2009

Anagrams

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 20.0547  Thursday, 29 October 2009

[1] From:   John Briggs <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
     Date:   Thursday, 29 Oct 2009 23:18:34 +0000
     Subj:   Re: SHK 20.0538 Anagrams

[2] From:   Arlynda Boyer <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
     Date:   Thursday, 29 Oct 2009 17:26:28 -0400
     Subj:   Re: SHK 20.0517 Wriothesley Anagrams in the Sonnets?

[3] From:   JD Markel <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
     Date:   Thursday, 29 Oct 2009 17:22:54 -0700 (PDT)
     Subj:   Re: SHK 20.0538 Anagrams


[1] -----------------------------------------------------------------
From:       John Briggs <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:       Thursday, 29 Oct 2009 23:18:34 +0000
Subject: 20.0538 Anagrams
Comment:    Re: SHK 20.0538 Anagrams

Steve Sohmer wrote:

 >This is Shakespeare's jibe at the great flaw in Pope Gregory's calendar.
 >Because, as you'll remember, in 1582 Gregory corrected the calendar by
 >removing ten days. Which returned the calendar NOT to the way it was
 >when Jesus was born ... but to the way it was when Bishop Eusebius and
 >the church fathers settled the date of the Vernal Equinox on 21 March.

Well, yes and no. What the Council of Nicaea did what fix a formula for 
determining the date of Easter -- the Vernal Equinox had moved to 21 
March independently of them and was to move backwards regardless of the 
their efforts. (They only assumed that the date of the Vernal Equinox 
was fixed.) It was Julius Caesar (remember him?) who had set the 
calendar on its course (although the Roman calendar only really came 
into line with the Julian calendar in 1 BC/1 AD), and whose efforts that 
Pope Gregory was correcting. There was a logic to returning the calendar 
to 325 AD: everyone accepted the Council of Nicaea, and there would be 
paradoxical effects to returning the calendar to 1 BC or 33 AD (the 
latter date -- or something similar -- being more relevant to the date 
of Easter.)

On the wider question of Steve Sohmer's solutions to various nonsense 
words, he may be correct as to their origin but wrong about their 
significance (if any.) If Shakespeare did indeed generate the words in 
this way (taking anagrams of Latin words derived from any text to hand), 
it may just mean that his imagination needed a mechanical technique to 
generate nonsense. This would be surprising, but not impossible: he was 
perhaps using anagrams as a "lorem ipsum" generator.

I have mentioned before my surprise at having invented a "Shakespeare 
Our Contemporary" who was a postmodernist (in postmodernism allusions 
which would have meaning in modernism have not meaning beyond 
themselves.) There may also be no significance to Shakespeare having 
taken characters' names in the play from the liturgical calendar for the 
period from Advent to Lent (an insight of Steve Sohmer's, I believe) or 
from John Florio's Italian dictionary (Keir Elam.)

Keir Elam's not wholly satisfactory Arden 3 edition of "Twelfth Night" 
is unusually sound on the question of anagrams in the play:

"Despite the unenviable fate of the steward, and despite the 
unflattering image of interpretation that the episode presents, the 
fustian riddle has proved an equally fatal attraction to the comedy's 
spectators and commentators, who, affected by a sort of mimetic 
syndrome, are tempted to 'become' Malvolio in the endeavour to 
unscramble the letters. Over the years interpretative speculation on the 
riddle has reached improbable heights of ingenuity."

John Briggs

[2]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:       Arlynda Boyer <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:       Thursday, 29 Oct 2009 17:26:28 -0400
Subject: 20.0517 Wriothesley Anagrams in the Sonnets?
Comment:    Re: SHK 20.0517 Wriothesley Anagrams in the Sonnets?

It seems to me that neither writer was attempting to sneak in coding as 
scholarship. On the contrary, they seemed to be asking, "if we are 
intellectually rigorous enough to reject the anti-stratfordians' silly 
word games, are we also intellectually rigorous enough to reject such 
games when the answers affirm traditional scholarship?" Happily, the 
answer turned out to be yes.

I think this incident only proves again the honesty and rigor of this 
listserv.

Best,
Arlynda Boyer

[3]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:       JD Markel <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:       Thursday, 29 Oct 2009 17:22:54 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: 20.0538 Anagrams
Comment:    Re: SHK 20.0538 Anagrams

Regarding Steve Sohmer's very interesting observations about the 
wordplay at TN 2.3.26-27. It strikes me Phoebus works here for 
"Queubus." Such would not be the first mangling of the name, see 
Bottom's "Phibbus" at MND 1.2.30.

