Did Shakespeare write his plays? – Natalya St. Clair and Aaron Williams


“Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and others have greatness thrust
upon them”, quoth William Shakespeare. Or did he? Some people question whether Shakespeare
really wrote the works that bear his name, or whether he even existed at all. They speculate that Shakespeare
was a pseudonym for another writer, or a group of writers. Proposed candidates
for the real Shakespeare include other famous playwrights,
politicians and even some prominent women. Could it be true that the greatest writer
in the English language was as fictional as his plays? Most Shakespeare scholars
dismiss these theories based on historical
and biographical evidence. But there is another way to test
whether Shakespeare’s famous lines were actually written by someone else. Linguistics, the study of language, can tell us a great deal about the way
we speak and write by examining syntax, grammar,
semantics and vocabulary. And in the late 1800s, a Polish philosopher
named Wincenty Lutosławski formalized a method known as stylometry, applying this knowledge to investigate
questions of literary authorship. So how does stylometry work? The idea is that each writer’s style
has certain characteristics that remain fairly uniform
among individual works. Examples of characteristics include
average sentence length, the arrangement of words, and even the number of occurrences
of a particular word. Let’s look at use of the word thee
and visualize it as a dimension, or axis. Each of Shakespeare’s works
can be placed on that axis, like a data point, based on the number
of occurrences of that word. In statistics, the tightness
of these points gives us what is known as the variance,
an expected range for our data. But, this is only a single characteristic
in a very high-dimensional space. With a clustering tool
called Principal Component Analysis, we can reduce the multidimensional space
into simple principal components that collectively measure the variance
in Shakespeare’s works. We can then test the works
of our candidates against those principal components. For example, if enough works of Francis Bacon
fall within the Shakespearean variance, that would be pretty strong evidence that Francis Bacon and Shakespeare
are actually the same person. What did the results show? Well, the stylometrists who carried
this out have concluded that Shakespeare is none other
than Shakespeare. The Bard is the Bard. The pretender’s works just don’t match up
with Shakespeare’s signature style. However, our intrepid
statisticians did find some compelling evidence
of collaborations. For instance, one recent study concluded that Shakespeare worked with playwright
Christopher Marlowe on “Henry VI,” parts one and two. Shakespeare’s identity is only one of
the many problems stylometry can resolve. It can help us determine
when a work was written, whether an ancient text is a forgery, whether a student has committed plagiarism, or if that email you just received
is of a high priority or spam. And does the timeless poetry
of Shakespeare’s lines just boil down to numbers and statistics? Not quite. Stylometric analysis may reveal what makes
Shakespeare’s works structurally distinct, but it cannot capture the beauty of
the sentiments and emotions they express, or why they affect us the way they do. At least, not yet.

100 thoughts on “Did Shakespeare write his plays? – Natalya St. Clair and Aaron Williams

  1. Shakespeare was an illiterate countryman. He could barley write his own name. "Others have greatness thrust upon them".

  2. Lol that still doesn’t prove that they never found a single hand written poem by him except s bad written signature. His kids don’t know how to read nor wrote or that he never has a poem dedicated to his son’s death

  3. that expailn everything about shaksphere qusetion i elizabeth the 1st of england helping out shakespere for his next work known as the henry the eigth

  4. So I guess Shakespeare is like Homer then. Doubt we will ever truly know, but to me that just makes the works more interesting.

  5. It is a shame to produce such a misleading video! It can still deceive those who do not know this topic well but not those who, like me, have been studying it for several years! In fact, the credibility of the orthodox thesis has been totally ruined by the numerous and minute works and books of the opponents !!! This video is misleading because it suggests that opponents of the orthodox thesis are still looking for the real author of these plays. In fact, the time of the search of this author is over for a long time! The most probable one is Edward de Vere. The circumstantial evidence in his favor is overwhelming. Now heterodox scholars are deepening the impact of this discovery that has resulted in a complete renewal of Shakespearian studies. That the stylometry confirms that Francis Bacon is not the author of these pieces has advanced the search for the actual author without eliminating the need for that search! Besides, the "Francis Bacon hypothesis" has long been abandoned by heterodox researchers!!! The stylometry proves only that most of the plays attributed to Shakespeare have one author (and that in some cases others have got their hands on it). It does not prove at all that this author is the "Shagspear" of Stratford-on-Avon! Please, if you argue, do it avoiding logical fallacies!

