Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Shakespeare and Southampton: Two Portraits That Would Suggest These Two Men Were Related

The 1623 First Folio Droeshout Engraving (left, Folger Library) and Myten's 3rd Earl of Southampton (right, Folger Library)

It's curious, I've always thought, that the one historical figure tied most directly to William Shakespeare, the 3rd Earl of Southampton, to whom Shakespeare dedicated two poems, bears such an amazing resemblance to the 1623 Droeshout engraving of Shakespeare, the one likeness vouched for as authentic by a friend of the great playwright's.  It is possible the resemblance between the two men is coincidental.  But, considering the many anomalies famously marring the Droeshout face, it's one hellava coincidence, too, especially since Shakespeare's Sonnets can easily be read as poems written by a father to a young, effeminate son begging him to get married, oy vey, and give me grandchildren.  Anyway, make of it what you will.  

Related post: Does This Mysterious 1602 Portrait Depict Shakespeare and the Earl of Southampton?
Link to Folger Shakespeare Library's Virtual Gallery 

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