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Home :: Archive :: 2001 :: May ::
Re: Time in Hamlet
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 12.1042  Monday, 7 May 2001

From:           Judith M. Craig <
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Date:           Friday, 4 May 2001 12:52:54 -0400
Subject: 12.1029 Re: Time in Hamlet
Comment:        Re: SHK 12.1029 Re: Time in Hamlet

Steve Roth writes:

<One could argue from his reading (and eloquence) <that Hamlet is a
<lifelong scholar like Tyndale, but it feels like quite a <stretch to
me.
<Southampton, Essex, Rutland, Oxford, and James <seem more likely
models.

I can't help but post my objection to this conclusion:  I find that idea
interesting that Tyndale might be a model for Hamlet.  Southampton, as a
model for scholarship in Shakespeare's mind might be refuted by Sonnet
35 which castigates the young man (often attributed to be Southampton)
as possessing a "sensual fault" (line 9) and in Sonnet 53 for lacking a
"constant heart" (line 14).  In Sonnet 82, he grants that "thou wert not
married to my Muse" (line 82) and even gives away his "gift, thy tables"
in Sonnet 122.

I would say that the Biblical allusions in practically all of the plays
are a subtext that makes the age of Hamlet equivalent with Tyndale in
school most interesting.  I would also argue that the tone of the
sonnets certainly does not argue that Southampton was a great or learned
scholar or even valued books a great deal (assuming that Southampton is
the "young man" of the sonnets).

Judy Craig

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