_______________________________________________________________
S H A K S P E R: The Global Shakespeare Discussion List
Hardy M. Cook, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
The S H A K S P E R Web Site <http://www.shaksper.net>

DISCLAIMER: Although SHAKSPER is a moderated discussion list, the 
opinions expressed on it are the sole property of the poster, and the 
editor assumes no responsibility for them.

AYL: Rosalind and Orlando 4.1

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 20.0546  Thursday, 29 October 2009

From:       Arnie Perlstein <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:       Wednesday, 28 Oct 2009 17:43:33 -0400
Subject:    AYL: Rosalind and Orlando 4.1

"There appears to be some coherent design to Rosalind's lesson in Act 
IV, scene I. We notice a back-and-forth play between the shrewish, 
stand-offish woman and the playfully flirty woman, which may be meant to 
mark the progression of a courtship."

I went to see the Troilus & Cressida production at the Globe this summer 
just past, and it was in watching it that I realized the strong 
resonance between the oscillating Rosalind in AYL 4.1 and the 
oscillating Cressida in T&C 3.2, in particular the following lines 
spoken by Cressida, which was acted amazingly and schizophrenically well 
by the actress who played her, channeling Steve Martin from All of You 
(or maybe Steve Martin was channeling Cressida?). Surely this is not an 
accidental resonance, but Shakespeare meant those who know both plays to 
see it and think about what it means:

CRESSIDA

Hard to seem won: but I was won, my lord,
With the first glance that ever -- pardon me --
If I confess much, you will play the tyrant.
I love you now; but not, till now, so much
But I might master it: in faith, I lie;
My thoughts were like unbridled children, grown
Too headstrong for their mother. See, we fools!
Why have I blabb'd? who shall be true to us,
When we are so unsecret to ourselves?
But, though I loved you well, I woo'd you not;
And yet, good faith, I wish'd myself a man,
Or that we women had men's privilege
Of speaking first. Sweet, bid me hold my tongue,
For in this rapture I shall surely speak
The thing I shall repent. See, see, your silence,
Cunning in dumbness, from my weakness draws
My very soul of counsel! stop my mouth.

TROILUS

And shall, albeit sweet music issues thence.

PANDARUS

Pretty, i' faith.

CRESSIDA

My lord, I do beseech you, pardon me;
'Twas not my purpose, thus to beg a kiss:
I am ashamed. O heavens! what have I done?
For this time will I take my leave, my lord.

TROILUS

Your leave, sweet Cressid!

PANDARUS

Leave! an you take leave till to-morrow morning, --

CRESSIDA

Pray you, content you.

TROILUS

What offends you, lady?

CRESSIDA

Sir, mine own company.

TROILUS

You cannot shun Yourself.

CRESSIDA

Let me go and try:
I have a kind of self resides with you;
But an unkind self, that itself will leave,
To be another's fool. I would be gone:
Where is my wit? I know not what I speak.

Just in case we miss the strong resonance between AYL 4.1 and T&C 3.2, I 
just realized that Shakespeare made sure to underline the connection 
when Rosalind's virtually first words to Orlando are:

The poor world is almost six thousand years old, and in all this time 
there was not any man died in his own person,  videlicit, in a 
love-cause. Troilus had his brains  dashed out with a Grecian club; yet 
he did what he  could to die before, and he is one of the patterns  of 
love."

So we are being signaled here very explicitly that Rosalind is going to 
be channeling the love-schizo Cressida from there on in, and sure 
enough, Shakespeare delivers.

ARNIE

_______________________________________________________________
S H A K S P E R: The Global Shakespeare Discussion List
Hardy M. Cook, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
The S H A K S P E R Web Site <http://www.shaksper.net>

DISCLAIMER: Although SHAKSPER is a moderated discussion list, the 
opinions expressed on it are the sole property of the poster, and the 
editor assumes no responsibility for them.

Shakespeare for children?

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 20.0544  Thursday, 29 October 2009

From:       Christopher Baker <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:       Thursday, 29 Oct 2009 16:59:58 -0400
Subject:    Shakespeare for children?

I have a friend who would like to introduce her 8-year-old to 
Shakespeare and is seeking advice on filmed versions of the plays that 
might be appropriate. Any suggestions?

Thanks,
Chris Baker


_______________________________________________________________
S H A K S P E R: The Global Shakespeare Discussion List
Hardy M. Cook, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
The S H A K S P E R Web Site <http://www.shaksper.net>

DISCLAIMER: Although SHAKSPER is a moderated discussion list, the 
opinions expressed on it are the sole property of the poster, and the 
editor assumes no responsibility for them.

