Drystone, an Analytical Approach — desolation row

All these people that you mention
Yes, I know them, they’re quite lame
I had to rearrange their faces
And give them all another name
Desolation Row, Bob Dylan

You are whom you do not want to be; that is your tragedy.
I am whom I want to be; that is my tragedy.
Rawhide: Incident of the Prairie Elephant, Dir. Robert L. Friend

That was the bacon that wrote Shakespeare's plays.
M*A*S*H  Season 9  (Pierce on that morning's breakfast.)

A peculiar thing about the Puddin’ was that, though they had all had a great many slices off him, there was no sign of the places whence the slices had been cut.

"That’s where the Magic comes," explained Bill.  "The more you eats the more you gets.  Cut-an’-come-again is his name, an’
cut and come again, is his nature.  Me an’ Sam has been eatin’ away at this Puddin’ for years, and there’s not a mark on him." The Magic Pudding, Norman Lindsay

Magic Pudding:

The Shakespeare authorship question is a magic pudding of a conundrum, for regardless of how many serves of speculation are sliced off it, it remains in spherical completeness to feed the next contender.  It seems in some fashion, inaccessible to logic, that each successively discarded contender makes Shakespeare himself less valid and the fresh contender more eligible.

The list below, inevitably incomplete, shows the introduction date of candidates.  Some of these candidates (in particular Francis Bacon and Edward de Vere) have had support over time (both Bacon and de Vere are still current).  Other candidates, such as Michele Angolo Florio, strutted their hour upon the stage and were heard no more.

Date Candidate Sponsor Announcement Reference
1728 not Shakespeare "Captain" Goulding (book) An Essay against Too Much Reading WEF
1769 Bacon (implied) possibly Herbert Lawrence (book) The Life and Adventures of Common Sense WEF
1785 Francis Bacon James Wilmot (unpublished) WEF, JS
1848 Ben Jonson Joseph C. Hart (book) The Romance of Yachting WEF
1888 Anthony Sherley F. Scott WEF
(1891) William Stanley James Greenstreet (articles in) The Genealogist WEF
1912 Roger Manners CÚlestin Demblon (book) Lord Rutland est Shakespeare WEF
(1913) Queen Elizabeth (W. R. Titterton)
1914 Walter Raleigh Henry Pemberton (book) Shakespeare and Sir Walter Raleigh WEF
1916 Robert Cecil John M Maxwell (book) The Man behind the Mask WEF
1920 Edward de Vere J. T. Looney (book) "Shakespeare" Identified WEF, JS
1927 Michele Angolo Florio Santi Paladino (reported in) Literary Digest WEF
1943 Edward Dyer Alden Brooks (book) Will Shakespere and the Dyer’s hand WEF
1955 Christopher Marlowe Calvin Hoffman (book) The Murder of the Man Who Was "Shakespeare" WEF, JS
2005 Henry Neville B. James, W. D. Rubinstein (book) The Truth Will Out: Unmasking the Real ... REI
2006 Mary Sidney Herbert Robin P. Williams (book) Sweet Swan of Avon: Did a Woman Write ... REI
n/a Daniel Defoe George Battey n/a WEF, JM
n/a Robert Burton M. L. Hore (pamphlet) Who Wrote Shakespeare? WEF

WEF: Friedman, W. F. and E. S. The Shakespearean Ciphers Examined, Cambridge, 1957
JS: Shapiro, James, Contested Will: Who Wrote Shakespeare?, Simon & Schuster, 2010
JM: Michell, John, Eccentric Lives and Peculiar Notions, Adventures Unlimited, 1999
REI: readily established on internet

Navigate by Site Map Overall site view with pages selectable by mouse click.
Index to Henry Neville pages Brenda James in her book, Henry Neville and the Shakespeare Code, argues that the works attributed to William Shakespeare are in fact the works of Henry Neville.
Index to Edward de Vere pages Jonathan Bond in his book, The De Vere Code, argues that the collection of sonnets attributed to William Shakespeare are in fact the works of Edward de Vere, the 17th Earl of Oxford.
Last update November 17, 2019     Mal Haysom    initial posting 12/12/2010