Heraldry (and other) Observations
Within the Play "Hamlet"
and the 1623 FF of plays
West Seattle, Washington
Updated December 14, 2011
"Though this be madness, yet there is method in it." Hamlet
There has been much
'throwing about of brains' as to who wrote the Shakespeare plays and, in
particular, The Tragedy of Hamlet, Prince of Denmark.
I have often pondered
the following information on the symbolism of heraldry used in Act II,
scene ii of Hamlet and contemplated the heraldry of Bacon and the heraldry
of Shaksper. I offer this as my own observations and have otherwise seen
nothing of it.
See if you can draw
these various pieces together. Perhaps you will see other symbolism within
the text that alludes to the author's true identity.
Maybe it's much ado
Blazon and Coat of Arms:
on a bend sable, a tilting spear of the field headed argent."
SHAKSPERE, Warwick. Granted by Dethick to the father of the dramatist,
1546 [? Grant date in question.]
Contemporary translation: Gold, on a diagonal black, a tilting spear, color of the field [gold] tipped white. ['milky'].
speare's purpose is to shed blood.
Note: Hyrcanian beast
= Bengal Tiger: sable diagonals on an or fur (Black stripes on golden fur)
Blazon and Coat of Arms:
he and they may bear two several coates of arms quarterly as followeth:---
The first for Bacon, gules on a chief silver, two mullets sables. The
second for Quapladde Barrey of six pieces, gold and azure, a bend gules."
Grant made to Sir Nicholas Bacon "Feb. 22, 1568, by G. Dethick, Garter Principall King of Armes"
The Coat of Arms above left appears in the frontispiece
of Sir Francis Bacon's Instauratio Magna of 1620.
"gules on a chief argent 2 mullets pierced sable."
gules = red; chief = top; argent = white; sable = black.
| (English origins of the name "Bacon")|
Prince of Denmark
Act II, Scene ii (cont.)
O, there has been much throwing about of brains.
Do the boys carry it away?
Ay, that they do, my lord; Hercules and his load too.
It is not very strange; for my uncle is king of Denmark, and those
that would make mouths at him while my father lived, give twenty, forty,
fifty, a hundred ducats a-piece for his picture in little. 'Sblood, there
is something in this more than natural, if philosophy could find it out.
There are the players.
Gentlemen, you are welcome to Elsinore. Your hands, come: the appurtenance
of welcome is fashion and ceremony: let me comply with you in this
garb; lest my extent to the players, which I tell you must show fairly
outward, should more appear like entertainment than yours. You are welcome:
but my uncle-father and aunt-mother are deceived.
In what, my dear lord?
I am but mad north-north-west: when the wind is outherly I know a hawk
from a handsaw.
Well be with you, gentlemen!
Hark you, Guildenstern;--and you too;--at each ear a hearer: that great
baby you see there is not yet out of his swaddling clouts.
Happily he's the second time come to them; for they say an old man
is twice a child.
I will prophesy he comes to tell me of the players; mark it.—You say
right, sir: o' Monday morning; 'twas so indeed.
My lord, I have news to tell you.
My lord, I have news to tell you. When Roscius was an actor in Rome,--
The actors are come hither, my lord.
Upon my honour,--
Then came each actor on his ass,--
The best actors in the world, either for tragedy, comedy,history,
pastoral, pastoral-comical, historical-pastoral,tragical-historical, tragical-comical-historical-pastoral,
scene individable, or poem unlimited: Seneca cannot be too heavy nor Plautus
too light. For the law of writ and the liberty, these are the only men.
O Jephthah, judge of Israel, what a treasure hadst thou!
What treasure had he, my lord?
Why-- 'One fair daughter, and no more, The
which he loved passing well.'
[Aside.] Still on my daughter.
Am I not i' the right, old Jephthah?
If you call me Jephthah, my lord, I have a daughter that I love passing
Nay, that follows not.
What follows, then, my lord?
Why-- 'As by lot, God wot,' and then, you know,
'It came to pass, as most like it was--' The first row of the pious chanson
will show you more; for look where my abridgment comes.
