Yesterday morning when I opened up my email, I got this message from someone whose name I did not recognize.
I thought you might enjoy:
(Name redacted by me)
That is not unusual. I get emails from time to time from people who think I may be interested in something. I did not click on the links (I am wary about links being used to propagate viruses) but the wording of URLs seemed to indicate that they had something to do with Shakespeare’s (or the Bard’s) sonnets, which seemed reasonable since the email arrived the day after I had two posts about the controversy over the Bard’s authorship.
But while I was going through the rest of my emails, there was another one from the same person that arrived (with an attachment) just 40 minutes after the first and it had a decidedly unfriendly tone:
See attached. And try and show some integrity.
I was nonplussed as to why, in the space of 40 minutes, he had felt the need to make a gratuitous insinuation about my integrity.
But, wait! That is not all. While I was mulling over the strangeness of these emails, today I get another one with another attachment, where the hostility was raised all the way to 11.
Clearly you are a fraud and a coward like all “free thinkers”.
it appears virtually all of you are too stupid to recognize that the current understanding of the Sonnets was a guess and clearly a bad one.
But wasted on morons like you no doubt.
Now I was intrigued. Clearly this person has some theory about the Sonnets and wants to create a wider awareness of it. That is fine. But why he does that in a way almost guaranteed to alienate the people he is trying to reach baffled me.
So I did a search on his name and found that I am not the only one to whom he has sent hostile missives. He seems to be quite prolific. For example, here is someone who writes about his interaction with him on Twitter. I also learned from another site that the sender of the emails is a believer in the Earl of Oxford being the Bard.
I mentioned in my Shakespeare posts that the issue of the Bard’s authorship arouses strong passions but I did not expect that my own non-polemical posts on the topic would arouse such ire, since I expressed no preferences about who might have written the canon. The general consensus seems to be to ignore the emails because if you respond in any way, you will receive a never-ending stream of angry and insulting messages. So I will do just that.