The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 15.1679  Wednesday, 8 September 2004

[1]     From:   John Briggs <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Tuesday, 7 Sep 2004 13:26:22 +0100
        Subj:   Re: SHK 15.1670 Question on Measure for Measure

[2]     From:   Thomas Larque <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Tuesday, 7 Sep 2004 16:38:45 +0100
        Subj:   Re: SHK 15.1670 Question on Measure for Measure

[3]     From:   Thomas Larque <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Tuesday, 7 Sep 2004 17:55:40 +0100
        Subj:   Re: SHK 15.1670 Question on Measure for Measure

[4]     From:   Peter Bridgman <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Tuesday, 7 Sep 2004 18:28:37 +0100
        Subj:   Re: SHK 15.1670 Question on Measure for Measure

[5]     From:   Tom Krause <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Tuesday, 7 Sep 2004 23:57:27 -0400
        Subj:   SHK 15.1670: Question on Measure for Measure

From:           John Briggs <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Tuesday, 7 Sep 2004 13:26:22 +0100
Subject: 15.1670 Question on Measure for Measure
Comment:        Re: SHK 15.1670 Question on Measure for Measure

Tom Krause wrote:

 >A certain
 >character saves a character that Shakespeare intentionally named for a
 >coin (Angelo) from becoming debased.  All I'm suggesting is the
 >character who saves the coin from debasement (Mariana) is intentionally
 >named for one of Shakespeare's contemporaries (Juan de Mariana) who
 >argued against debasement.

Actually, we don't know that Shakespeare intentionally named Angelo
after the coin.  There is only the familiar mettle/metal gag and
similar, but not clearly directed at Angelo's name.  There is not even
the obvious joke "noble Angelo".  In fact, there is only a single
angel/Angelo reference - there seems to be very little play on Angelo's
name.  The names seem to be just names.  Unfortunately, we can't be
certain of the order of "All's Well That Ends Well", "Othello" and
"Measure for Measure", so we don't know which use of "Mariana" comes
first - the three plays have overlaps in names, themes and sources.  One
could suppose that Shakespeare repeats himself, the first time as
tragedy, the second as farce - but that is just a guess.

John Briggs

From:           Thomas Larque <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Tuesday, 7 Sep 2004 16:38:45 +0100
Subject: 15.1670 Question on Measure for Measure
Comment:        Re: SHK 15.1670 Question on Measure for Measure

I do not have time to make endless detailed answers to Tom Krause and Ed
Taft on the subject of Krause's essay on "Measure for Measure", and
rather obviously have much less to motivate my expenditure of time on
the question than the man who wrote the essay, or the one who rather
oddly approved it for publication in a scholarly journal.

I am fairly certain that the flaws in Krause's claims and method are
obvious to the vast majority of those who will read the piece, and I am
equally certain that Krause and Taft will never admit that they are
wrong, even as Krause is driven to make more and more extreme and
ridiculous claims about his "research" (his latest is to claim that a
particular character name "might" be partially based on that of Nero
because it ends with an 'o'. More sensible commentators might ask
themselves how many letters there are in the English alphabet, and in
particular how many Italianate names - particularly those in
Shakespeare's plays - end with the letter 'o', before making such a
ludicrous assumption, even in passing).

I will however continue to make answers for as long as I have time and
patience, although they may be shorter and less detailed than I might
ideally  wish.  I'll try to pick out the highlights of Krause's recent
reply to me, and respond to those.

 >Your reference to "claims" (plural) shows that your are not getting the
 >point.  My basic "claim" - singular - is that Shakespeare modestly
 >extended a theme that was already abundantly present in the play.
 >Everything else - what you seem to consider "trivia" - are matters that
 >the basic claim helps to explain - not premises needed to support the

If you had written a different essay, this might be a reasonable
argument, but in fact the essay that you did write is based almost
entirely on trying to claim that "debasement" is the major theme of both
"Hamlet" and "Measure for Measure" on the basis of "trivia" and supposed
wordplay that you like to imagine that Shakespeare inserted into the
play and you are merely 'rediscovering'.  Discussion of this "trivia"
takes up at least 95% of your essay, so you can hardly pretend that the
main theme of the essay is anything other than the "trivia" which you
like to think that you have dug up.

