, and the first 17 sonnets.

Have you looked into Lucan? Surely the author of that could have written *Lucrece*, case closed.

Another member of the rime royal club

Greg Reynolds weighs in with this:

Mystery solv'd, as far as that's concerned,
Dave reminding us which college taught Kit:
Cambridge is where his poetry was learned...
Will had no schooling, come to think of it,
Proving then Lucrece is something Will writ!
Authorship questions are thereby neutered:
(The poet said his lines were "untutored.")

Nice job, Greg!
A for rime scheme
A for argument
C for meter (everyone but the last is 'headless', last three lines not iambic -- just passing on what i was taught by my betters)

Although the poet claimed untutored lines
The story came from older language sources:
William wouldn't recognize the signs,
Since Chaucer wasn't one his resources,
He was too busy tending theater horses.
The poet plainly lied unless he meant
UnTudored, and republic government.

Lucrece sources:

Neil Obstat

When Neil Brennen finally saw that I snagged (he says "stole") his photo from his website and posted it in this blog, he didn't like it one bit, so he's taken the image down...(If it were my picture I'd do the same thing). At least he's posting more informative messages like his latest on the King John POTM thread about Guy of Warwick.

Saturday, September 27, 2003

It appears that the RM sonnet was a pastiche of Jim's, no?
If Jim wrote every line himself, he is no mean versifier. Still, the challenge I offer is to write original *rime royal* about how William (or Edward or Francis) wrote V&A and/or Lucrece.

To me, the fact that no Stratfordian or Oxfrodian in this ng can produce such verses tells me one of two things a) Strats aren't very versatile poets (pace Grumman) or, b) Strats don't know much about Shakespeare's narrative poetry (the works that "made his name," so to speak). (Ditto for the Deverites)

Note to Crowley: Why would Devere (as a pre-adolescent) write about an event that lead to the establishing of a REPUBLIC when Q. Elizabeth was a fairly new monarch?

Note to Brennen: this isn't about me, it's about writing poetry about Shakespeare. If you don't like mine, write better.

Note to Farey: since you're so proficient in rime royal, why don't you write your next Hoffman essay in that form. If you do I can almost *guarantee* that you will win. If you do, and you do, you can thank me later.

Note to Elizabeth: You're right: it's down to Marley and Bacon. I'm ready whenever you poetry or prose.

Note to Lorenzo: keep it up.

Note to Shakespeareans (of all persuasions)--

rime royalling is not to be despised
by anyone who loves the old bard's verse;
by foiling each other we'll get wise
despite a metric lapse, off-rime, or worse,
if all the evidence is set down first.
so here's a fact that can be tersely told:
a greyhound sign showed where *Lucrece* was sold.

Wednesday, September 24, 2003

Posted replies to Grumman, Brennen and Lorenzo. Suitable to each, I hope.
I think it's fine if no one cares to write rime royal verses in the Rime Royal thread. It takes time to do. That's why I say it was impossible for rural William to write in such a learned and lettered fashion right off the bat, so to speak, with Venus & Adonis and Rape of Lucrece, both of which show knowledge of advanced rhetorical techniques and understanding of classical legends. Neither show A TRACE of Warwickshire dialect which William spoke.

However, this be said, and it be true
Kit Marley wrote those poems without ado
Except to publish them to bid adieu.
> >We'll never know, I guess-- their tongues are tied,
> >But I, like Lord Randall, can say "I tried."
> But RANdall is the name. Yes? Thus you're fried.
> And I, like Fidel Castro, eyes a-far: (that means "a-fire," Dave)
> Say, "Close, Senor, and yet, Ai! No cigar."

In faith, Lorenzo, words half-baked like "l'ar" (that means "liar" Lo)
Suggest to me you didn't get too far (that means "fire" Lo)
About your hero, Ed Devere, the dunce.
I've asked you to not only twice, but once.

Tuesday, September 23, 2003

Text of The Rape of Lucrece

Rime toil

The silence of the Strats and Oxfrodians proves my point. Both camps are like groupies, who can't write poetry themselves, so they worship an illiterate bumpkin (or a highborn lowlife) who didn't have the education or technical skill to write a literary masterpiece like *Lucrece* in 1594 (or any other year, for that matter).

