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acclamation to salute him king whereupon, finding the cry weak and poor he put it off thus, in a kind of jest.” – Advancement of Learning (1603-5).
Brutlihen the people red, thus; and
Casca. Why, there was a crown
offered him ; and being offered
then the people fell a shouting. Brutus. What was the second
noise for ? Casca. Why, for that too. Cassius. They shouted thrice;
what was the last cry for ? Casca. Why, for that too. Brutus. Was the crown offered
him thrice ?
put it by thrice, every time
crown? Casca. Why, Antony. Brutus. Tell us the manner of it,
tell the manner of it; it was
Julius Cæsar i. 2 (1623).
This account was undoubtedly taken, directly or indirectly, from Plutarch, where it is given as follows: –
“Cæsar, dressed in a triumphal robe, seated himself in a golden chair at the rostra, to view this ceremony (celebration of the Lupercalia). Antony ... went up and reached to Cæsar a diadem wreathed with laurel. Upon this there was a shout, but only a slight one, made by the few who were stationed there for that purpose ; but when Cæsar refused it, there was universal applause. Upon the second offer, very few, and upon the second refusal, all again, applauded. Cæsar, finding it would not take, rose up and ordered the Crown to be carried into the Capitol. Cæsar's statues were afterward found with royal diadems on their heads." - Life of Julius Cæsar.
North's English translation of Plutarch's 'Lives' was published in 1579; Bacon's ' Advancement of Learning'in 1605; Shakespeare's play of 'Julius Cæsar' in 1623. It is susceptible of easy proof, as Judge Holmes in his ' Authorship of Shakespeare' shows, that the narration in the play did not come directly from Plutarch, but either from the 'Advancement' or from the pen of the author of the 'Advancement.' Judge Holmes says:
“ The play follows the ideas of Bacon rather than those of Plutarch, and adopts the very peculiarities of Bacon's expressions, wherein they differ from North’s ‘Plutarch,' as, for instance, in these :
*Cæsar refused it.' — Plutarch.
. . . . . - Plutarch.
[Plutarch has nothing to correspond with these last expressions. The author of the play plainly followed Bacon.)
“ Again, North’s Plutarch speaks of a laurel crown having a • royal band or diadem wreathed about it, which in old time was the ancient mark or token of a king ;' in the play it is called a
crown,' or 'one of these coronets, but never a diadem, while in Bacon, it is the style and diadem of a king;' whence it would seem clear that Bacon followed Plutarch rather than the play." The Authorship of Shakespeare, page 286. In the following, the versions are substantially alike: From Shakespeare
From Bacon “Decius. The Senate bave con- “With Julius Cæsar, Decimus cluded
Brutus had obtained that interest, To give this day a crown to mighty as he set him down, in his testaCæsar ;
ment, for heir in remainder, after If you shall send them word you his nephew. And this was the will not come,
man that had power with him, to Their minds may change. Besides, draw him forth to his death. For it were a mock,
when Cæsar would have discharged Apt to be rendered, for some one the Senate, in regard of some ill to say,
presages, and especially a dream of Break up the Senate till another Calpurnia, this man lifted him time,
gently by the arm out of his chair, When Cæsar's wife shall meet with telling him he hoped he would not better dreams."
dismiss the Senate till his wife Julius Cæsar, ii. 2. had dreamt a better dream."
Essay of Friendship (1625).
It has been noticed that the name of Cæsar's wife Calpurnia, and the prænomen of Brutus, Decimus, while given correctly in Bacon's · Essay of Friendship,' are spelled respectively Calphurnia and Decius in the play, the inference being that the two compositions could not have proceeded from the same pen; in other words, that Bacon knew what Shake-speare did not know. The discrepancy is easily explainable. The forms found in the play were in Shakespeare's time in common use in England. The Essay was sent to the press two years after the publication of the play, through the hands of Bacon's chaplain and amanuensis, Rawley, who edited it for the press. We know this from the fact that he impressed upon it (as will be seen above) his own singular method of punctuation. Rawley was a Latin scholar, and would naturally have made the superficial corrections, alluded to, in the text.1
A similar mistake, Bosphorus for Bosporus, has been
1 Bacon's Essay of Fame,' a fragment, was published by Rawley in 1657, thirty years after Bacon's death. The following passage from it will also show Rawley's peculiar method of punctuation :
“Julius Cæsar, took Pompey unprovided, and laid asleep his industry, and preparations, by a Fame that he cunningly gave out; How Cæsar's own soldiers loved him not; and being wearied with the wars, and laden with the spoils of Gaul, would forsake him, as soon as he came into Italy. Livia, settled all things, for the succession, of her son Tiberius, by continually giving out, that lier husband Augustus, was upon recovery, and amendment.'
handed down to the present time, even through the scholarly pages of Gibbon.
DEFORMITY OF RICHARD III
From Bacon “ Gloucester. I, that am not “Deformed persons are com
shaped for sportive tricks, monly even with nature ; for as Nor made to court an amorous nature hath done ill by them, 80 looking-glass;
do they by nature; being for the I, that am rudely stamp'd, and most part (as the scripture saith) want love's majesty
void of natural affection; and so To strut before a wanton ambling they have their revenge of nature.” nymph;
- Essay of Deformity (1607-12). I, that am curtail'd of this fair pro- “ Deformed persons seek to portion,
rescue themselves from scorn by Cheated of feature by dissembling malice.” – De Augmentis (1622).
nature, Deform’d, unfinish'd, sent before
my time Into this breathing world, scarce
half made up, And that so lamely and unfashion
able That dogs bark at me as I halt by
them; Why, I, in this weak piping time
of peace, Have no delight to pass away the
Unless to see my shadow in the sun
a lover, To entertain these fair well-spoken
days, I am determined to prove a villain. Plots have I laid, inductions dan
gerous, By drunken prophesies, libels, and
To set my brother Clarence and
the King In deadly hate.”
Richard III., i. 1 (1597).
Richard III. is said to have been deformed, one of his shoulders being somewhat higher than the other. The defect, however, was scarcely noticeable, and yet Shake-speare, following and enlarging upon Holinshed, tells us it was so marked that dogs in the street barked at the figure as it passed. But this exaggeration had a definite purpose. The play was written to show the natural connection between deformity in body and deformity in mind, the two being in the relation, as Bacon says, of cause and effect. Accordingly we have in Richard a monster“ born before his time,” “ born with teeth,” “unfinished,” a “bottled spider,” a “foul bunchback'd toad." He is also (in strict accordance with Bacon's theory), “void of natural affection;" for he murders his wife, his brother Clarence, and his two young nephews in the Tower; and he died with his mother's curse on his soul."
In the play of Henry VI., this relationship between mind and body in the case of Richard III. is still more clearly expressed:
“ Gloucester. Since the heavens have shaped my body so, Let hell make crook'd my mind to answer it.”
3 Henry VI., v. 6.
1 "The deformity could scarcely have been very marked in one who performed such feats upon the battlefield, nor does it appear distinctly in any contemporary portrait, though there are not a few. Of these several are of the same type, and perhaps by the same artist, as those in the royal collection at Windsor and the National Portrait Gallery. They exhibit an anxiouslooking face, with features capable, no doubt, of very varied expression, but scarcely the look of transparent malice and deceit attributed to him by Poly. dore Vergil, or the warlike, hard-favored visage with which he is credited by Sir Thomas More."-Dictionary of National Biography."
The same criticism applies to Holinshed. Authorities differ even as to which shoulder was the higher.