What, other than the "trivia", do you have to offer to suggest that
Shakespeare's metaphorical references to coinage, debasement, and
forgery (or at least those references which are generally recognised by
other critics, and are not entirely personal to you) were not precisely
that, artistic metaphors, rather than the single major 'allegorical'
theme of the play?  Precious little, it seems, or you would have spent
more time producing real evidence (if you had any) and less playing
pointless wordgames of the kind that anybody can play with just about
any piece of English writing.

 >A certain
 >character saves a character that Shakespeare intentionally named for a
 >coin (Angelo) from becoming debased.  All I'm suggesting is the
 >character who saves the coin from debasement (Mariana) is intentionally
 >named for one of Shakespeare's contemporaries (Juan de Mariana) who
 >argued against debasement.

Now the Angelo / Angel (coin) argument is probably the strongest in your
essay - since Shakespeare's text explicitly, as you say, makes a
metaphorical connection between Angelo and a coin.

"Now, good my lord,
Let there be some more test made of my metal,
Before so noble and so great a figure
Be stamp'd upon it" (1.1.47-50).

It is unsurprising, therefore, that you did not invent this argument,
but simply borrowed it from other sources.  The Arden 2 "Measure for
Measure" (edited by J.W. Lever, 1965), for example, already points out
"the coin imagery" of this section, and also - in regard to 3.2.264-265,
"O, what may man within him hide / Though angel on the outward side!" -
makes explicit the likely link between the name Angelo and the Angel
coin, noting "Angelo is the spurious 'angel' in terms of the coin
imagery, and also ...".  If this were all that your essay consisted of,
then it would be merely an act of quotation or plagiarism, and would
have no value whatever as a new academic essay.  The only original
arguments that you add to this sort of material are your claims based in
"trivia" and supposed wordplay, which are therefore - rather obviously -
the main purpose and only distinguishing characteristic of your essay.

Why am I willing to consider accepting the Angelo / Angel wordplay, but
so ready to reject the Krause attempts to add various new forms of
wordplay on a similar theme?  The answer is very simple.  The Angelo /
Angel theory is based on a detailed reference to Shakespeare's writing.
  The four lines quoted above from the first scene of the play seem very
clearly and obviously to be a reference to coinage.  The Arden even
keeps the Folio spelling ("metal" not "mettle") which would make this an
overt punning metaphor, with the coin imagery as Angelo's primary
meaning.  This is not an obscure hidden code that could easily have been
wrongly invented by a commentator and projected at the play, nor one
which we could easily duplicate with other texts, instead the coin
reference is a deep and integrated part of Shakespeare's original text.

Let's compare this, for a moment, with the many Krause theories, and
note how threadbare they look by comparison.  Note how often the Krause
argument depends entirely upon the coincidence of a single word or just
a part of a word, with no detailed textual reference or support to
suggest that Krause's interpretation is correct, and with almost all of
the evidence for the claim being based not on Shakespeare's text, but on
Krause's own theorising about the text.  As a result we find ourselves
faced by an entirely circular logic.  The reason that Krause suspects
that there is a reference to a particular person is because it would fit
with his theory of the meaning of the play, but at the same time the
only evidence that Krause has for his theory as to the meaning of the
play is that it contains these references to particular people.  There
is nothing holding up Krause's claims except other claims made by
Krause, which themselves are held up by nothing, but the first set of
claims.  And so, ad infinitum.

 >A certain
 >character saves a character that Shakespeare intentionally named for a
 >coin (Angelo) from becoming debased.  All I'm suggesting is the
 >character who saves the coin from debasement (Mariana) is intentionally
 >named for one of Shakespeare's contemporaries (Juan de Mariana) who
 >argued against debasement.

