To Thine Own Self Be True

EO signatures in Italian and Latin - Venice 1575 - SHAKE-SPEARE'S HANDWRITINGMy signature in Italian and Latin,
doodled in Venice, June 1575.
Found and photographed by
Michael Delahoyde, 2015. (details)

Edward de Vere
born 12 April 1550 – died 24 June 1604

  • • 17th Earl of Oxford
  • • Lord Great Chamberlain of England
  • • Viscount Bolebec (or Bulbeck), until my son was born in 1593
  • • Baron Scales and Badlesmere
  • • Lord Sanford

I wrote all of it. Honestly, it’s so obvious.

If you want my story bounded in a nutshell, or at least bounded in fourteen pages, start with this summation online at The Atlantic, written by Tom Bethell in 1991. Or download it as a PDF. If you’re up for a bit more, Nina Green has written my life in a manageable 45 page PDF. For a dive into the deep end, my library page Learned Books lists several published biographies and other related works.

Of course you should read the new things I’ve written for this blog, and (re-)read my old things too, the plays and poems.

So much of my life is in that work. It’s easy to see once you know what to look for: the only life that makes Shakespeare make sense.

I am not here to be tetchytetchy adj. Easily annoyed or irritated, peevish, irascible. “Perhaps coined by Shakespeare.” Perhaps my pudding. I gave the word first to Juliet’s nurse, and Troilus got to use it, but the Duchess of York has the best quote. Tetchy[Richard III, IV.4] or disputatious concerning my identity and literary legacy. There are Oxfordian books, societies, and websites covering most of what is known about me. Grateful I am for all of them. I leave the disputation to those who enjoy it, are paid for it, or both.

I know the truth of my life, but you must come to your own conclusions. My aim is to put things in front of you that you enjoy as well as consider. The rest is up to you.

Re-think what you think you know about Shakespeare. Challenge yourself to clean the slate, learn anew. Common sense takes you a long way. Don’t blindly believe anything as gospel because it’s popular, or you learned it in school, or it has a huge budget funded by soaking the credulous tourism, or by allowing anyone selling their opinions to do your thinking for you.

There’s so much out there that you were not taught. Teach yourself.

Question everything
Do your homework thoroughly
Make up your own mind

Edward Oxenford crown/coronet signature