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The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 24.0492 Wednesday, 23 October 2013
Date: October 22, 2013 8:52:32 PM EDT
Subject: Re: SHAKSPER: Bate
Of the Mucedorus attribution Gerald Downs writes:
..here we go again... Fingerprints.... The additions this time total something over 200 lines, with the evidence in one scene; how many lines is that? ... In 1950 Leo Kirschbaum argued that Mucedorus is a bad quarto. I’m sure he’s right (though I haven’t seen his MLR article) because he was a proponent of MR but Shorthand almost always makes a better case... There seems to be a lot of scholarly naivety to goad newspaper credulity these days.
Granted, with such a small sample it’s unlikely the Mucedorus Additions can be pushed beyond a strong Maybe. However...
So, yeah, the media loves to blow these kinds of things out of proportion. And it ain’t a Shakespearean autograph manuscript of Loves Labours Won or Iphis and Ianthe—it’s just a few dozen dashed-off lines to tart up a bad [if fun] play. But the fact that the hoo-hah has been exploited doesn’t make for a valid counter argument.