Now here, for example, we have a lot of Krause theory.  Krause *assumes*
that Shakespeare would have considered Mariana to have saved Angelo from
being tainted by sin (actually, wasn't that the Duke using Mariana as a
tool?), he *assumes* that there is a connection between this risk of
moral taint and the deliberate "debasement" of coinage by governments
decreasing the level of base metal (but when Shakespeare talks of coins
full of base metal, he is usually talking about forgery or coin-clipping
or error, as he does explicitly in the example in 1.1, where Angelo
states that the figure of the Duke could only be stamped upon him if he
had been tested and proved to be sufficiently good metal, there is no
reference in the play to the Duke or anybody else deliberately
authorising coins with base metal), the reference to deliberate
debasement by an inflationary government therefore exists primarily in
Krause's imagination and is not overtly expressed within the play
itself, and finally Krause *assumes* that this inflationary debasement
theme in "Measure for Measure" (which he just made up) proves that when
Shakespeare named his character Mariana, he must have been doing so as a
reference to Juan de Mariana, who wrote a book condemning inflationary
debasement ... but, oooppss ... we're still not finished. Unfortunately
Juan de Mariana wrote that book *AFTER* Shakespeare wrote this play, and
there seems to be no evidence anywhere in the world (certainly none that
Taft and Krause can find) which proves that Mariana was famously
associated, by his own countrymen let alone by people in England, with
the subject of debasement until he wrote that book, so Krause
conveniently assumes that Mariana must have been excessively interested
in the subject several years beforehand, and that Shakespeare *must*
have heard about Mariana's interest by some indirect means or other (not
that Krause can explain how, he just must have), and what's Krause's
evidence for all this? ... Why - the fact that Shakespeare called his
character Mariana, of course. So there we have a perfectly circular
argument, with no evidence to support it at either end of the chain.

 >The other alternative - the one which you seem to be 100% confident in -
 >is that Shakespeare just happened to give the name "Mariana" to the
 >character who saves the coin from debasement.
 >Which alternative is the more far-fetched?

Which do you think?  The one where we have to make up an interpretation
of Shakespeare's play, make up a chain of links between Shakespeare and
Spain for him to hear about Mariana, and make up a fame for Mariana for
which we have no evidence on an opinion that we do not even know that he
discussed in any detail with anybody before that date?  Or the one where
we accept that Shakespeare used a Christian-name which appears in a good
deal of Renaissance literature and happens by pure coincidence to have
been the surname of a man who somewhere virtually on the other side of
the Renaissance world was destined eventually to write about
inflationary debasement (a theme that Shakespeare does not seem to treat
on in this play)?

But I've been criticising you for not providing evidence for your
claims, so here is some in support of mine.  I put the name "Mariana"
into the EEBO (Early English Books Online) database, and found a good
variety of hits before and after Shakespeare wrote "Measure for
Measure".  One of these hits was on a play by Robert Wilson,  published
in 1591, shortly before Shakespeare wrote "Measure for Measure".  The
play is called "A pleasant commodie, of faire Em the Millers daughter of
Manchester with the love of William the Conqueror".

To my great amusement, this play turns out not only to contain a
"Mariana", but by her second scene this Mariana is immediately involved
in the plotting of a bed-trick, by which an unwanted suitor is tricked
into marrying a woman who has fallen in love with him, and to whom he
originally committed himself, instead of the woman he was wrongfully

I'll describe the plot.  William the Conqueror (now King of England)
sees the picture of a beautiful woman on the shield of the Marquis of
Lubeck, who is staying in his court.  He tells Lubeck that he has fallen
in love with the woman in the picture and asks him, if he can do it
without dishonouring himself, to pass the woman's love on to William.
Lubeck is happy to do so, saying that the woman is Blanche, the daughter
of his King (the King of Denmark) and deserves a love far better than
that of a mere Marquis. William is delighted and vows a religious oath
to rapidly obtain the lady's love, and declares that he and Lubeck will
travel to the Danish court with William disguised as an English Knight,
with the alias of Robert of Windsor.

William as Robert and Lubeck arrive at the Danish court, but William is
hugely disappointed by Blanche, who he considers ugly.  Blanche,
however, promptly falls in love with "Robert" alias William at first
sight.  William, meanwhile, is more interested by the sight of another
girl, who the Danish King is holding as a prisoner-of-war for ransom.
This girl's name is Mariana.  She is the sworn love of Lubeck.  William
declares his love for her, and Lubeck is horrified, but William swears
that he will challenge him for Mariana's love.

