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Marlowe's Ghost: The Blacklisting of the Man Who Was Shakespeare [Hardcover]

Daryl Pinksen
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
Price: CDN$ 34.33 & FREE Shipping. Details
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Book Description

June 1 2008
On the morning of May 30, 1593, Christopher Marlowe met with three associates in the English intelligence network. Later that evening the Queen's coroner was summoned to their meeting place. A body lay on the floor. After an inquest, the dead man was taken to a nearby churchyard busy at the time receiving victims of the plague. According to the official report, England's foremost playwright was interred without fanfare or marker. Soon, plays attributed to William Shakespeare began to appear on the London stage, plays so undeniably similar to Marlowe's that noted scholars have since declared that Shakespeare wrote as if he had been Marlowe's apprentice.

Marlowe's Ghost: The Blacklisting of the Man Who Was Shakespeare explores the possibility that persecution of a writer who dared to question authority may have led to the greatest literary cover-up of all time.

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Whoever loved that loved not at first sight Aug. 12 2012
I bought numerous Marlowe books because of my growing interest in Marlowe's works. If you're like me the more you read of both Marlowe's and Shakespeare works, the more you will question your assumptions about who wrote Shakespeare.

Some of the books on the subject are out of print or high priced. Caluin Hoffman's The Murder of the Man who was Shakespeare conuerted my thinking, with his numerous parallel quotations, and his work on As You Like It. Alex Jack has written a tremendous two uolume edition of Hamlet using the 1604 quarto, and featuring 100 plus quotations from Marlowe's plays. The book with Marlowe's picture contains both the play text and the quotes, a must read for anyone studying Marlowe.

All 7 of the known Marlowe plays are quoted in Hamlet. In Edward 2 Mortimer admits to killing a man once by pouring quicksiluer down his ears. This is how Hamlet's father was killed. In addition the speak the speech segment is based on Marlowe's Dido dealing with the killing of Priam, 70 lines in Hamlet spent discussing this among other things. Undiscouered country from Hamlet's speech also repeats from Edward 2 where Morimer goes to discouer countries yet unknown.

The killing of Hamlet, Laertes and the King with a poisoned sword which changes hands, mirrors the death of King Henry in Massacre of Paris, where the king is fatally stabbed with a poisoned dagger by a murderous friar which he wrestles from his hands and then turns on the friar killing him. Hamlet discusses returning to Wittenberg to Uniuersity, where, as we know, Dr Faust liues. In Jew of Malta Barabas poisons his daughter. In Hamlet Cladius accidentally poisons his wife. Hamlet says: 'Get thee to the nunnery. In JOM Barabas sends his daughter to a nunnery.
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Amazon.com: 4.3 out of 5 stars  9 reviews
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars well grounded and insightful Nov. 15 2008
By Alexander - Published on Amazon.com
Pinksen provides an excellent, well grounded and insightful introduction to the argument that the works commonly attributed to Shakespeare were actually written by Christopher Marlowe, another playwright.

It is of particular note that Pinksen grounds his argument in Marlowe's revolutionary contribution to English theatre, a role acknowledged by mainstream literary scholars. He also draws entirely on mainstream literature to show that Shakespeare's works are not only indebted to Marlowe, but are generally seen as a development of Marlowe's works.

Pinksen covers a lot of ground, including Marlowe's apparent `murder' in 1593 and the grounds for doubting his death; the reasons for questioning that Shakespeare of Stratford wrote the works attributed to him; the relationship between Shakespeare and Jonson; the many allusions in Shakespeare's works to Marlowe's; the role played by the actor Shakespeare and in producing Marlowe's post-1593 works; and the autobiographical dimension of Marlowe's works as Shakespeare. Pinksen also discusses stylometric computer analyses of Marlowe's and Shakespeare's works. Interestingly, Pinksen draws an extended parallel with the blacklisting of authors during the McCarthy era, which to this day leaves a number of films wrongly attributed.

Last but not least, Pinksen shows that Marlowe is the only one of the alternative authorship candidates who had any real need to obscure his authorship, considering that he was a fugitive from the law who had probably been helped in his escape by people at the heart of Elizabeth's government.

What is thankfully missing from Pinksen's book are any unwarranted speculations about Marlowe's life after his faked death, bar for that he continued writing plays. Neither does Pinksen worry about numerous fringe issues, such as the identity of W.H. or the Dark Lady, which have occupied other proponents of Marlowe. A few minor flaws or unwarranted speculations can hence be forgiven.

Overall, Pinksen's book is an excellent and well written counter to the currently predominant anti-Stratfordian claim that Shakespeare's works were written by the Earl of Oxford.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars history reviewed Oct. 17 2010
By Frederick L. Marfell - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Fascinating look at what might have really happened to Christopher Marlowe and why his "sink into oblivion" may have happened.A good followup to "The Murder of the Man Who Was Shakespeare." Fascinating !
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Well written and insightful Feb. 13 2009
By J. Albert - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I read everything I can find regarding Marlowe and the authorship debate, so when I pick up a book like this one I do not expect to find much that is new. I was pleasantly surprised that this book had a refreshing approach, was well organized and a good read, and contained quite a bit of new information. I particularly appreciated the author's insights regarding Ben Jonson, which helped answer a number of questions I had regarding his First Folio dedication.
5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Marlowe's Ghost April 2 2009
By H. R. Shawhan - Published on Amazon.com
Very carefully researched and well written. An excellent buy. Should
put to shame those fanciful and imaginative biographies of Shake-speare
which many are still trying to write to justify their existence as literary
Adherents on all sides of the "authorship question" have only what at best could be called circumstantial evidence with which to back their claims.
However, Mr. Pinksen's book presents the case for "beyond a reaasonable
doubt" far more convincingly than any of those preceding it.
7 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Much Ado about Something" Jan. 31 2009
By E. A. Lovitt - Published on Amazon.com
I enjoyed "Marlowe's Ghost" on two levels: it was my first introduction to the controversy over who really wrote Shakespeare's sonnets and plays; and it is filled with amazing background detail on the Elizabethan period in English history. For instance, I never realized that Giordano Bruno, "the mad priest of the sun" actually spent time in England before he was imprisoned and burnt as a heretic in Rome.

Bruno even turns up, thinly disguised as `Saxon Bruno,' one of the central characters in Marlowe's "Doctor Faustus."

English dramatist, Christopher Marlowe is a fascinating historical character in his own right. Did he really die in a tavern brawl at age 29, or was he smuggled out of England by powerful friends to avoid charges of atheism (and a death similar to Bruno's), and continued to publish works that were `fronted' by one William Shake-Speare, "a businessman with no evidence of education, raised by illiterate parents, who fostered an illiterate household..."

This author isn't the first to present the theory that Marlowe was the real author behind the plays and sonnets attributed Shakespeare. Starting with It Was Marlowe (1895) by Wilber Gleason Zeigler (who also believed Marlowe was eventually murdered by Ben Jonson in 1598!) and continuing through Marlowe-Shakespeare Connection: A New Study of the Authorship Question(2008) by Samuel Blumenfeld , there are many historians with a "reluctance to believe that works of genius can be produced by a person of relatively humble birth or by one who did not enjoy a university education."

It was hard to shake the image of a balding, goateed playwright from my mind, but this author finally convinced me to do so in his chapter "Sonnets of Exile." If the Sonnets are as autobiographical as scholars purport them to be, they must have been written by Marlowe, not the businessman from Stratford. You need to read "Marlowe's Ghost" and decide for yourself who was the real author of the greatest dramas in the English language.

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