  6. how lucky do you have to be on scramble to be able to make those words

  7. This study is flawed because the writing claimed to be Shakspere was actually produced by Edward de Vere. The study fails to prove anything other than there was some limited collaboration with de Vere.

  8. 0:37 I think they mixed up Oxford and Marlow – the EARL of Oxford was a courtier and Marlowe was the other famous playwright.

  9. Ah, the Shakespeare quote in the beginning of the video clearly inspired Glinda's sentence "Are people born Wicked? Or do they have Wickedness thrust upon them?" from the musical Wicked! 😀

  10. Contrary to the introduction of this video, I don't think that anyone has ever doubted the existence of a man from Stratford upon Avon whose name was William Shakespeare, or a variant of it, such as Shaksper.

  11. Shakespeare didn't write his plays.
    end of story
    Francis Bacon was the real writer, he was working under king's cult and he couldn't use his name for his play writes so he used the name of his friend William Shakespeare.

  12. Romeo and Juliet, Hamlet , Henry V , midsummers night's sleep, Anthony and Cleopatra , Macbeth. Are from William Shakespeare

  13. Just because the linguistic results eliminate Bacon, Marlowe and Oxford doesn’t mean that William of Stratford wrote those works

  14. Anyone else just want a yes or no answer with a short sentence as to why ?

  15. This seems another case of people who had nothing better to do. Imagine a bunch of zombies hunched up over Shakespeare's works counting: 12 3……
    Instead of reading and enjoying what is written there. Pretty scary and boring.

  16. In those times they didn't have this weird notion of "copyright" which is incredibly false. All creators were part of a tradition+ a community and when they spoke, they were the voice of that community. They didn't pretend to be original- as if you could ever be original….
    Take Disney classics e.g. – Cinderella, Snow-White, Rapunzel… I wonder… Did they pay copyrights to the Grim Brothers? (Or did the Grim Brothers pay copyrights to the real anonymous creators ?)

  17. Wow! This is so misleading. It diesn’t answer the question “who was Shakespeare.”

  18. Why is there an annotation over "Sonnet 18" that also says "Sonnet 18"?

  19. The idea Shakespeare isn't Shakespeare falls apart with one other fact; plays have to be staged.

    If the author wasn't Shakespeare, they would still have to perform them in a specific location in a specific company with specific actors and understand their strengths and limitations.

  20. Very dishonest video since it dismisses obvious similarities between the personal writing style of Edward de Vere and the works published under the pseudonym Shakespeare.

  21. I wonder if people would think of some of us as imaginary if a thousand years were to pass.

  22. It's mainly just snobbery because he was working class, and of course a poor person could never have written a play. At least that's what a lot of upper class people thought.

  23. The conspiracies are nonsense. It's largely due to snobbish belief that a small town middle class boy (William in The Merry Wives of Windsor is Shakespeare's amusing autobiographical childhood cameo) couldn't write such good stuff. It would have to be some aristo. But Shakespeare was part of the best educated generation in English history until the 1870s, and I would argue it's precisely because of his middle class origin that he has empathy with people of all classes and backgrounds that an Oxford or a Bacon would never have had. Bill Bryson's book on him deals with this square on and very clearly concludes that Shakespeare was Shakespeare too after a coherent critical discussion of all these other theories. If you want to stick to your snobbish beliefs that it must have been someone else, bear in mind that your echo chamber has been formed by the kind of people that don't like Muggles 🙂

  24. hmmm What about purposely changing your style in order to conceal your true identity? What about the fact that Shakespear had no college education and could barely sign his name? What about the fact that the writer knew things that would be quite impossible for a common peron to know. Sometimes I feel like we choose to stick to what was fed to us because it could cause historical chaos and discredit academia. And nobody wants that, right? There is more evidence to support the idea that he didn't write it than to support that he actually did. Not a lot is known about him. Even his portrait is not him. That is not to say a certain Shakespear existed, but he certainly did not write his plays.