After a break for the subplot (the story of the said "Em"), Mariana
returns with Lubeck.  Lubeck has danced with Mariana at a masque,
pushing aside the rival William who was making for her, and in revenge
William has stabbed him.  Their identities revealed (both having been
masked), they forgive one another for the affront and the assault, but
the rivalry for Mariana remains.  The two men exit, and Blanche enters,
bitterly angry with Mariana as a result of her jealousy.  A letter for
Mariana is brought in, and Blanche rudely opens and reads it - it is a
love-letter from William making it clear that he wishes to obtain
Mariana, and morally cuckold his former friend.  Blanche is still more
angry, but Mariana reads the full letter and realises that the supposed
Sir Robert is actually William the Conqueror, a King and suitable match
for Blanche.  Mariana promptly declares that William shall not push
aside Lubeck in her love, and decides to win the friendship of Blanche
and retain her love, Lubeck, by assisting Blanche in her pursuit of the
disguised William the Conqueror.

After another break for the "Em" subplot, Mariana and Lubeck return.
Lubeck in a tone of self-sacrifice declares his continuing love for
Mariana, but begs her to love William the Conqueror instead of himself,
in order to obtain wealth and position worthy of her.  Their discussion
is interrupted by the appearance of Blanche, and Lubeck leaves.  Mariana
promptly suggests to Blanche that:

"The next tyme that Sir Robert shall come
In his woonted sort to solicit me with Love,
I will seeme to agree and like of any thing
That the Knight shal demaund so far foorth
As it be no impeachment to my chastitie:
And to conclude, poynt some place for to meete the man,
For my conveiance from the Denmarke Court:
Which determined upon, he will appoynt some certaine time
For our departure: whereof you having intelligence,
You may soone set downe a plot to were the English Crowne".

Blanche leaves, and William arrives, confident that Lubeck has told
Mariana to love William instead of himself.  Mariana persuades him to
help her escape from the Court, where she is prisoner, and William
agrees if she gives him her consent.  She tells him that she will wear a
mask in order to escape undetected, and she makes him swear an oath that
he will not offend her chastity.

After another short break, William is shown eloping with Blanche, who he
thinks is Mariana.  Blanche urges him to follow his former oath:

"But this I urge you with your former oath
You shall not seeke to violate mine honour,
Untill our marriage rights be all performed".

And William replies:

"Mariana, here I sweare to thee by heaven,
And by the honour that I beare to Armes,
Never to seeke or crave at hands of thee
The spoyle of honourable chastitie
Untill we do attaine the English coast,
Where thou shalt be my right espoused Queene".

After William steals away with Blanche he is pursued to England by the
Danish King, who demands to have his daughter returned.  After some
confusion William finally realises that he has eloped with Blanche, but
refuses to marry her, expressing a new misogynistic hatred for deceiving
women.  At this point the comic sub-plot arrives, and William - seeing
their romantic tangles - is converted back to a respect for women.  He
finally accepts that Blanche is beautiful and modest, and agrees to
marry her.  The romantic confusions of the sub-plot (which I haven't
bothered to read) are resolved, and everybody lives happily ever after.

