RICHARD BARNFIELD, poet: A Pen Name for Edward de Vere

Was Richard Barnfield yet another pen name for Edward de Vere?

Barnfield’s Verse-Epistle-Dedicatory (1598, reprinted in 1605) to The Encomium of Lady Pecunia:  

Richard Barnfield, Ded., Lady Pecunia, VERE IS BARNFIELDFig. 1:  From The Full Text of the Complete Poems of Richard Barnfield

VERE IS BARNFIELD, Ded., 1598:1605Fig. 2:  Is this The Confession of 1598/1605?

The Encomion of Lady Pecunia, 1598, Frtpcs.

Fig. 3

Barnfield, Encomion, Lady Pecunia, Frontispiece, 1598Fig. 4

Barnfield, Sonnet 13 and ExpositoryFig. 5

Note:  The sense of fade (and the spelling of it as well), meaning “to go away, to vanish” is used only 7 times in the entire Shakespeare canon.  It occurs 7 times in 6 plaintexts:  4 uses in the plays and 3 in the Sonnets (1 time in Sonnet 18, and 2 times in Sonnet 54).   However, the spelling of the sense of the meaning of fade is only spelled VADE 1 time (Sonnet 54, couplet) in the entire canon.

Richard Barnfield greatly admired Spenser.  As shown above, VADE is used by Spenser in The Faerie Queene, by Richard Barnfield in his Sonnet 13,  and by William Shakespeare in Sonnet 54.

Of interest is:  the use of fade/vade 7 times in 6 plaintexts provides a serendipitous mathematical ‘coincidence’ in that the sum of 76 (7 uses in 6 plaintexts) is 13.  “My name’s DEVERE is found in Array 14 of Sonnet 76.  And, as shown above, the word VADE in the plural is in Array 13 of Richard Barnfield’s Sonnet 13.  “Fadeis used three times in the plays.  The single use ofVADE, reflected in Barnfield, and connected to the “echoing” of VERE (i.e., VEREV)” is in Array 111.  The sum of 111 = 3.  

[ The source for the word frequency of fade in Shakespeare was noted by the OpenSource Shakespeare website.  The spell checking of each discrete use was done with the search function on the University of Chicago Library, published by the Oxford Text Archive. ]

 Of further note is the word Eccho, which reflects the young Edward de Vere’s echo verses, published under his own name.  Array 111 (Fig. 5) above clearly shows VEREV as a visual echo.

Edward de Vere and Spenser Collaboration:

Barnfield, Remembrance, 1598, VERE PEN, E. VERE'S PENFig. 6:  Printed by John Jaggard, 1598

   One reading of Array 45 is to include the “S” before “PEN”.  Doing so provides the fusion of the “pens” of both “E. (Edward or Earl) Vere” and Spenser as collaborators.  Another is the possibility that de Vere wrote the above plaintext, and provides this emphasis with the vertical letter-string “VERE”.  Both readings give a strong sense of deliberate placement, as a signature on the ‘design’, much in the same way Modigliani or Manet signed their paintings, as well as for those in the know to identify the creators of the work.  This, of course, includes Richard Barnfield’s input as well.

Is this the T.T.” (Thomas Thorpe) of the 1609 publication of the SONNETS?

Barnfield, T.T., in Commendation, VERE WEEDFig. 7

   VERE WEED (“pen”, i.e., a “noted weed”, Sonnet 76).  Note below in the plaintext of Sonnet 76 (Fig. 8) that “noted weed” is in Line 6.  Line 6 has 7 words.  67 and 76 are echoes of each other.  It is probable this commendation was either written by Edward de Vere as Sonnet 76 (or the Sonnets in general) was likely written (it is assumed) in the years 1592 – 1595; or, the T.T. of the 1609 Sonnets dedication wrote it.  T.T. would have been in a position to have been “in-the-know” about the true authorship of the Sonnets (and the plays, as well).

   Also note the letter-string (and cluster) is in Array 76.

Sonnet 76, %22in a noted weed%22Fig. 8

   The numerical similarities (i.e., the number and word play) when seen as a deliberate design (which, after all, is the substance of codes and ciphers, so as to provide validity) is remarkable:  (1) a possible coincidence in that the 1876 publication ends with the numbers 76“; (2) the Shakespeare sonnet with the letter-string, “my name’s de Vere” is in Sonnet 76; (3) T.T. (if not standing for Thomas Thorpe, then someone else is being referred to in the commendation published by Grosart) and the 1609 Sonnets dedication appear to be connected, and deliberately so, as being either or both a signature of authorship and reference, one to the other; (4) the 76 and 67 numbers are echoes of each other, reminding us of the youthfull “echo” verses of Edward de Vere; (5) the letter-string and  cluster are in Array 76.  A perfect reference, in my mind, to Sonnet 76; (6)  both the commendation and Sonnet 76 were likely composed during the same period of time.


Sonnet 1:  Barnfield, Sonnet 1, PlaintextFig. 9

Richard Barnfield, Sonnet 1Fig. 10

Sonnet 6:

Barnfield, Sonnet 6, Plaintext

Fig. 11  

Barnfield, Sonnet 6, E. VERE, secret, RIME Fig. 12:         “E. VERE” . . . Array 17.  

Sonnet 19:    Barnfield, Sonnet 19 plaintextFig. 13

Richard Barnfield, Sonnet 19Fig. 14

   The “my selfe” gives the letter-strings and cluster a ‘present tense’ feel, the feeling one is in the presence of the encrypter.  However, the cluster is somewhat syntactically ambiguous as the VERE, O.” gives the surname and the House name of VERE, but the square formed by the two PEN“s appears to imply that perhaps the SON of Vere (Henry Wriothesley, the future 18th Earle of Oxford) is the writer of the sonnet.  In other words, the SON” “SONNET.  “My selfe” and HYD make sense as:  “I, myselfe  (Edward de Vere), hid the sonnet within the plaintext.  I am the encrypter.”  That is, HYD in the sense of:  “hid, concealed”, encoded, encrypted”.