  25. Stylometics also concluded that Midsummer Night's Dream was primarily written by another writer (obvious nonsense). The evidence is far from conclusive. And to what actually written by the man from Stratford (his doggerel epitaph?) is used as a baseline? The reasoning here is faulty from the get-go. The Stratford man fits the literary profile in no point whatever. Look at the actual evidence for a change.

  26. So why did people believe he didnt write his works in the first place? was is good old classism because he wasnt educated at the top of society?

  27. This sounds more like numerology and we all know what a bunch a of nonsense that is.

  28. good video but you forget Michelangelo Florio his mother Surname crollalanza=Shakespeare Florio was an erudit umanist that leave italy for religion reason (was calvinist) he wrote very similar to Shakespeare many years before probably this reamains e mystere but is interesting know much more about him (sorry for my english) and remenber 'conosci te stesso' e niente di troppo ciao

  29. The Tempest. It is not in Bermuda or in a utopian place. The island is England. Sycorax is Elisabeth. Caliban are the Protestants. Prospero is Felipe II of Spain…
    This is the literary testament of Shakespeare 403 years later. That I have deducted in one night. I do not know why the Shakespearean experts speak of the island as an imaginary place and another hypothesis. The island of The Tempest, Is England. The tests are here. Shakespeare wanted, and prayed, for Spain to invade England, and Catholics to be liberated. Although he feels very English. Nobody wants to imagine that Shakespere, the most universal English, wanted Spain to invade England, because England builds its national identity remembering the year 1588. But this is the truth:
    Precisely because Shakespeare secretly practiced Catholicism, and his family had been recused and impoverished, he wrote the Tempest to vent, because of the Protestant intolerance against Catholics. It was the last play, and he risked reprisals and left the theater. The tempest that disperses the ships (not the English action, because later there were more invincible navies, 2nd and 3rd, of 1596 and 1597, dispersed by storms). But the tempest could also bring an army to rescue the Catholics of the island. Who lives on the island of Shakespare's Tempest? They had lived Sycorax before. Look for Sycorax in Wikipedia, for example: "An especially odd and early guess at a meaning by one critic was sic or rex, a Latin homophone alluding to Queen Elizabeth's pride". Elisabeth Sycorax only appears in the named text. She is described as a ruthless witch who has already died. Now there is Caliban, which is a cannibal transformation. Caliban is the son of Elisabeth (who brought Protestantism again after the death of Maria Tudor). Protestant cannibals are "eating" Catholics. Shakespeare is very cruel to Caliban, who is a deformed being, "like Protestantism then?" But who lives abandoned on that desert island of the Tempest? (It can be deserted if they kill us all, thinks Shakespeare). Live there Prospero and Miranda (María Tudor), "daugther" of Prospero, Duke of Milan (Felipe II of Spain was Duke of Milan, and before King of England, and the great protector of Catholicism in Europe). Who commanded the invincible army of 1588? Alonso Pérez de Guzmán (who was captain general of Lombardía , Milan). Who commanded the navy in the text of Shakespeare? a man named Alonso, king of Naples. Always Italy, where the Pope is, and always Spanish territories in Italy. Who is the greatest traitor in Spain in history? Antonio Pérez, who betrayed Felipe II, and traveled to England to ally with Elisabeth. Shakespeare met Antonio Pérez. Shakespare makes a caricature of Antonio Pérez in Love's Labour Lost, called him Don Adriano de Armado. Who is the greatest traitor in the Tempest? Antonio, who has stolen Prospero (Felipe II) the title of Duke of Milan, has usurped the name of Spain.
    The daughter of Alonso (head of the real and fictitious army) is called Claribel. How could Spain invade England? Taking troops from the Netherlands, to embark them in the army. Who was the Spanish sovereign of the Spanish Netherlands, daughter of Philip II, king who sent the army? Isabel Clara Eugenia. Isabel Clara Eugenia was proposed to be queen of France. The King of France rejected the proposal, but in return he made France Catholic. "Paris is worth a Mass". Shakespeare was thinking that this was a solution for England, a wedding like that of Philip and Mary, an invasion, or the solution that there was in France, to bring Catholicism to England. In addition, Claribel comes from Tunisia, where the uncle of Isabel Clara Eugenia, had just left the Moors expelled from Spain by infidels. Sycorax (Elisabeth) fue expulsada de Argel, por hacer brujería, era menos cristiana que los argelinos. Who is the servant of Prospero and Felipe II: Ariel, the wind, who has a childish spirit, and does not always obey Prospero. But Prospero reminds him of Ariel, that he rescued him from Sycorax. When? When Philip II of Spain was king of England he brought Catholicism. So in The Tempest, Ariel brings the ships to England. Shakespare could not go further without discovering his intention. The text of the Tempest is full of much more subtle allusions, almost on each page, showing the suffering and relief of Shakespare. The text talks about the barrels of wine from Jerez (Spain) that the fleet brings to fill the whole island, and that are hidden in a cave (wine for Catholic Masses, which were hidden in the 17th century? )He wanted what he thought was best for England.
    What is the last sentence of the Tempest, the farewell phrase of Shakespeare from the theaters? A Catholic phrase.

