Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Lewis Theobald (not Junior)

As many know, Lovecraft adopted the moniker of Lewis Theobald, Jr. from time to time. It amused him.

The real Lewis Theobald, as HPL knew, was a Shakespearian scholar (wikipedia article). Now he's in the news. (The NPR link attached to blog title).

In summary, Theobald was a minor, a poor writer, but attacked Pope in public often. He became a star at editing - and thus why HPL took on his name. One susopects that Lovecraft thought he was a rather weak poet, a so-so writer, but a stellar editor. If so, he was correct in his own viewpoint - at least until he came into his own as a weird fantasy writer.

Scholar Says 'Lost' Shakespeare Play Is No Hoax
March 18, 2010

In 1727, Lewis Theobald staged a performance of Double Falsehood, a play he claimed was a "lost" work by William Shakespeare. At the time — more than 100 years after Shakespeare's death — critics dismissed the play as a fake, and it was quickly forgotten.

It was forgotten, that is, until this week — when Shakespeare publisher Arden Shakespeare once again put the play back into print. The publisher did so based on the evidence and research of literature professor Brean Hammond of the University of Nottingham in England.

The play is a story of love and betrayal, a dark comedy in which one man wants to steal his best friend's fiancee. Its alternate title is The Distrest Lovers.

Hammond told NPR's Renee Montagne that he has linked the play to another that Shakespeare helped to write around 1613. "Shakespeare is known to have collaborated with John Fletcher in writing a play called The History of Cardenio, or some variant of that title," he said.

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