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Home :: Archive :: 2005 :: September ::
Syphilis
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 16.1628  Monday, 26 September 2005

[1] 	From: 	Stefan Andreas Sture <
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	Date: 	Sunday, 25 Sep 2005 19:49:35 +0200
	Subj: 	Re: SHK 16.1607 Syphilis

[2] 	From: 	David Basch <
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	Date: 	Sunday, 25 Sep 2005 17:35:09 -0400
	Subj: 	Re: SHK 16.1607 Syphilis


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From: 		Stefan Andreas Sture <
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Date: 		Sunday, 25 Sep 2005 19:49:35 +0200
Subject: 16.1607 Syphilis
Comment: 	Re: SHK 16.1607 Syphilis

 >[Editor's Note: I have a strong aversion to the thought of the list's
 >beginning a prolonged discussion of whether there are or are not codes
 >in Shakespeare's writing. Clearly, anyone believing in the existence of
 >such codes believes as a matter of faith and such beliefs are not
 >subject to being changed by logic or other means of persuasion. Such a
 >thread would, therefore, be, at least from my perspective, an enormous
 >waste of time and energy, both of which I have little of right now. Let
 >us leave this kind of discussion to conspiracy theorists and the
 >proponents of the Man from Essex, who as those in the know know read,
 >spoke, and wrote many ancient tongues including Aramaic, Sanscrit,
 >Hindi, Hebrew, Attic-Ionic, and Codic to name a few.]

If it can't, and it should not, go on at Shakesper you could post stuff 
like this at
http://www.quicktopic.com/31/H/4tmfaY2kjZd

Hardy's note is too funny. I would not even consider trying to learn codic.

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From: 		David Basch <
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Date: 		Sunday, 25 Sep 2005 17:35:09 -0400
Subject: 16.1607 Syphilis
Comment: 	Re: SHK 16.1607 Syphilis

Concerning the fact of hidden codes in Shakespeare's work, I must 
strongly disagree with comments on list that allege that "anyone 
believing in the existence of codes believes as a matter of faith and 
such beliefs are not subject to being changed by logic or other means of 
persuasion." The latter statement better describes those who reject the 
fact of this presence of "codes" even in the face of glaring evidence 
for it.

As I have already pointed out, J.M. Rollett, a retired physics professor 
from Ipswich England, not at all a "conspiracy theorist," found Henry 
Wriothesley's full name in the Dedication of the Sonnets embedded in 
Equal Letter Skip (ELS) codes. (The ELS code is a cryptographic device 
in which messages are presented in a text through equal letter spacing.) 
Cannot readers believe the evidence of their own eyes concerning this 
presence since I showed a text matrix demonstrating this on list? No 
faith is needed to see this, nor is there anything to discuss about the 
fact of this presence.

Professor Rollett calculated the chance of this appearing as having an 
astronomically low probability in the multi billionth range, something 
pretty extraordinary. However, simple observation tells the same story 
to those who can't do the math. Such an intricate name cannot possibly 
have appeared by chance in a short, 144 letter text, especially the name 
of a contemporary that some commentators have posed as the "friend," 
W.H., addressed in the Sonnets. Of course, what the presence of the name 
means is open to interpretation. (I reject many of Professor Rollett's 
interpretations.) However, this presence is a matter of indisputable 
fact.  Like it or not, this is a cryptograph (or code) and is not 
fantasy. On the other hand, imagining it away is indeed a case of 
fantasy and not a demonstration of disinterested scholarship.

The presence of Wriothesley's name proves that the ELS device was known 
and used at the time. It must lead to the question of what else in the 
Sonnets was communicated through such devices? I showed that the name, 
W-I-L-L, appears twice in ELS cryptographs in Sonnet 148 at skips of 142 
and -146.  It was not found even once in a dozen or more other sonnets 
searched at random.

Another cryptographic device I showed was Shakespeare's full name in 
vertical/diagonal alignments abreast of each other in Sonnet 148 (W-L-L 
/ S-H-A-K / S-P-EERE), something that ties into the presence of the ELS 
devices of the poet's first name in this sonnet. This alignment device 
is a steganographic code, a cryptogram that is not seen because it is 
unsuspected and goes unnoticed. But when it is pointed out, as in this 
case, its presence is so blatant that again it is sheer fantasy to 
imagine that it is not there, as some readers do.

The presence of the poet's name is not particularly earth shattering, 
but the mode in which it appears as a hidden communication is historic. 
It must give credibility to other such sightings in this mode, some of 
which I have shown on the list. It thus opens the door to more such 
finds that may have important significance. The presence of the device 
tells immediately that The Sonnets are more complex than has been 
imagined, though it must be granted that the significance of what is 
revealed in this manner is open to interpretation.

As for the existence in The Sonnets of a true "cipher code" in 
accordance with the definition of the Friedmans, I have alleged such a 
presence and was roundly dismissed for daring to make such an assertion, 
which I did in connection with challenging the allegation that Sonnets 
153 and 154 indicated that the poet had syphilis. Yet, no one on list 
called my bluff and asked that I demonstrate what I allege, though this 
information is available to anyone interested through my book, The 
Shakespeare Codes.  (There are currently scholars at numerous research 
universities that have copies of my book who are engaged in checking 
this out.)

I found this cipher code about seven years ago. Apparently it eluded 
that great expert, Bill Arnold. But Bill ought not to feel bad since for 
400 years everyone else missed it, including the Friedmans. That 
happened because this cipher code makes use of a foreign language, 
Hebrew. As such, we not only have a cipher code but one that is further 
encoded in another language and further shielded by being unsuspected. 
In other words, it is a triple cryptographic code: 1) a cipher code, 2) 
a cipher that is in the code of a foreign language, and 3) a 
steganographic code, hidden by being unsuspected. A report of even half 
such discoveries by any commentator would have enticed me to find out 
more about it. Am I the only person with this kind of curiosity? Or is 
it that the presence of the code is not the problem but the fear of what 
may be revealed through it?

My distinction is in having found these code devices. While this has led 
me to conclusions concerning the poet and the meaning of his work, I 
leave open the possibility that professional caliber scholars with the 
benefit of this material will come to their own conclusions, perhaps 
some counter to my own. The result eventually will be a more complete 
picture of the poet and his work. But this advance will have to be made 
without the benefit of those who persist in keeping heads in the sand 
and choosing to ignore concrete evidence of "codes" in the poet's work 
on the pretext that this is an alleged form of irrationality.

David Basch

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