Genesis of Hamlet in Ovid: 1560, 1564, 1565, 1567; The Fable of O(vid).

Anonymous, 1560 (Edward de Vere, heir apparent):

Fable of Ovid, 1560 Frontispiece

Fig. 1

The attribution to the above work by Ovid, although when first printed in 1560 as an anonymous, non-attributed work, is credited by scholars as certainly the work of Arthur Golding.

   In the 15th and 16th centuries, the Goldings built a highly respected family, prospering in the cloth trade.  By the time Arthur was born (ca. 1535/6), his family was already emminently wealthy due, not only to their successful cloth trade, but to successful marriages with heiresses with large personal fortunes.  At birth, Arthur’s station in life was relatively secure.

   In 1546, when Arthur was eleven years of age, his father died.  In 1548, his half-sister, Margery, the child of John de Veer, the 16th Earl of Oxford and his first wife, married John, providing the Goldings with a family connection to the House of Vere.  The upshot of this is that Arthur Golding, when John de Veer died in 1562, leaving his son, Edward de Vere his land and fortune, became one of a string of renowned scholars who educated the young Edward, now the 17th Earl of Oxford.

    Oxford was twelve at the time of his father’s death, and became a ward of the crown, and was sent to live and be brought up and educated in the household of William Cecil, later, Lord Burghley.  From 1562 onward, Edward’s teachers, besides Arthur Golding, were respected and established scholars:  Sir Thomas Smith, cartographer and Anglo-Saxon scholar, the Latin scholar, Bartholomew Clarke, and the antiquarian Laurence Nowell, to mention but a few.    Nowell, in 1563, said to William Cecil, that as a teacher, he would soon no longer be required as tutor to the young earl, so precocious and accomplished he had become at so young an age.

   It is noteworthy that Cecil had one of the finest libraries at the time, including the only known copy in England of the Icelandic epic poem, Beowulf, and well as the Gesta Danoram (the history of the Danish people). written by Saxo Grammaticus (ca. 1150 – ca. 1220).  It is highly likely, that Edward de Vere first read Saxo’s story of Amleth, Prince of Denmark in this library.  This particular story, arguably more than any other (except, perhaps, Ovid’s Metamorphoses), from the time of his first reading, resonated with his own life, and continued to be an obsession with him for the remainder of his life.  Of all the works in the Shakespeare canon, Hamlet (based heavily on the story of the allegedly historical Amleth) is virtually the fictionalized autobiography of Edward de Vere, 17th Earl of Oxford.

   It is speculated, with good reason, that Ovid’s Metamorphoses was the translation from Latin to English by Arthur Golding.  Some scholars, also with substantial and convincing arguments, surmise that the young Edward de Vere translated part, if not all, the fifteen books in the opus.

This, however, remains, at this point, highly convincing documented and supported speculation.

   The supporting evidence comes from the internal clues stemming from analyses of frontispieces, dedications, prefaces, and the translation itself, pointing both to Golding, but perhaps more to the work of a young Edward de Vere.

   Is there any encryption evidence (internal evidence in its own right) in the plaintexts of the work attributed to Arthur Golding (frontispieces, preface, etc.)  as well?  Do the encryptions point to the Statford Shakespere, Sir Francis Bacon, Christopher Marlowe, Sir Edward Dyer, or others?  The birthdates of the latter partial list are not supportive of translation attribution, especially when the date 1560 turns up.

Frontispiece, The Fable of  O, 1560 (Array 45):  Edward de Vere at Ten years old:

   A more careful and closer look at the actual frontispiece of 1560 presents what for us is the idiosyncratic and variant orthography present throughout the spelling of words, as was predominant in the spelling of English before the codification of specific rules of grammar and syntax.  This was convenient for the writers of the time, as any given word could be spelled in differing ways, and  in the same plaintext.  One can only speculate as to why this was done.  In all likelihood, this was a given printer’s choice.  Perhaps not.  Perhaps the ‘altered’ spelling reflected the physical alignment of individual words on the page so as to appear more aesthetic, or to conserve space on a page; or, as some suspect, the misspellings were deliberate  so as to alert those in the know that coded words or messages were present in the plaintext, and could be revealed using an equidistant letter sequence method of decryption.  In short, the misspellings might have been specifically planted as internal  clues, intended for certain readers who knew what these misspellings were glaring anouncements to decrypt the frontispiece.

   Notice, then, that two words in the 1560 frontispiece above that appear to be unnecessary misspellings, suggesting a code or codes may be within the plaintext.  The first is the word intended to be read and pronounced as translated, but for a non-obvious and unexplainable reason is spelled as traslated.  The a directly above the larger O in Ovid has some sort of diacritical mark (a “bar”) over the top of the letter a that the reader is to assume represents the missing n in translation.  At first glance, it does seem the absent n and the small bar above the a is little more than a printer’s choice so as to conserve space.  However, to my eyes, this was unnecessary.  This alerted me, for instance, to look another example (s) of this assumed diacritical bar-mark.

Notice, then, in the eleventh line of the frontispiece plaintext is the word stregth.  Once again, although it appears unnecessary to have omitted the n, and even though it is obviously meant to read strength, the question is:   Is the misspelling a typographical error?  If it was, then it seems the diacritical mark of a “bar” above  the e, saying to the reader,  “Place an n after the e so as to complete the intended spelling of the word” would be absent in the frontispiece spelling of “stregth”.