   A possible coincidence is that a salient feature of Array 59 is in the word SONNET.  A sonnet has 14 lines, and 59 = 14.  Perhaps torturing this fact somewhat is this:  5914 = 19.  The subject at hand, of course, is Sonnet 19.  For us to fully believe this is deliberate is our assumption (or, our strong belief) that Shakespeare (Edward de Vere) played with numbers and words as a linguistic calculus that pervades his work.  However this may be, the context of so many numerical combinations of letter-strings-to-array numbers throughout so much of what I am presented with in working with the codes in the Shakespeare canon favors intelligent design over coincidence.  This observation is, of course, my “degree of belief”.

Richard Barnfield, Sonnet 19, VERE, E. Veer sonnetFig. 15

Richard Barnfield, Sonnet 19, VERE'S sonnetFig. 16

   Nowhere in any of the arrays of the above plaintexts can be found letter-strings or code clusters for any claimant  in the Authorship Question, including:  Sir Francis Bacon, Christopher Marlowe or William Shakespeare of Stratford-upon-Avon.  Only for de Vere.

To His Mistresse:   Elizabeth I  (Bess/Beth)

Barnfield, To His Mistresse, plaintextFig. 17

Barnfield, To His Mistresse, I AM E. VERE, I, E.O.Fig. 18

Barnfield, To His MistresseFig. 19

Barnfield, To His Mistresse, ED DYERFig. 20:   Was Edward Dyer another Vere pen name, and/or a collaborator?

   What is fascinating about To His Mistresse, a poem allegedly written by and attributed to Richard Barnfield, is that, speaking strictly from the standpoint of hidden messages with plaintext passages–is the code-presence of:  E. (Edward or Earle) Vere, Bess/Beth (possibly Elizabeth I) and Ed(ward) Dyer.  It’s obviously difficult to say with certainty, but the above arrays appear to have been written by Barnfield, yet de Vere taking the credit (code-wise).  The “Ed Dyer, here” indicates the poem itself is a message perhaps written to Vere by Edward Dyer.  The “here” a sort of signature indicating he is the author of the that part of the encryption.

   The mention of de Vere and Bess in context of the personal life of Edward de Vere is understandable, but why the mention of Dyer?  To respond to this, perhaps mention of a poem some attribute to Edward Dyer and some to Edward de Vere.  I’m talking, of course, about In Praise of a Contented Minde, a poem more recognizable as My Mynde to Me a Kingdome Is:

Plaintext, My Kingdome IsFig. 21

Edward Dyer, My Mynde to Me a Kingdome Is, E.O. VERE, 2 equilateral trianglesFig. 22

   Although not readily visually apparent, the design formed with the letters above the “E.O.” are equilateral triangles.  We have seen in the discussion of Array 30 (Henry IV, (Quarto I, 1598) as it applies to number and word play, applying the formula used to calculate the area of an equilateral triangle when S (side) = 4, we arrive at the resulting calculation:

Covell Epistle

A = 1.73/4 (16)  =  (.4325) (16)  =    6.92.

Relevant to this discussion and de Vere’s constant word and number play in his writing is:

                                                     Σ 6.92  =  17.

Further note:Dyer, Kingdome, NE v E.R.Fig. 23

   Selecting the identical cluster in Array 36 (Fig. 22) and eliminating the font size increase and color emphasis, we can more easily focus on the two equilateral triangles.  Beginning with the first triangle on the left, between the D in HYD and the V in “VERE, are the letters NE; and between the V in VERE and the B in BETH are the letters ER.  NE (with an acute accent over the E is the French word for born (NE´), and the letters ER are the initials for “Elizabeth Rex”, and are next to the upward letter-string, “BETH”.  Making sense of the letters within the cluster, then, a possible reading is:  “Loe! (Behold! (Look!)”  VERE born of E.R.”

   Although other syntax arrangements can be made, one such arrangement of the entire array cluster is:

   “Loe! (Behold) Vere, born to Elizabeth Rex, is her heir, and was hid/concealed as Edward (Earle) in the House of Vere.”    

   The number 17 plays a prominent unifying role in the cluster, further unifying Elizabeth and Oxford:  (1) Edward de Vere is clearly identified in Array 36, and was the 17th Earle of Oxford; (2) the letter-string, BETH, reinforced by the letters ER strongly suggest that Beth, E.R. refers to Elizabeth I; (3)  the equilateral triangles reflect the number 17 in their ‘area’ calculations; (4) Elizabeth was allegedly 17 years old when she gave birth to Edward (assuming the accuracy of Prince Tudor Theory); (5)  since she gave birth to Edward in 1550 (again, an assumption made by many), this made her 17 years older than Edward; (6) the name “Dyer” appears to connect to Edward multiple times in dozens of plaintexts in the canon (and was a colleague of his in real life), and his name is fused with DEVERE in Sonnet 76.  Edward Dyer was born in 1543, and was therefore about 17 years younger than Elizabeth.  It is a remarkable that the birth dates of these  two men and the number 17  fall on either side of Elizabeth, chronologically.

   Arguably, the most remarkable aspect of the above is that the similarities between or amongst all three (Edward de Vere, Edward Dyer and Elizabeth I) can be made, whereas this cannot be said so about other contenders in the Authorship Question.



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