Barry Clarke and The Virginia Company’s role in The Tempest

Dr Barry R. Clarke, whose PhD was supported by the Society, has written an academic book chapter ‘The Virginia Company’s role in The Tempest’ in Petar Penda, The Whirlwind of Passion: New Critical Perspectives on William Shakespeare (Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2016: It shows through the examination of rare collocations how Francis Bacon is connected to the play.  

Professor Andrew Gurr former Chairman of the Globe Theatre design committee is mentioning it in his New Variorum edition of The Tempest (in preparation) and says:

“This is excellent news, and a perfect account of the story. I’m sure that Bacon was a lot closer to Shakespeare than most current accounts allow him to be.’’

The original New Variorum series ran from 1871 to 1955 and was a major scholarly project to publish every Shakespeare play together with an introductory essay on its dating, sources, etc. The latest New Variorum started in 2010, has 15 volumes in progress, and is an attempt by the Modern Language Association of America to update the previous series. Professor Andrew Gurr is an eminent Shakespeare scholar working on The Tempest with three assistant editors. 

We congratulate Barry on this significant breakthrough: recognition in the academic world of the link between Bacon and the work of the man known as Shakespeare; This is the first ever published academic paper to argue that Francis Bacon contributed to a Shakespeare play.

A synopsis of Barry’s PhD thesis is attached and can also be found on the website William Shakespeare page under Current Research.

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