However, this is not the case.  The word stregth has a diacritical mark over the e, in the same manner that there is the same diacritical mark over thea in traslate (translate).  For me, this is a strong indicator of the “purposeful” placement of both diacrtical bar-marks, strongly suggesting the presence of “intelligent design” on the part of the young Edward de Vere, the printer of the frontispiece, or someone else (Arthur Golding, for example), for cryptographic reasons.

Note also, that if a straight ruler is placed over the frontispiece, the two letters, the a in “traslate” and the e in stregth directly line up.  Furthermore, both words in question are the last in their respective sentence syntax placement.

   What is supportive of all the above, with it’s appearance of being a crafted design, is that the number of lines in the 1560 frontispiece is 17.  At the time of the frontispiece publication, Edward de Vere was unquestionably the Seventeenth Earl of Oxford.  He was also in the 17th year of his life.  Is this coincidence, or is it the result of deliberate and intelligent design?

The Fable of Ovid, 1560 Frontispiece

Fig. 2        

The Fable of Ovid, Array 32, VEER

Fig. 3    

The Fable of Ovid, VEER, 1560 frontispiece  

Fig. 4                                          (Feburary 17, 2013)

Having said that, the encryptions, valid or not, have the following features:

   *First of all ,the letter-strings in the three 1560 frontispieces of The Fable of O indicate equidistant letter sequencing was used by Edward de Vere (or someone deliberately entering his name in the ciphertext) as early as 1560.  Said another way, codes are being used, foretelling what has been suspected and found in future writings, both by de Vere, those who correspond directly with him for reasons of personal communication (family matters, and the like), and/or for Crown business, including espionage.

   *Second of all, arrays 45 and 32 show two variant spellings of the House of Vere surname:  “Vere” and “Veer”.  John de Veer, 16th Earl of Oxford, and Edward’s father, consistently spelled his surname with two consecutive “ee”s.  His second will of December 21, 1552 begins:  “In the Name of god Amen. This is the laste wille and Testament of me Iohn de Veer Erle of Oxford”. Further on he refers to his three brothers:   “ my Brodern Awbry Veer Rob{er}t Veer & Geffray Veer”.  It is unlikely John would misspell, not only his own surname, but the family name of his three brothers as well.  Of course, the spelling can be attributed to scribe error, but this is unlikely.  The point is, that at the age of 10, and before the death of his father, Edward de Vere would have spelled his last name (in the main) the way his father did.

   *And third of all, John’s rushed and suspected third and final will, drawn up (at least cited as such in the document) and signed by him on July 28, 1562, a mere two weeks or so before his unexpected and mysterious death in August, 1562,  again refers to his brother, Aubrey Veer, and mentions Aubrey’s two sons as:  Hugh Veer and John Veer; and to John Veer’s daughter as Anne Veer.  He later refers to his brother Robert as Robert Veere.

   *As wills are legal documents, the surname spelling of “Veer” is more likely accurate than it is the result of consistent misspelling over the years between the 1552 and 1562 wills.

   *Returning again to the 1560 Fable of Ovid frontispiece, the Roman numeral “MDLX” can be looked at as a fusion of 1550, the year of Edward de Vere’s birth (in Roman numerals, “MDL”) and the date of the frontispiece, 1560 (“MDLX”).

   *On a final note, the frontispiece makes note of how “God resysteth the proud”.  This plaintext phrase touches and/or includes “VERE” in the vertical, saying, as much, “Vere, the proud”.  Although in my estimation he should be proud of his translation and encryption skills, this has (for me at least) a touch of irony and humour.  This from a ten-year-old who a future writer (Francis Meres) will refer to as the best amongst us for comedy.     (Feb. 18, 2013)

Oxford' Age Chart, OVID, HAMLET, JPEG

Dedication, First 4 Bks., Leicester, R.VERE, JPEG, 1564

Fig. 6  

Dedication, 1564, VERE CODE, JPEG, 1564

Fig. 7 

Dedication, AMLETH, my RIMES, 1st. 4 Bks., JPEG, 1564

Fig. 8

OVID, Title:Frontispiece, VERE worke translated, JPEG, 1565

Fig. 9

Ovid, 1567, Book 15, last 12 lines, Array 68  JPEG

Fig. 10

Ovid, Book 15, last 12 lines, VERE, Array 51 JPEG

Fig. 11

Ovid, last 20 lines, 1567, VERE Vow, Array 68, JPEG

Fig. 12  

Da Vinci 1, JPEG

                                          Fig. 13:  Ferris©2009, “Da Vinci, Sonnet 72″

Sonnet 72, Array 46, JPEG

Fig. 14 

   Notice that in Column 13, Row 4, the horizontal plaintext word “devise” crosses “VERE”.  “Devise” is used in dozens of arrays in Shakespeare plaintexts in similar contexts, such as “invention” and “compounds strange”, and is equivalent to “code (s)”.

   But the question still remains:  “Why, in every work attributed to William Shakespeare, can be found dozens if not hundreds of letter-strings and clusters referring unambiguously and directly to Edward de Vere, 17th Earl of Oxford; and not to himself or to Bacon, Sackville, Christopher Marlowe, or a host of other contenders for the true authorship of the Shakespeare canon?  And referring not just to the truth that “Vere” is the subject in so many letter-string encryptions, but to the “nigard (niggard)” truth.  The origin of the word “niggard” is uncertain, and has several possible connotations.  One, however, is that “niggard” comes from the Germanic 14th century (ca.) “genau”,  “precise, exact”.  In so many words, then, the sonnet sentence use of “nigard” is saying that the “nigard truth” is the precise, the exact, the (as we would say in this day and age) ‘bare bones, and literal truth’.  That you can ‘take it to the bank’ truth.       (February 19, 2013)

For the year 1567, click HERE.




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