  30. Interesting, I'd like to know what journal , note , or letter of the Stratford man they used seeing how none exist. Hmm 🤔

  31. Oh, good question… To my mind, Shakespeare wrote his plays himself because he was very clever even though he was uneducated (only 7 classes). He knew a lot of languages and worked a lot at the theatre. He did everything himself! It's my point of view! You can agree and disagree , it's your choice!

  32. I believe that people who argue that Shakespeare didn’t write his plays, don’t want to look at that time and understand what the life of the actors was like. Shakespeare was 20-year-old and he had to do everything on the theater – build scenery, sell tickets, play several roles and of course, write plays. He was a godsend for the theater. Actually, he didn’t believe in himself and that’s why he didn’t publish his works.

  33. Thanks for the video, it was very interesting to watch 😌I believe that Shakespeare was a very talented person. Many sources say that he was a very educated, well-read and creative person and I think the same. I am sure that he himself wrote his works! Proving that this is not his work is difficult, so why not just enjoy his work? By the way, even though most of the works are tragic, I like Othello! And you?😉

  34. Thanks for posting it! I think that there was a person, who has written all poems. As i know , he was well educated and was able to understand and to remember all things for the first time. That's why a such good education mean that it's enough only one person to write such beautiful and big stories.

  35. I believe that William Shakespeare wrote his works by himself, because in my opinion he is the greatest writer. Of course there are several assumptions in people that he did not write himself, but I do not think so. He is a very educated person, and I do not understand why people think that someone wrote for him.

  36. We know a lot of plays which were written by William Shakespeare. But are all of them was written by him? It is a very controversial question. As for me, William Shakespeare wrote plays by himself. He might have some people who helped him, gave some ideas, but I am definitely sure that he is an author of all of them!

  37. All my life I believed that Shakespeare wrote his plays be himself. But some facts made me doubt about that. Now I totally agree with that people who think that he could not write such plays because he could know nothing about lifestyle of rich people. So, may be he wrote his works by himself, but only with help of somebody.

  38. I consider that it Shakespeare didn’t write his plays.I think that some nobleman wrote plays and Shakespeare was like a trademark,because judging by the Shakespeare’s works, he visited many countries, traveled all over Italy, knew all the details of the area, which is difficult to describe, never seeing them. Meanwhile, according to Shakespeare’s biography he never left England.

  39. It's a really very interesting question! But people's opinion on this topic is quiet different. Some people say that he was a real person, but other say that it was a group of people, and "Shakespeare" was their nickname. Unfortunately, the researchers of creativity of the poet did not give a clear answer.
    And we can just imagine who actually wrote the poems

  40. I believe that Shakespeare was the author of his works. He was recognized by other actors and playwrights and worked with them for about 20 years. They spoke of him as a real dramatist and admired him. Some criticized his approach to drama, but still considered him one of the best writers of the time.

