Shakespeare's Stanley Epitaphs in Tong, Shropshire
- on the tomb of Sir Thomas & Sir Edward Stanley in St Bartholomew's Church Tong, with their first ever biographies
Helen Moorwood, published by RJL Smith and Associates, Much Wenlock.
172 mm x 240 mm, 472 pages, ISBN: 978-0-9573492-2-3
This book plays the role of 'prequel' to a re-investigation of the 'Lancastrian Shakespeare' theory, which claims that young William Shakespeare spent some time in Lancashire with the Catholic Hoghtons and Heskeths. One family that has now emerged as crucial in explaining Shakespeare's ancestry and early biography, including his spell in Lancashire, is the Stanley Family, Earls of Derby, 'Kings of Lancashire' and Lords of Man. Sir Edward Stanley, the 'hero' of this book, born in Lancashire, was a grandson of Edward 3rd, a nephew of Henry 4th and first cousin of brothers Ferdinando 5th and William 6th Earls of Derby.
Sir Edward received in 1601-3 from his friend William Shakespeare two Verse Epitaphs for his family tomb in Tong, Shropshire. These are the only ones still to be seen today except for the one on the Bard's own gravestone. Sir Edward, through his Stanley cousins, his Vernon mother and his Percy wife, happened to be rather closely related to three Earl Alternative Authorship Candidates, several characters in Shakespeare's Lancastrian History Plays and several candidates for the 'Dark Lady' of the Sonnets.Sir Edward can thus be seen as a pivotal figure in the Shakespeare-Stanley constellation. This book concludes with the first ever biographies of of him and his father Sir Thomas Stanley, who suffered for planning to help Mary, Queen of Scots escape from Chatsworth in 1570.
This book includes 29 Chapters, 12 Appendices, an 8-page colour block and 99 black and white illustrations, and a comprehensive Bibliography and Index.
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