So after all that, I think we can be fairly certain that it is more than
a coincidence that Shakespeare's Mariana carries the same name as
Wilson's Mariana, since both women are involved in very similar
bed-tricks that persuade men to marry the right women.  Furthermore, it
seems obvious that my theory is on much stronger footing than Krause's
alternative suggestion of Shakespeare's "source" for the name Mariana,
since my suggestion does not hinge on a personal interpretation of the
play (for which there is no direct evidence) as Krause's does, but is
instead based on the main plot of both plays where numerous scenes are
given over to the bed-tricks by which the two men are persuaded to marry
the morally right woman by mistake, when they would rather have married
or slept with the morally wrong woman deliberately.  Furthermore I do
not have to invent Krausian fantasies about how the mere conversations
of a Spanish academic should end up in the ears of an ordinary English
playwright, nor do I have to play with time to make the contents of a
source appear in history before the source was written (there is no
evidence that anybody in Spain, let alone anybody in England, associated
Juan de Mariana with the debasement of currency before he wrote his
book), by contrast my suggested source is an English play, which would
have been written and performed by Shakespeare's fellow actors in a
theatre in the very city where he lived, and then printed and sold in
the very London bookshops that he frequented.  While it is all but
impossible that Shakespeare would have heard the views of the Spanish
academic Juan de Mariana before writing "Measure for Measure", it is
equally all but impossible that he would not have seen the script or a
performance of the very well known play "Fair Em", which - to top it all
- was written by Robert Wilson (it is presumed, although the play was
printed anonymously) in circa. 1590 for performance by Lord Strange's
company.  Guess which company it was that, only two years later, gave
what was almost certainly the first performance of Shakespeare's "Henry
VI: part one"?  It is widely assumed that Shakespeare had joined
Strange's men (whose patron later became the Earl of Derby) as his first
theatrical company, in which case he is most likely not only to have
read Fair Em, and to have seen it performed, but quite possibly acted in
it himself.  Shakespeare's membership of Strange's is the only piece of
conjecture that I need to enter into to support my theory, and it really
makes no difference to me whether he was there or not, since he was
clearly associated with the company, and as a novice actor and
playwright he must have been attending plays in London and reading them
when they were published, so there is little doubt that he must have
known "Fair Em" before writing "Measure for Measure" in which he used
one of the character names and a very similar plot device, and - most
revealing of all - the character name and the plot device were kept

So, to ask Krause's question back at him, which sounds less likely to you? -

1) Shakespeare named his "Measure for Measure" character Mariana as part
of an obscure and peculiar allegory about the inflationary debasement of
coinage (a theme that Shakespeare never directly mentions in "Measure
for Measure"), referring to a Spanish academic in another country who
had not yet published anything to do with inflationary debasement of
coinage, but would do so *AFTER* Shakespeare wrote his play (at which
time Mariana's book would begin to circulate in Spain), and despite the
fact that we have no record of anybody in the world at this time
associating the name "Juan de Mariana" with the topic of debasement of
currency, let alone anybody suggesting that he was so famous as an
exponent of the subject that his surname alone would be understood as a
reference to this subject in foreign countries, we must assume that he
was a major advocate of this subject before he wrote his book (and
before Shakespeare wrote his play) and that by some imaginary invisible
system Mariana's Spanish views were carried to Shakespeare in London
without leaving any trace, printed or written, in the historical record.

*** OR ***

2)  Shakespeare borrowed the name from "Fair Em", an English play that
was written and performed in London at a time that Shakespeare was quite
probably a member of the very company for which that play was written
and by whom it was performed, and even if he was not directly present in
the company, Shakespeare would certainly have been present in the London
theatres and bookshops where the play was performed and sold.
Shakespeare probably borrowed the name because the two plays shared a
major plot device, in which the character "Mariana" was involved in both

So which theory do you prefer, Tom Krause?

Since this has reached enormous length after my unexpected discovery (do
you think Ed Taft would print an article about that?  or has somebody
already pointed out this likely source for Shakespeare's "Mariana"?), I
will leave the rest of Krause's message to answer at another time.

Thomas Larque.

From:           Thomas Larque <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Tuesday, 7 Sep 2004 17:55:40 +0100
Subject: 15.1670 Question on Measure for Measure
Comment:        Re: SHK 15.1670 Question on Measure for Measure

 >>First, currency issues and Mariana's link to them were well known long
 >>before he published his book. Second, you seem to think that Shakespeare
 >>does not put little allegories in his plays. You are dead wrong. Look
at the
 >>correspondences between the main plot of TN and the famous Anjou affair.
 >As there are no "correspondences between the main plot of TN and the
 >famous Anjou affair", this is not the crushing rejoinder that Edmund
 >Taft must imagine it to be.  Dame Frances Yates once compared Henri III
 >to Hamlet, but did not - as far as I am aware - compare his brother
 >Alencon/Anjou to Sir Andrew Aguecheek.

I might add, furthermore, that not only would hardly anybody accept
Taft's belief that "Twelfth Night" is an allegorical representation of
the Anjou affair (if John Briggs is right to suspect that this is what
Taft is referring to), but also that even if this was a genuine
allegorical reference it is still nothing like the "allegory" produced
by Tom Krause.

