A Post Stratfordian Shake-speare Blog
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The Monkswell Hillbilly

The two scenes discussed in the the first post here showed certainly point to Medice alluding to William Shakespere.  There’s another scene that points quite specifically towards Shakspere. In act five, Medice tries to kill Vincentio (offstage). Poggio enters to report this event.

“Poggio. Oh, my lord, my lord Vincentio,
Is almost kill’d by my lord Medice…..

Strozza. What tale is here ? Where is this mischief done ?
Poggio. At Monkswell, my lord; I’ll guide you to him presently.”  (V, iii, 66-80)

William Shakspere lived at the corner of Silver and Monkswell street at the time this play was written. Monkswell street (later Monkwell) was not a long street. If there was  man falsely claiming to write poems and act in plays living on Monkwell street, that man is certainly the object of the allusion and satire of The Gentleman Usher.  Now the play is set in Italy, so the reference to a specific street in London is a definite alert to the reader to look for an allusion to a Londoner.  William Shakspere, Monkswell Hillbilly.  It should also be noted that the murder attempt in the plot conducted by Medice is not out of character with William Shakspere, who had been accused of putting William Wayte ‘in fear of death.’

A fourth strong connection in this allusion is the slight change in spelling of the names. At the end of the play, Medice is exposed as being a man named Mendice, which means beggar. Medice, is cognate with Medici, i.e. a leader. With a slight change of spelling, he went from a beggar to a lord. The slight change in spelling from Shakspere to Shakespeare accomplished a similar transformation for William from Stratford.

In the first two posts here, we’ve looked at four different aspects of Medice’s story, each one seems a specific allusion to William Shakspere. I think the collective result of this evidence is the certain identification of Mendice/Medice as Shakspere/Shakespeare.

October 3, 2013   No Comments