Many People Believe William Shakespeare Didn't Write His Own Plays

William Shakespeare was born in 1564 in Stratford-upon-Avon, United Kingdom—and many claim this is all we really know about him. Though it is widely accepted that William Shakespeare existed, it's a popular conspiracy theory that he wasn't the one who wrote all the "Shakespeare" plays, poems, and sonnets we studied in high school. Where does this doubt come from? And if it wasn't William Shakespeare who authored those works, then who did?

The story goes that in the 1770s, English clergyman and scholar James Wilmot set out to learn more about his two favorite authors, William Shakespeare and Francis Bacon, following his retirement. Wilmot spent years looking for the expansive library that he assumed Shakespeare owned, given the amount of classical references in his work and his vocabulary. He never found it. Years later, Wilmot concluded that Bacon was the author of Shakespeare's works. Bacon was learned, and had the resources and time to write Shakespeare's 37 plays, 154 sonnets, and five poems. Many other scholars agreed that it's unlikely Shakespeare penned these works. Christopher Marlowe and Edward de Vere the 17th Earl of Oxford have also been suggested as the true author of Shakespeare's work. Hear more evidence to support, as well as debunk, this theory in the videos below.

Did Shakespeare Really Write His Plays?

Many scholars say no.

Written by Curiosity Staff October 13, 2016

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