If Tom Krause had created the "allegory" that Ed Taft sees in "Twelfth
Night", then we could rest assured that virtually nothing in the play
would have anything to do with the actual people or the events in which
they were involved, instead we would simply see a few one-word long
"coincidences", particularly in names.  So that Olivia would have been
called some variant on the name Elizabeth (Betty?  Isabella?), and
Andrew Aguecheek would have had some variant of Anjou's name or title.
Now I wouldn't put it past Tom Krause in his more idiotic moments to
claim that just such a "coincidence" occurs (after all Andrew,
Aguecheek, Allencon and Anjou all start with 'A' - just as Nero and
Claudio both end with 'o': Krause seeing mystical significance in the
latter event), but for any sensible person it is fairly obvious that no
such "coincidences" occur.  Nor do they occur in "Game at Chess",
despite the fact that we know that it is an allegory, and know in many
instances who it was about (as did the audiences at the time).

In short, even if some Renaissance plays were allegories, it seems most
unlikely that - in the Renaissance or at any other time - these
allegories took the form of the "allegory" that Tom Krause claims to see
in "Measure for Measure".  Instead, Tom Krause's "allegory" is a
peculiar literary critical invention, designed to allow a literary
critic to look clever without actually requiring any real action on the
part of the playwright (you can play the Krause game with just about any
set of names, and any subject or theme, in just about every work of
Literature).  Of course Krause did not personally invent this method, a
variety of would-be literary critical nutcases have been there before
him, including simply thousands of mutually contradictory

Thomas Larque.

From:           Peter Bridgman <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Tuesday, 7 Sep 2004 18:28:37 +0100
Subject: 15.1670 Question on Measure for Measure
Comment:        Re: SHK 15.1670 Question on Measure for Measure

Tom Krause asks ...

 >I'm still curious as to where you get 1603, instead of 1604 (I asked you
 >once before).

"MISTRESS OVERDONE:  Thus, what with the war, what with the sweat, what
with the gallows and what with poverty, I am custom-shrunk".

In 1604, England signed a peace treaty with Spain.  If there was a war
on, the play must have been written before the peace treaty.  Also 1603
was a plague year ("the sweat"), while 1604 was not.

"POMPEY: You have not heard of the proclamation, have you?
MISTRESS OVERDONE: What proclamation, man?
POMPEY: All houses in the suburbs of Vienna must be plucked down".

On 16 September 1603 there was a proclamation calling for the pulling
down of brothels and gaming houses in London's suburbs.  This included
the area around the Globe.

Peter Bridgman

From:           Tom Krause <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Tuesday, 7 Sep 2004 23:57:27 -0400
Subject: Question on Measure for Measure
Comment:        SHK 15.1670: Question on Measure for Measure

For Thomas Larque:  I realize that when you wrote the post that I
respond to below you did not have the benefit of my most recent post, in
which I anticipated and addressed (well, refuted) most if not all of
your arguments.  On the theory that you might have already changed your
views based on that post, I am going to limit my replies in this post to
just a few points.  If your next post shows that you still haven't seen
the error of your ways, I'll try to come up with another way of
explaining it all to you.

Thomas Larque writes:

"I do believe that new things can be argued about Shakespeare, I simply
hold all such arguments to the same standard of evidence to which I hold
all other arguments."

You need to give us examples of what kinds of arguments you accept.  At
this point, you do not appear to have any intuitive grasp on the
difference between cases where the "coincidence" explanation is
satisfactory (e.g. the authorship question and your St. George example)
and where it isn't.  Nor do you seem to be able to distinguish between
an argument that yields a conclusion that requires rejection of much
more probable theories (e.g. the authorship question and your St. George
example) and one that doesn't.

There is a spectrum from "impossible" to "highly plausible":  I rate
your St. George argument "impossible," the anti-Stratfordian theories
"highly implausible,"  the Shakeshaftian theories "somewhat plausible,"
the identification of the "Dark Lady" as Emilia Lanier "plausible," and
the theory that MFM's Mariana is named for Juan de Mariana "highly
plausible."  For you, are they all simply "impossible"?  Give us an
example of Shakespearean scholarship or interpretation based on
circumstantial evidence that you find plausible.

Thomas Larque writes:

"The argument about Horatio is identical in form to Krause's method of
working at many points in the essay that Taft acclaims so"

Reread and try to understand my last post if you still believe this.

