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
  • • SHAKE-SPEARE

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 truly easy to see once you clear away the old misconceptions that obscure what’s really there. Mine is the only life that makes Shakespeare make sense. It’s what has been missing from the story and the history.

I am not online 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 argumentative about my identity and literary legacy. I leave the arguing to those who enjoy it. There are Oxfordian books, websites, and societies brimming with research and discussion. For my partisans and all their efforts, I am ever grateful.

I know the truth of my life, but you must come to your own conclusions. This blog’s raison d’être is self-evidently Truth Will Out, but I do not write it to spoon-feed you what I want you to think. My aim from my first tweet and first post has been to spark the desire in your own mind to make your own discoveries. I want you to read, to question, perchance to find answers to what questions may come. To have fun and get my jokes, especially the old ones. To decide for yourself what to absorb from what you discover. Anything less is mere parroting, rote. Groupthink. Bardolatry.

Take a hard look at what you think you know about Shakespeare, what you were taught. Challenge yourself to wipe the slate clean and start again. Common sense will take you a long way. Don’t blindly believe anything because it’s popular, or you learned it in school, or it has a huge budget funded by duping the credulous tourism. Don’t allow anyone who sells their opinions to do your thinking for you.

Question everything
Do your homework thoroughly
Make up your own mind

Edward Oxenford crown/coronet signature

VERO NIHIL VERIUS