Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 5, No. 0012. Thursday, 6 January 1994.
Date: Wednesday, 5 Jan 1994 9:41:16 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Shakespeare's Illness
It is interesting and disturbing to learn of Shakespeare's possible Parkinson's
disease. I suppose this is one of the many things about the playwright that we
will never know with certainty.
Eugene O'Neill did suffer from Parkinson's disease, and he was physically
unable to write during the last ten years of his life. His last play, *A Moon
for the Misbegotten*, was completed in 1943, and he died in 1953. His letters
wrench the heart (at least, they wrenched my heart) in their description of
the mental and spiritual agony his condition caused him. Might Shakespeare
have known something of the same agony?