You are welcome, masters;
welcome, all:--I am glad to see thee well.--welcome, good friends.--O,
my old friend! Thy face is valanc'd since I saw thee last; comest thou
to beard me in Denmark?--What, my young lady and mistress! By'r lady,
your ladyship is nearer to heaven than when I saw you last, by the altitude
of a chopine. Pray God, your voice, like a piece of uncurrent gold, be
not cracked within the ring.--Masters, you are all welcome. We'll e'en
to't like French falconers, fly at anything we see: we'll have a speech
straight: come, give us a taste of your quality: come, a passionate speech.
What speech, my lord?
I heard thee speak me a speech once,--but it was never acted; or if
it was, not above once; for the play, I remember, pleased not the million,
'twas caviare to the general; but it was,--as I received it, and others,
whose judgments in such matters cried in the top of mine,--an
excellent play, well digested in the scenes, set down with as much modesty
as cunning. I remember, one said there were no sallets in the lines
to make the matter savoury, nor no matter in the phrase that might indite
the author of affectation; but called it an honest method, as wholesome
as sweet, and by very much more handsome than fine.
One speech in it I chiefly loved: 'twas AEneas' tale to Dido, and thereabout
of it especially where he speaks of Priam's slaughter: if it live in your
memory, begin at this line;--let me see, let me see:--
Pyrrhus, like th' Hyrcanian
it is not so:-- it begins with Pyrrhus:--
rugged Pyrrhus,--he whose sable
Black as his purpose,did the night resemble
When he lay couched in the ominous horse,--
now this dread and black complexion smear'd
With heraldry more dismal;
head to foot
is be total gules;
With blood of fathers, mothers, daughters, sons,
Bak'd and impasted with the parching streets,
That lend a tyrannous and a damned light
To their vile murders: roasted in wrath and fire,
And thus o'ersized with coagulate gore,
With eyes like Carbuncles,
the hellish Pyrrhus
Old grandsire Priam seeks.'
[So, proceed you.] This line is not in the 1623 FF of Works.
I've inserted the "trick'd"
[adorned or painted] Bacon Coat of Arms here to show how an inversion greatly mimics the text itself. "Gules" [red] lies between "head to foot" and "horridly trick'd"
thus, the 180-degree inversion.
mullets [In heraldry: usually a 5- or 6-pointed pierced star] appear to be carbuncles which normally grow on the bottom of hulls. Also, it refers to a red, precious stone. [FB: "Of Truth".]
[The quoted speech is 12-16 lines long.]
Image from First Folio, 1623
(Right column of image)
"quoted speech" is 13 lines long in original folio.
Note that the "VV" that appears conspicouously close to "Carbuncles" in the 12th line of the speech is the only VV on the page. All the rest (more than 20 of 'em) are ordinary uppercase "W's."
In that single half-line appears: VV i C.
In Roman Numerals V+V+I+C=111. Wow! Chance, indeed.
'Fore God, my lord, well spoken, with good accent
and good discretion.
Anon he finds him,
Striking too short at Greeks: his
Rebellious to his arm, lies where it falls,
Repugnant to command: unequal match'd,
Pyrrhus at Priam drives; in rage strikes wide;
But with the whiff and wind of his fell sword
The unnerved father falls. Then senseless Ilium,
Seeming to feel this blow, with
Stoops to his base;
and with a hideous crash
Takes prisoner Pyrrhus' ear: for
lo! his sword,
Which was declining on the milky head
Of reverend Priam, seem'd
i' the air to stick
So, as a painted tyrant, Pyrrhus stood;
And, like a neutral to his will and matter,
But as we often see, against some storm,
A silence in the heavens, the rack stand still,
The bold winds speechless, and the orb below
As hush as death, anon the dreadful thunder
Doth rend the region; so, after Pyrrhus' pause,
A roused vengeance sets him new a-work;
And never did the Cyclops' hammers fall
On Mars's armour, forg'd for proof eterne,
With less remorse than Pyrrhus' bleeding sword
Now falls on Priam.--
Out, out, thou strumpet, Fortune! All you gods,
In general synod, take away her power;
Break all the spokes and fellies from her wheel,
And bowl the round nave down the hill of heaven,
As low as to the fiends!
This is too long.
It shall to the barber's, with your beard.--Pr'ythee say on.--
He's for a jig or a tale of bawdry, or he sleeps:--say on; come to Hecuba.
But who, O who, had seen the mobled queen,--
'The mobled queen'?
