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Shakespeare was he real?
Shakespeare’s work is so ingenious and famous that his work is often referred to as the greatest writer of all time. His sonnets and play are timeless and still studied today for their beauty and meter. But many doubted if he was real. According to those who doubted Shakespeare’s existence, the work that was attributed to him was not actually his work but from someone (who is likely an aristocrat) who does not want his or her identity to be revealed. The fact is, Shakespeare actually wrote the works attributed to him because there are evidence and witnesses that support that indeed he was the one who wrote them.
The most compelling evidence that Shakespeare wrote the works attributed to him is the presence of a witness in the form of a collaborator. Some of Shakespeare’s play were collaborations such as Two Noble Kinsmen whom he collaborated with John Fletcher. His early works like Henry VI and Titus Andronicus was also done in collaboration with other writers (Knapp). The people whom Shakespeare collaborated did not deny their collaborations making them a witness that indeed Shakespeare wrote them and that he is real.
Another evidence that Shakespeare wrote the works attributed to him is that he was a famous writer during his time and his names were all over his works. Shakespeare during his time is already well known as a writer and there are people who know him as such like Ben Johnson (Knapp). It would be very difficult to fake or pretend to have written such wonderful work when one is already in public eyes and scrutinized by the experts during his time. The argument may have stood up if Shakespeare’s work were only appreciated after his death where he could no longer be scrutinized if he indeed wrote them. The fact is, he already scrutinized during his time and indeed, he wrote the works attributed to him.
Those who argue that Shakespeare is not real based their assumption that Shakespeare had no means to educate himself to become such a great writer given his humble and obscure background. According to the anti-Shakesperean argument, his background, education, training, and origin is not compatible with the quality of his work. They argue that during those times, only the aristocrats and the noblemen have access to a good education. In addition, it is also the character of the noblemen not to put their face in the public for fear that they may be criticized if their work did not do well. The Shakespeare critics, however, forgot or did not consider that genius knows no birth or station of life. There is a countless genius in other fields of endeavor who were all of the humble origins. Also, their argument is myopic because their concept of education is limited to going to school or university. As a genius, Shakespeare could have educated himself and the words just naturally flowed out of him. There is a lot of genius who is also like him who did not finish university education - Einstein is a college drop-out, and so is Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg. Also, these geniuses are also of humble origin if being an aristocrat is the standard of comparison.
To conclude, Shakespeare wrote the works attributed to him as there are proof and witnesses to support that he was indeed the one who wrote his work. The most compelling evidence is the people whom he collaborated with many of his works such as Two Noble Kinsmen, Henry VI, and Titus Andronicus. The people whom Shakespeare collaborated with are a witness that he existed. Also, he was already scrutinized during his lifetime for his work attesting that indeed he wrote them. The argument of the critics who asserted that it is not Shakespeare who wrote his work is based on a myopic perspective that his background is not compatible with the eminence of his work. This argument can be easily debunked as many genii throughout time came from humble origin who are also self-educated just like Shakespeare. Shakespeare wrote the works attributed to him because there is evidence that supported it. This evidence has not yet been debunked by anti-Shakespeare critics.
- Knapp, Alex. “Yes, Shakespeare Really Did Write Shakespeare”. Forbes, Forbes Magazine, 8 May 2012
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