Shakespeare’s birthday was actually yesterday, but I don’t think he’d mind that I’m a little late. Of course, we’re probably just guessing about his real birthday anyways.
A few years ago (ok, many years ago), I went to England on my honeymoon and we toured the Globe Theater. They had just discovered that the real Globe was actually not too far from the spot where they built this replica. It was really a lovely experience, and one I would recommend for any fan of literature.
Shakespeare, a Secret Prince
I have been a fan of Shakespeare my entire life, but several years ago I finally became convinced that he was a front man for his plays and not the actual writer. What I mean is, he is a figurehead, perhaps real and perhaps just a made up representation to conceal the identity of the real author. I read a fascinating book (Oxford: Son of Queen Elizabeth I), which really presented a scenario that appealed to many of the questions I had had over the years. Many of the facts about his life simply do not go with what we know about the literature he produced. I think it very plausible that Shakespeare was actually a secret prince, given the subject matter and wordsmithing of his works.
A few years ago a movie came out (Anonymous), that for me really aligned with what I believed about Shakespeare. I thought they illustrated the possibility of how these plays came out really beautifully, and even covered the sensitive topic of how he could have been both Elizabeth I’s son and baby daddy tastefully. I do believe Elizabeth I probably did have children (the fact that she and Robert Dudly had adjoining rooms for years makes me think she was not the “Virgin Queen” she claimed), but since she was great at crafting her image and since there is speculation and no evidence, we can only assume and not verify.
There is so much more I could write about this topic, but if you’re curious I encourage to check out some of the literature and even movies surrounding this topic. Tudor history in general has always been a fascinating one for me. I’ve read dozens and dozens (or more!) of books, both fiction and nonfiction, on the subject, and watched many documentaries. There was a time in my life when I could not get enough Tudor history. The people, the events, the way their lives changed history… it was all so fascinating and remains so today. I still like to catch a documentary on them now and then when I see one pop up. I loved them so much I created a “throne room” out of my bathroom, featuring a Tudor monarch shower curtain I made, crowns, and a poster with the words of Shakespeare which sits opposite “the throne.” (Throne room, get it? LOL. Okay, I thought it was rather cute.)
Shakespeare, Translator of the King James Bible?
I believe King James hired many translators for the Bible. So I don’t think Shakespeare was the only one working on it, but I do believe that he had a hand in the translation of the King James Version (KJV) of the Bible, especially my favorite parts, the Psalms. Dr. Dennis E. Hensley states:
William Shakespeare lived from 1564-1616. The creation of the King James Bible began in the year 1610, the year in which Shakespeare would have been 46 years old.
If you turn to Psalm 46 in the King James Bible, and if you count exactly 46 words into the psalm, you find the word “shake.” If you count 46 words back from the end of that psalm, you will find the word “spear.”
It just seems too coincidental to think that it was by fluke circumstances that the 46th Psalm would be translated around the time of Shakespeare’s 46th birthday and that the 46th word from the start and the 46th word from the end would be “shake” and “spear.” My professional opinion is, Shakespeare translated that section of the King James Bible and he slipped in a secret byline to prove it was his work.
This is the type of coincidence and humor that marks other parts of his writing, so it wouldn’t surprise me to find that he had a hand in translating it. The lyricism of that particular book of the Bible does seem similar to the other writings of Shakespeare. Again, saying this hundreds of years later is just a guess on my part, but I gravitate toward this explanation and this is why I want to share it with you. Of course, the Psalms are something I talk of constantly, but I also enjoy other works by Shakespeare. This painting I did a few years ago features a line from Henry VI: “O Lord, that lends me life, Lend me a heart replete with thankfulness!”
Let’s Celebrate With a Sale on Painting the Psalms All Year Long
Since Shakespeare could have been one of the translators of the KJV of the Bible, and since that little quirk about the 46th Psalm is actually pretty interesting, I say let’s celebrate his birthday with a sale. Why not! From now until the end of the month (April 30th), Painting the Psalms All Year Long will be half off.
My collective course Painting the Psalms All Year Long is actually already a savings of half off, but with this “Shakespeare Sale” it is an additional half off!
That means you get all twelve (12) of the Painting the Psalms ecourses included in Painting the Psalms All Year Long for just $50.
And if you want further inspiration, consider taking one of my Painting the Psalms ecourses. These ecourses are all separate projects where we create a mixed media painting with inspiration from a particular Psalm. It’s a great way to get into the beauty of the Psalms in a different way. OR, consider picking up my book, Painting the Psalms.