The attempt by Crowley and other ignoramuses to belittle Shakespeare's achievement, by calling it juvenile only reveals their own incompetence. Crowley can't even write ONE single stanza of rime royal, yet he says the author wrote it before puberty. Stratfordians have a different problem: their man was an "upstart crow" when Venus & Adonis was written. And apparently they can't write "Shakespearean-style" poetry.

Others have doubted my contention that the inability to write poetry diminishes one's authority for judging poetry competently. Of course, everyone is entitled to an opinion, but not all opinions are equally valid. Out of shape arm-chair quarterbacks can toss and catch a football. Most tennis fans can hit the ball over the net a few times. Even people in wheelchairs can shoot baskets, but Stratfordians can not write even a single stanza of "rime royal" to prove that their (unlettered) hero could have written it.

I'm certain that of those who have written "acceptable" rime royal in this thread (acceptable meaning ABOUT Shakespeare, not about me, written in true iambic pentameter, riming ababbcc)...none would minimize the author's great achievement in *Rape of Lucrece* -- 265 STANZAS of rime royal on an important topic (the elimination of tyrants and establishment of republic), dedicated to a young nobleman on the rise. Most definitely superior to oranges this time of year. And much better than shallow (if entertaining) concoctions like Titus Andronicus and Comedy of Errors. Lucrece was deep, in more ways than one.

Now here's one for the grave and wiser sort:
The man who wrote *Lucrece* had been to court.
He wrote the poem on purpose, not for sport,
To give a revolution his support;
For most who read Lucrece, well understood
Between the lines the message: change was good--
Especially from tyranny, and well it should
By Jove and folks be overthrown (it would).

Th' above is NOT rime royal verse I know,
but maybe soon it will so flow,
But now it's your turn, reader, yo,
stop arguing in so-so prose
and picking one another's nose
if you know who wrote those
Lucrece and Venus and Adonis, prove it:
William, Francis, Ned or Kit--
In verses lyrical and accurate.

Sunday, September 21, 2003

Rime royal blues

Lorenzo's spoofin' usually, like me,
But I'm a bit more serious, I guess:
I think rime-royal poetry is key,
Since Strats can't rime of William's mental stress
In penning *Venus and Adonis*, Yes?
I've challenged them to write some truthful verse
About their Will (not me, or Marley's curse).

Just think about it, folks, for a short spell:
Rime Royal (when it's right) can not be false!
That's why no Strat or Oxfrod [sic] dudes can tell
Their heroes' tales in verse: The task appalls,
Since neither camp has evidence or balls.
True poets will agree Kit wrote *Lucrece*
Unless Will's fans "step up" and state their piece.

I doubt it can be done, to tell the truth:
The facts cannot be forced to fit his case--
Like thinking an old man can cut a tooth.
In 1594, none scribbled plays:
The bard back then wrote narrative most days.
But William would've had to earn a living;
He had close kin to whom he would be giving.

And how'd he learn to write without a trace
Of Warwick dialect in that long poem?
And write rhetorically in every phrase?
At 12, he'd left his school to work at home
And six years on, hitched up, a kid to come.
Now how in all gods' names could it be done?
Though smoking, there're no bullets in Will's gun.

And Oxford is another instance of
A lack of Latin credibility,
Though his supporters think he is above
All others born of no nobility.
(Though Bacon is possibility.)
We'll never know, I guess-- their tongues are tied,
But I, like Lord Randall, can say "I tried."

"mark the mustard"

p.s. i hope Peter Farey and the other members of the Rime Royal club will forgive "false/appalls" "come/home" "trace/phase" and "case/plays".

Saturday, September 20, 2003

Hipp in High Country

Met John Hippisley in Denver last weekend. He was the guy dressed up as "Marlowe" to promote Marlowe's Restaurant in Canterbury, England ten years ago, during events to commemorate the 400th anniversary of Marlowe's "sudden end" in 1593. We travelled to Colorado Springs for a meeting of the Marlowe Lives! Association at Garden of the Gods. I'll post some photos later.

Thursday, September 04, 2003

Elizabeth Writes Re: Lucrece

I went through the footnotes to Lucrece in _Venus and Adonis, Lucrece
and the Minor Poems_ by Albert W. Feuillerat, Yale University Press,1927. Feuillerat's book--I think he also wrote the Yale Shakespeare--is an example
of the supremely high level of Shakespeare [ not to be confused with Stratfordian] scholarship that preceded the loss of (especially) Latin and Greek in academia.

