fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the
people some of the time, but you can't fool all of the
people all of the time."
"That is about the best play that Lord Bacon ever
after attending a Romeo & Juliet
Francis Bacon :
"For there is
nothing so subtle and abtruse, but when it is once thorougly
understood and published to the world, even a dull wit can
carry it."- Wisdom of the Ancients 1609
Jonson on Francis Bacon
after his death :
"He who have
filled up all numbers and performed that in our tongue which
may be compared or preferred either to insolent Greece or
haughty Rome...In short, within his view, and about his
times , were all the wits born that could honor a language
or help study. Now things daily fall; wits grow downward and
eloquence grows backward, so that he may be named and stand
as the mark and acme of our language."
"And certainly it is most true, and
one of the great secrets of nature, that the minds of men
are more open to impressions and affections when many are
gathered together than when they are alone."
"So give authors their due , as you
give time his due, which is to discover truth."
Who Wrote Shakespeare?
EVENING SEMINAR: Tues., Jan. 29, 2002 Washington D.C.
6:30 to 9 p.m.
One of literatures greatest mysteries is the
identity of the author of the plays and sonnets that are
attributed to William Shakespeare.
Walt Whitman, Henry James, Mark Twain, Sigmund Freud,
Vladimir Nabakov, David McCullough, Sir John Gielgud, and
Kenneth Branagh are among the lettered individuals who
have expressed doubts about Shakespeares
authorship. Many believe that the true author was
Edward de Vere, the 17th Earl
Join us for what promises to be a hot and lively
courtroom drama as two renowned experts on
the authorship question are cross-examined by two of the
best trial lawyers in the country. Gail Paster, editor of
the Shakespeare Quarterly and professor of English at
George Washington University, is an advocate for
Shakespeare. Richard F. Whalen, past president of the
Shakespeare Oxford Society and author of Shakespeare: Who
Was He?, presents the case for Edward de Vere.
They are cross-examined by Robert S. Bennett, renowned
trial lawyer with Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom
LLP, and former counsel to President Clinton and
Secretary of Defense Caspar Weinberger; and by E. Barrett
Prettyman Jr., senior partner at Hogan and Hartson,
former special assistant to President Kennedy, and recent
inspector general of the District of Columbia. William F.
Causey of Nixon Peabody LLP moderates the
The evening concludes with a discussion-and the
audiences verdict on who wrote Shakespeare.
Ring Auditorium, Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture
Two Letters from the Program Coordinators in response
to why Francis Bacon was left
out of the
"Based on our research, Bacon was an early
candidate for the author, but he has been discredited
with much evidence. The Bacon theory has not been
seriously put forward for about 80 years.
Certainly the question of Bacon's authorship could be
asked duirng the question-and-answer period of the
program, which should be very lively to say the
"The Shakespeare authorship question has been going on
for almost 300 years. During that time, many candidtates
have emerged as possible authors, including Bacon.
However, during the last 60 or 70 years only one
candidate has emerged as the most viable and likely
person, and that is Edward de Vere. Bacon has now been
largely discredited as a serious candidate. All of the
authorship debates in the past two or three decades have
been between the Stratford man and De Vere- the most
famous being The American University debate in 1987
involving three Supreme Court Justices. So we decided to
limit the Smithsonian presentation to the most viable
candidate- De Vere.I hope this responds to your question.
If not, let me know and I'll see that you get more
information. Thanks for the question."