That's good! 'Mobled queen' is good.
Run barefoot up and down, threatening the flames
With bisson rheum; a clout upon that head
Where late the diadem stood, and for a robe,
About her lank and all o'erteemed loins,
A blanket, in the alarm of fear caught up;--
Who this had seen, with tongue in venom steep'd,
'Gainst Fortune's state would treason have pronounc'd:
But if the gods themselves did see her then,
When she saw Pyrrhus make malicious sport
In mincing with his sword her husband's limbs,
The instant burst of clamour that she made,--
Unless things mortal move them not at all,--
Would have made milch the burning eyes of heaven,
And passion in the gods.
Look, whether he has not turn'd his colour, and has tears in's eyes.--Pray
you, no more!
'Tis well. I'll have thee speak out the rest of this soon.--
Good my lord, will you see the players well bestowed? Do you hear? Let
them be well used; for they are the abstracts and brief chronicles of
the time; after your death you were better have a bad epitaph than their
ill report while you live.
My lord, I will use them according to their desert.
Odd's bodikin, man, better: use every man after his desert, and who
should scape whipping? Use them after your own honour and dignity: the
less they deserve, the more merit is in your bounty. Take them in.
Follow him, friends. we'll hear a play to-morrow.
Dost thou hear me,
old friend? Can you play 'The Murder of Gonzago'?
Ay, my lord.
We'll ha't to-morrow night. You could, for a
need, study a speech of some dozen or sixteen lines
which I would set down and insert in't? could you not?
Ay, my lord.
Very well.--Follow that lord; and look you mock him not.
--My good friends
[to Ros. and Guild.], I'll leave you till night: you are welcome to Elsinore.
Good my lord!
Ay, so, God b' wi' ye! Now I am alone. O,
what a rogue and peasant slave am I!
Is it not monstrous that this player here, But in a fiction, in a dream
Could force his soul so to his own conceit
That from her working all his visage wan'd;
Tears in his eyes, distraction in's aspect, A broken voice, and his whole
With forms to his conceit? And all for nothing!
What's Hecuba to him, or he to Hecuba, That he should weep for her? What
would he do,
Had he the motive and the cue for passion That I have? He would drown
the stage with tears
And cleave the general ear with horrid speech; Make mad the guilty, and
appal the free;
Confound the ignorant, and amaze, indeed, The very faculties of eyes and
Yet I, A dull and muddy-mettled rascal, peak, Like John-a-dreams, unpregnant
of my cause,
And can say nothing; no, not for a king Upon whose property and most dear
A damn'd defeat was made. Am I a coward? Who calls me villain? breaks
my pate across?
Plucks off my beard and blows it in my face? Tweaks me by the nose? gives
me the lie i' the throat
As deep as to the lungs? who does me this, ha?
'Swounds, I should take it: for it cannot be But I am pigeon-liver'd,
and lack gall
To make oppression bitter; or ere this I should have fatted all the region
With this slave's offal: bloody, bawdy villain! Remorseless, treacherous,
lecherous, kindless villain!
Why, what an ass am I! This is most brave, That I, the son of a dear father
Prompted to my revenge by heaven and hell, Must, like a whore, unpack
my heart with words
And fall a-cursing like a very drab,
Fie upon't! foh!--About,
my brain! I have heard That guilty creatures, sitting at a play,
Have by the very cunning of the scene Been struck so to the soul that
They have proclaim'd their malefactions; For murder, though it have no
tongue, will speak
With most miraculous organ, I'll have these players Play something like
the murder of my father
Before mine uncle: I'll observe his looks; I'll tent him to the quick:
if he but blench,
I know my course. The spirit that I have seen May be the devil: and the
devil hath power
To assume a pleasing shape; yea, and perhaps Out of my weakness and my
As he is very potent with such spirits,--
Abuses me to damn me: I'll have grounds More relative than this.--
the play's the thing Wherein I'll catch the conscience of the king
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More on Sir Francis Bacon can be found at the SirBacon.org |
Updated February 12, 2005
Recently, I have been playing around with Psalm 46, Authorized King James Version
You recall that Francis Bacon was, most likely, the final editor of the KJV project authorized by King James himself in 1604 soon after Queen Elizebeth's death and James' ascension (not Francis') to the throne...