Gibert Shakespeare

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 20.0545  Thursday, 29 October 2009

From:       David Kathman <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:       Thursday, 29 Oct 2009 00:54:48 -0500
Subject: 20.0536 Gibert Shakespeare
Comment:    Re: SHK 20.0536 Gibert Shakespeare

William Sutton wrote:

 >I have recently been searching for the truth behind this idea that
 >Shakespeare's brother Gilbert was a haberdasher. My next step is to
 >try and verify from the early records of the Haberdasher's company.
 >
 >Now Halliwell-Phillips searched the Coram Rege rolls of 1597 and
 >found a reference to Gilbert standing bail for a clockmaker of
 >Stratford, describing him as a haberdasher in St Bride's parish,
 >London.
 >
 >Then I read CC Stopes Shakespeare's Family who claimed that
 >Halliwell Phillips had erred and read Gilbert Shepherd's name in
 >place of Gilbert Shakespeare Stopes searched the Haberdasher Company
 >records and registers in St Bridget's and St Bride's as well as the
 >subsidy rolls. Then I find in Schoenbaum that Stopes is in error and
 >not a very good archivist and that a record does exist! Only he
 >gives no footnote or source for it.
 >
 >The Worshipful haberdasher company's archivist informs me that the
 >early records covering Bindings are incomplete (possibly due to the
 >great fire in 1666) eg bindings for the period aug 1596-nov 1602 are
 >missing. and in the case of the freedom registers these have
 >complete (less detailed) records, but its index is unreliable.

I'm pretty familiar with the records of the various livery companies in 
the Guildhall Library, and have spent a fair amount of time with the 
Haberdashers' records there. The freedom register the archivist 
mentioned to you is Guildhall Library MS 15857/1, and covers the years 
1526 to 1642. It was apparently compiled from another source, now lost. 
It is a chronological list of the men who became freemen of the 
Haberdashers during those years, with the date of each man's freedom and 
the name of his master (if he became free by apprenticeship). In  the 
front there is an index that lists all the men alphabetically by  first 
name (not last name), and chronologically within each first name. I 
looked for Gilbert Shakespeare in there a few years ago and didn't find 
him. However, that index is far from perfect -- in at  least one case 
I'm aware of, it includes the name of someone who is not included in the 
chronological list of freemen, and I'm fairly certain that not all the 
names in the chronological list are in the index. The earliest surviving 
volume of apprentice bindings (Guildhall Library 15860/1) starts in 
1583, and is not indexed at  all. A few years ago, I spent a few hours 
looking through all the apprentice bindings from 1583 and 1584; I was 
mainly looking for apprentices bound by Richard Tarlton, but I was also 
keeping an eye out for Gilbert Shakespeare, and didn't find his name. If 
you really  wanted to, you could look through those apprentice bindings 
for Gilbert Shakespeare's name (as a master), but it would be a long 
slog. The surviving Minutes of the Haberdashers' Court of Assistants 
also survive from 1583, the earliest volume being Guildhall Library MS 
15842/1; it is also not indexed, so you would need to read through it 
looking for Gilbert's name. Guildhall Library MS 15868 contains the 
Haberdashers' yeomanry wardens' accounts from 1601 to 1661, which 
includes the last 11 years of Gilbert's life, but I haven't looked at 
that and don't know how extensive it is.

Dave Kathman
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

_______________________________________________________________
S H A K S P E R: The Global Shakespeare Discussion List
Hardy M. Cook, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
The S H A K S P E R Web Site <http://www.shaksper.net>

DISCLAIMER: Although SHAKSPER is a moderated discussion list, the 
opinions expressed on it are the sole property of the poster, and the 
editor assumes no responsibility for them.

New Jacobean Play

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 20.0543  Thursday, 29 October 2009

From:       Will Sharpe <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:       Thursday, 29 Oct 2009 16:14:19 +0000
Subject:    New Jacobean Play

[Editor's Note: Will sent me a post about a discovery he saw reported on 
the BBC, but after some investigation withdrew it until he could find 
more information. Martin Wiggins of the Shakespeare Institute expressed 
reservations to Will about the story as it was reported. I lost some of 
files, but here is a reconstruction. Hardy]

 From BBC:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/wales/8328899.stm
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/wales/mid_/8325759.stm

A rare Jacobean manuscript of a play about women's liberation, which was 
found in a trunk at a castle, is expected to fetch 


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