Thomas Larque goes on to argue that anyone who believes that St. Luke
might be a reference to Luke Kirby is intellectually obligated to
believe "that any reference to a Saint in a Renaissance play is actually
likely to refer to any martyr of the same name . . ."

Read closely Thomas:  Neither Ed Taft nor I are saying that "St. Luke's"
definitely refers to Luke Kirby.  In fact, I added the Luke Kirby point
long after Ed first read and accepted the essay - it is hardly the
essential point that you make it out to be.  As I have said throughout
this thread, there are other plausible explanations, including that St.
Luke's was randomly selected.

On the other hand, Luke Kirby does fit fairly well with everything else
that I have proposed about the play.  If I am right that Mariana is Juan
de Mariana - as indicated both by the role Mariana plays in the
debasement allegory and the fact that Mariana's brother can only
correspond to Federigo Spinola - then the moated grange probably points
to Juan de Mariana as well.  And a notorious moated grange that points
to the Jesuit Mariana is Lyford Grange, where the Jesuit Edmund Campion
was captured.  Was this an intentional reference to Campion?  I don't
know for sure.  Maybe Shakespeare had Baddesley Clinton in mind
(assuming Peter Bridgman is correct that Baddesley Clinton was a
"grange," and that Shakespeare's audience would have recognized it as
such), and was pointing to the Jesuit Mariana through the Jesuit Henry
Garnet. Or maybe - although I think this is less likely - he felt that
he had sufficiently identified Mariana and just thought that a "moated
grange" was a romantic setting for the abandoned Mariana.

But let me add that IF the Shakeshaftians are right - i.e. that
Shakespeare had a connection to both Thomas Cottam and Edmund Campion -
then Shakespeare most certainly knew of Luke Kirby (who stood trial with
Campion and was executed along with Cottam) and quite possibly was
sympathetic to him.  For me, that makes it all the more likely that the
moated grange is Lyford Grange and St. Luke's refers to Luke Kirby.
Given that there are some prominent scholars who believe the
Shakeshaftian theory, and who continue to come up with new evidence and
arguments to support their claim, I think it makes sense to keep Luke
Kirby in the essay, don't you?  Or are they all wrong too?  If so, will
they still be wrong if they come up with more evidence in the future?

Speaking of his "demonstration" that a reference to St. George could be
a reference to George Blaurock, Thomas Larque writes:

"OK.  It's all garbage, of course, and produced with much less time and
effort than Krause is likely to have put into his own similarly
nonsensical claims (and I'm sure I could do much better if I used all of
my reference books and spent days or weeks rather than minutes working
on my deliberately false "theories"), but it is Krause-style garbage,
and this is effectively all that most of Krause's arguments consist of."

Why do you say "most" of my arguments are garbage?  Which ones do you
think have merit?

Seriously, you have not come close to duplicating my methods, which
makes it clear that when you wrote that, you did not understand them.
If you want to duplicate my methods, here is what you need to do:

(1) show me where Anabaptist references - metaphorical or otherwise -
appear in several of Shakespeare's plays, as recognized by scholars
other than yourself.

(2) show me ten or more express references in Henry VI  that scholars
other than you recognize are to an Anabaptist theme.

(3) show me an allegory in which the characters of Henry VI interact in
some fashion that would convey a message about Anabaptists.

(4) show me how the Anabaptist explanation in fact explains some of the
behavior of the characters that other scholars have found difficult to

(5) show me independent evidence that Shakespeare had Anabaptist leanings.

(6) show me how the Anabaptist theory explains a number of other
references for which no satisfactory explanation has been proposed.

If you can do all that (and that's somewhat less than I have done for
debasement in MFM), I'll acknowledge that you have essentially
duplicated my methods.  In fact, if you can do that, I'll probably say
that you have identified a possible "Anabaptist theme" in Henry VI.  But
you can't, because there isn't.  And that's the difference.  The bottom
line is that the George-George coincidences you have identified have no
probative value absent some support along the lines of steps (1)-(6).
As of course you know, they are the sort of trivial coincidences that
one can expect to find in a large body of data.

Tom Krause

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