Quote family: The works Shakespeare were not written by Shakspeare but by another man of the same name

ADSGarson O'Toole adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM
Tue Aug 19 12:43:13 UTC 2014

An entry on this topic is now available on the QI website. The
acknowledgement mentions Stephen Goranson, JL, and other discussion

The Plays of Shakespeare Were Not Written by Shakespeare but by
Another Man of the Same Name

Feedback welcome. Thanks,

On Sun, Aug 17, 2014 at 11:26 AM, Stephen Goranson <goranson at duke.edu> wrote:
> ---------------------- Information from the mail header -----------------------
> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       Stephen Goranson <goranson at DUKE.EDU>
> Subject:      Re: Quote family: The works Shakespeare were not written by
>               Shakspeare but by another man of the same name
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> Interesting! Here's an apparent use in 1860:=0A=
> "This [argument about a planet discovery] rivals the new discovery about Sh=
> akespeare--that the well know plays and poems were not by William Shakespea=
> re, but by another person of the same name!"=0A=
> The Spectator, January 14, 1860 p. 38 col. 1 GoogleB=0A=
> http://books.google.com/books?id=3DQi8_AQAAIAAJ&pg=3DPA38&dq=3D%22but+by+an=
> other+*+of+the+same+name%22&hl=3Den&sa=3DX&ei=3DscfwU-CGLciI8gH3xoGYDA&ved=
> =3D0CCIQuwUwATgK#v=3Donepage&q=3D%22but%20by%20another%20*%20of%20the%20sam=
> e%20name%22&f=3Dfalse=0A=
> =0A=
> Stephen Goranson=0A=
> http://people.duke.edu/~goranson/=0A=
> =0A=
> ________________=0A=
> =0A=
> =0A=
> Garson:=0A=
> =0A=
> Jonathan Lighter wrote:=0A=
>> "Shakespeare" means many things besides "wanker." That's why=0A=
>> his works are acclaimed. (Or, as seems likely, works written by=0A=
>> someone else of the same name.)=0A=
> =0A=
> JL alludes to an old joke that has been applied to Homer and=0A=
> Shakespeare. Here are two exemplars:=0A=
> =0A=
> 1) The Homeric Poems were not written by Homer, but by another person=0A=
> of the same name.=0A=
> =0A=
> 2) The plays of Shakespeare were not written by Shakspeare but by=0A=
> another man of the same name.=0A=
> =0A=
> I was asked to explore the history of this family of quips which has=0A=
> been connected to Mark Twain, G. K. Chesterton, Lewis Carroll, Israel=0A=
> Zangwill, Jerome K. Jerome, Aldous Huxley and others.=0A=
> =0A=
> Here are the earliest citations I've found at this point.=0A=
> =0A=

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