  41. It's a really very interesting topic! The main and most interesting question is: Was he the only one who wrote the plays or it was a group of authors with the name Shake-Speares?

  42. William Shakespeare don't wrote but it was edward de vere the royal family

  43. what an absolute waste of time. platitudes and repetition of long refuted falsehoods. all topped with pseudoscience.

  44. Romeo, Romeo, | where art thou | Romeo?
    a horse, a horse,|my kingdom for | a horse!

    Can be broken down into
    1, 1, 2, 1, EXCLAM.

    Romeo/a horse = 1,
    My kingdom for/where art thou =2,
    EXCLAM = ?/!

    So what can we get from this? SHAKESPEARE IS FORKIN' SHAKESPEARE, EVERYONE.

  45. Historical and biographical evidence? You mean historical and biographical surmising…

  46. Saint Albans is mentioned 15 times in Shakespear's play's. Do you know how many times Stratford-upon-Avon
    is mentioned? None.

  47. English Subject is now Mixed with Mathemarical Inquiry 😂🤣

  48. Seeing as "Ownership is 9/10 of the law", does it really matter? He got the credit and fame and no matter how many times this question is brought up, proving otherwise will be pretty well impossible.

  49. Shakespeare's plays were written by a sentient non-binary pansexual multiracial avocado.

  50. I believe Shakespeare's was 1 person n he wrote everythin himself he mightve got ideas from others

  51. I WISH SHAKESPEARE’S PLAYS WERE NEVER RECOVERED BECAUSE IM SO CONFUSED AND IM FAILING ENGLISH CLASS BECAUSE OF HIM!!!!!

  52. ….WWed now…
    $$chequekk€-
    $$p(H)@ER🚨⛽$$…??¿!
    😂

  53. Problem, the man himself was barely educated, had no personal knowledge of Court, had never been to Italy, (so all the stuff written about that part of the world were completely out of his reach). Most likely it was the Earl of Oxford, who could not publicly reveal his authorship, because that sort of activity was frowned upon for those in the aristocracy. There's even some compelling evidence that the author may have been Queen Elizabeth herself. Needless to say, this is a far more complex question than the open & shut case presented by this animation. If you research it, at the very least, you'll become more familiar with the art, theatre, language, and history of the Elizabethan Era, and that's not a bad result – no matter what conclusions you may ultimately draw about the authorship.

  54. the narrative shifted from literature to statistics, im freaking astounded

  55. My anscestor Thomas Triplett descended from Dante Lamberti the architect of Exeter Cathedral wrote Romeo and Juliet. He also wrote Mid Summer Nights dream- stole it from a Gypsy. Thomas was Queen Elizabeths Greek Tutor. Francis Bacon had a feud with him over stealing honey from his skullery.

  56. Thankfully today with the internet it is easy to trace who created what works of art. 500 years from now people will be able to know for sure that the TRUE and HONEST creator of Sonichu was Jimmy Hill.

  57. Even if Shakespeare did not write the plays he got the credit. If the most brilliant writer of the Shakespeare's era wrote the plays very few remember him. Mention Shakespeare and most people will know who you are talking about.

  58. Shakespeare is not real, it was just a name so as to hide. Moreover, he came to England from the Middle East, actually, he was probably a Muslim. That is not the only odd thing in this reality, his name originated from "Sheikh Pir" that's meaning is "The Old Sheikh". I know it is surprising; however, it is accurate as D. Trump is the president of the USA. There is no such a writer as Shakespeare. Dear English readers your language does not have a huge literature. If it has, it could not be the world language. English is equal to the overgrown clan languages.

  59. I'm confused…all this seems to prove is that Shakespeare wasn't one of the people whose writings they compared. Couldn't it be some other person or people whose writings aren't known?

  60. The master did live and suffered. He also had an unfaithful shrewd wife and a licentious daughter as well. He abandoned them.

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