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Home :: Archive :: 2001 :: May ::
Re: Feathers
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 12.1047  Monday, 7 May 2001

[1]     From:   Clifford Stetner <
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        Date:   Saturday, 5 May 2001 22:38:48 -0400
        Subj:   Re: SHK 12.1030 Re: Feathers

[2]     From:   Marcus Dahl <
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        Date:   Sunday, 6 May 2001 10:37:23 EDT
        Subj:   Re: SHK 12.1030 Re: Feathers


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Clifford Stetner <
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Date:           Saturday, 5 May 2001 22:38:48 -0400
Subject: 12.1030 Re: Feathers
Comment:        Re: SHK 12.1030 Re: Feathers

Not to mention Sonnet 41:

Gentle thou art, and therefore to be won,
Beauteous thou art, therefore to be assailed.
(5-6)

> In 1HVI,V.i Suffolk says:
>                 "She's beautiful, and therefore to be woo'd
>                  She's a woman, therefore to be won."
>
> The same aphorism is used or alluded to in two other plays written at
> about the same time, it seems to have been a favorite of WS's at that
> time: RIII,I.ii; TitAnd,II.i.  This is certainly not conclusive, but
> does it not suggest that the Margaret-Suffolk scenes are Shakespearean?

Clifford

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Marcus Dahl <
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Date:           Sunday, 6 May 2001 10:37:23 EDT
Subject: 12.1030 Re: Feathers
Comment:        Re: SHK 12.1030 Re: Feathers

O K I have held my breath for two days (no mean achievement I assure all
our readers) and have surfaced afresh to once again (always the fool)
add my meagre thoughts to the great and vasty blackboard of
Shakespearean textual debate. Perhaps too I will attempt to answer some
of John Briggs' weighty questions.

On the matter of John's kind offer to debug my computer I am afraid to
disappoint him - for the computer I use (and the program) is the
property of Dr. Eckhard Bick of the VISL Project at Odense University
Denmark. Eckhard would I am sure be very pleased to accept John's expert
guidance.

(1) John's first question is of course a form of advice, so I can't
answer it. I would beg him though to suggest the ways in which I have so
abjectly mis-read the SR and perhaps ask him to allow the wisdom of his
thoughts on the subject to be disseminated to other SHAKSPEReans who may
in turn benefit from his insights into the work of Peter Blayney. It is
often the case that I am wrong so I would honestly ask for guidance.

(2) The Pavier question is of course complex. John will remember however
the line concerning 'the dukes revenue' which is missing from Contention
but not from Q3 or Folio. The line is subtly different in Q3 however as
it contains the additional word 'whole'. Some would say that the Folio
editors went to Pavier's edition for this line, others that Pavier
perhaps had access to a text other than Q1. The other standard example
relates to (poor shade that he is) Peter Alexander's argument as to the
memorial nature of Q1. His central argument is of course that no one but
a forgetful actor could have written the foolishly un-historical lineage
speech of the Duke of York contained in Q1.  The interesting connection
with Q3 is that The Whole Contention does not contain the same errror
(though it contains different errors). It should be noted that none of
the three texts offer a completely correct lineage speech.  It is
possible therefore that either Pavier (or some noble scribe etc)
corrected the glaring error in Q1 from Holinshed (as I think McKerrow
states) or that Pavier had access to another variant of the speech (not
unlike 2HVI).  Another example is contained in the extra line given to
the King in Q3 at the St. Albans episode. Q1 does not allocate the line
"Where wast thou borne?" to the King but to Humphrey whereas Q3 (echoing
Folio) does. These are small examples but it is the small examples which
(as Gary Taylor knows) build up to big arguments.

(3) Whether or not some critics "believe" Pembroke's Men to be an
offshoot of Strange's Men is not at issue. Some people believe that
Shakespeare wrote for the Queens Men and some, quoting the title page of
Titus, would suggest Sussex or Derby's troupes. More facts less belief
please.

(4) Yes Marcus really does believe that Contention and 2HVI contain
references to the wearing (at least symbolically) of Roses:

Then will I raise aloft the Milke-white-Rose,
With whose sweet smell the Ayre shall be perfum'd,
And in my Standard beare the Armes of Yorke,
To grapple with the house of Lancaster,
And force perforce Ile make him yeeld the Crowne,   [270]
Whose bookish Rule, hath pull'd faire England downe.

2HVI

Then vvill I raise aloft the milke-vvhite Rose,
With vvhole svveete smell the aire shall be perfumde,
And in my Standard beare the Armes of Yorke,
To graffle vvith the House of Lancaster:
And force perforce, ile make him yeeld the Crovvne,   [270]
Whose bookish rule hath puld faire England dovvne.
                                          Exet Yorke

CONTENTION

(5) Sorry but I don't understand this point John. More elaboration
needed.  Are you saying that because there are no Roses in 2HVI then
1HVI must be written afterwards? If so, see (4).

(6) 1HVI and Rich. III are such different plays in my mind that I do
struggle to see much of a connection between them at all (I've already
mentioned the Crookback stuff). There are however certain grammatical
relations (my count for the 'do' auxiliary puts Rich. III as an
extremely low (hence early) count (however I will redo this particular
count since its deviance does seems to point to an error on my part
rather than chronological difference). My research is concerned to
describe the kinds of connection linguistic or historical (etc) between
texts and it may be that the similarities between Rich. III and 1HVI are
more than I have previously thought. John, do you have any other reasons
to suppose a connection?

(7) John's (7) defies me I'm afraid. He seems to be saying that because
3HVI has connections with Rich. III, those speeches which connect it
must have been written later because 1HVI was written at the same time
as Rich. III - a premise which he has yet to establish by other
argument. If the premise requires the conclusion I would suspect a
certain argumentative circularity.

Nevertheless perhaps we can continue on with this thread and all learn
something.

Cheers,
Marcus.

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