Feuillerat has about a hundred notes for Lucrece, most of them taken up with correcting other scholars who misattribute lines to Ovid, not Livy, but there are
> definitely some lines that would defy attribution to a very young poet--I don't know how old Crowley thinks Oxford was when he wrote Lucrece--late adolescence?

Here's one of the notes on music that looks intellectually mature:

In line 1134. descant' st. 'To descant: to play or sing an air in harmony with a fixed theme' (N.E. better skill. I.e. with better skill. So Malone and others. But Wyndham explains more subtly: 'p, [sic] here, as ever, exhibits a complete grasp of technical terms. He makes Lucrece contrast her sad, monotonous accompaniment of groans-- humming on Tarquin still--with the treble descant of the nightingale, complaining in a higher register and with more frequent modulations of the wrong wrought her by Tereus, according to Ovid's tale. The one he compares to a single droning base, chiefly in the diapason or lower octave; the other to the "better skill" or more ingenious artifice of a contrapuntal melody scored above it.' Ibid. p 160.

There are numerous legal terms in Lucrece which are punned on by a poet with easy familiarity with law. Knowledge of law would put the author beyond the age of a young adolescent.
> Elizabeth

Good info, as usual, from Elizabeth...As she has said elsewhere, it's down to
Marley and Bacon...and you/we haven't yet discussed what their relationship might have been prior to 1593. Marley, like many other poets of the day, aspired to the favor of the Pembroke clan, (and appears to have gotten it, judging from the testimonial of "Heminge and Condell" in the Folio).

So what's Bacon's story, circa early 1590s? What do we (you) KNOW? and how might he have had a connection to Marley...because if Bacon DID write V&A and Lucrece, then how did he get hold of a manuscript of H&L. He didn't travel in the same circle(s) as Marley.

Wednesday, September 03, 2003

The LASI Award Verses

I wrote:

> >Rime Royal is the longest single thread ,
> >Because 100's more than 91,
> >Where poets posted verses from their head(s)
> >And played with words and had a bit of fun,
> >And learned a thing or two when it was done.
> >Perhaps it isn't over, more's to come
> >And Groves and Kennedy will submit some.

Lorenzo replied:

> You ought observe, that, hoarder of the corn,
> (I.e. the thread, "Corn Hoarder"), was the whence,
> Wherefrom our most intriguing thread was born,
> Due due, Eliza's due. Come, hie thee hence;
> Due dues? Unduly rendered ever since.
> Nor never once at all, that I recall.
> Oh well, goodnight Irene, goodnight y'all.
> Lorenzo
> "Mark the music."

I replied:

Art Neuendorffer made that point himself.
Eliza's due th'award, no thanks to you,
A shiny LASSIE high up on her shelf,
A dusty sign of research overdue.
But must she dully bid D. Webb adieu?
And you, high L'o, should write of Ned DeVere:
Irene'll drink the dew in her parched ear.

"mark the mustard"

Monday, September 01, 2003

Nihil obstat

Nihil Brennen (Spam Scone) prompted me to write:

Obviously anyone who doubts the ascription of this poem to William of Stratford, must believe that the name on the dedicatory epistle to Henry Wriothesley...WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE...was a pseudonym, an "invention," if you will. If Marlowe were going to continue writing, he would require a name that was not too obviously a pseudonym (like Penn Naigm), yet suggestive (like Neil Downing). Don't you agree? I say IF.

But back Nihil...the Marlovians have yet to have high-profile convert. I've been courting Grumman for years, but he's too comfortable with what he thinks he knows. You could be the first to pull a "Richie Miller" (Richie came to his senses and rejected the ridiculous Oxfraudian claim in favor of William. Well, maybe he hasn't come completely to his senses. It's like he got a card that says, go back to Strat. It would really be "something" if Nihil would convert. So here's a reading list:

1. In Search of Christopher Marlowe
2. Nicholl's The Reckoning
3. Hero and Leander
4. Venus and Adonis
5. reread Lucrece
6. Farey's essays

Not necessarily in that order, one group is about the bio, another literary.

To be fair, Nihil can recommend 5 books to me, Shakespeare-related. I promise to read the first one on the list (if I haven't already, in which case, I'll read the next, etc.), if you do the same with Wraight.