( Re: Francis Bacon and the James 1st Bible )
And also recall the familiar -- but mysterious -- placement of "shake" and "spear" within the KJV text of Psalm 46
in the final 1611 edit.
Not only are they the 46th words up-'n-down, but there are 111 words inclusively
betwixt them, (with the special note that the word "Selah" doesn't count.)
1611 "Authorized Version"
King James Bible
Click Here for Alfred Dodd's Numerological Cypher Chart.
Francis Bacon's artful
cryptographic design? or random numerological cooincidence?
I love this game....
Francis Bacon of Tupelo Mississippi.
October 23-25, 2002
Shakespeare, First Folio (1623)
This is so remarkably simple, I’m amazed that it hasn’t been seen before.
But then maybe, that was the author’s intent.
First, verso folio, instructions are given:
(Which begs the question: is there a pattern to the comma's and the double-v's?)
| To the Reader. || To the Reader.|
|This Figure, that thou here feeft put, ||This Figure, that thou here seeist put,|
| It vvas for gentle Shakefpeare cut; || It was for gentle Shakespeare cut;|
|VVherein the Grauer had a ftrife ||Wherein the Graver had a strife|
| vvith Nature, to out-doo the life : || with Nature, to outdo the life :|
|O, could he but haue dravvne his vvit ||Oh, could he but have drawn his wit|
| As vvell in braffe, as he hath hit || As well in brass, as he hath hit|
|His face ; the Print vvould then furpaffe ||His face, the Print would then surpass|
| All,that vvas euer vvrit in braffe. || All,that was ever writ in brass.|
|But, fince he cannot, Reader, looke ||But, since he cannot, Reader, look|
| Noton his Picture, but his booke. || Not on his Picture, but his book.|
| B. I. || B. I.|
The very next words at the top of the next recto folio...
a.) Mr. VVILLIAM SHAKESPEARES
…and 14 pages later at the top of the Principal Actors list. (above)
b.) The VVorkes of VVilliam Shakespeare,
(Clearer image: Use 4x)
Note that in both cases, William Shakespeare’s name, as typeset in the first folio of 1623 used the double-“V” ligature for the letter “W” Note too, that other words in the text used a standard ‘W’ – so it was available for proper use. It seems, as if by choice -- that it wasn’t.
Further, if you examine more closely the list of Principal Actors, “VVilliam Shakespeare” is on the page twice – both with “VV”. But notice too, that there are four other “Williams” listed therein (see image at bottom) and all use a standard “W.”
Hmm-m-m. Strange 'coincidence,' indeed.
So, here we go…
"Oh look, Roman Numerals!"
Sum the Roman Numerals thus: V+V+I+L+L = 111 = Kaye Cypher for “Bacon”
Becomes (verily, all too easily)
Bacon I am Shakespeare
Now what, in the Queen’s English, is the big mystery to that?
Just another coincidence, right?
As "Shakespeare" mused, 'Modest doubt is the beacon of the wise.'
(Also, take note of the above cited page from Hamlet in the 1623 folio. Cooincidence?)
My illumined version of the same image.
(Clearer Image: Use 4x)
Here's another oddity.
Note that on Folio A3, "To the great Variety of Readers." that the Initial Cap "F" is followed by an upper-case "R". ["Hmm-m-m," he said, scratching his chin.]
Then, the first full sentance of that page reads:
"FRom the moft able,to him that can but fpell: There you are number'd."
(From the most able, to him that can but spell, There you are numbered.)
Doesn't that phrase possibly carry a bit more meaning in light of the above discovery?
And oddly enough it fits the alleged profiles of both men's literary capabilities.
(Clearer Image: Use 4x)
See Ben Ionson's Commas. Ben Ionson Bibliography
Be sure to read the two pages under "Simple Arithmatic in Elizabethan Literature" by Alfred Dodd at the Cypher Chart link.
And this one is pretty much a stretch but I thought I'd include it anyway.
FRANCIS BACON in Simple Cypher =100.
As noted in red above, there are nine double-v's and ten over-sized commas in the original copy.
(9 x 10) + 10 = 100
And last, but not least, isn't this interesting:
Bard: A covering of fat bacon to render more flavor.
2B V ¬2B = ? Francis Bacon