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Clare Asquith

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Name  Clare Asquith
Role  Author
Books  Shadowplay

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Spouse  Raymond Asquith, 3rd Earl of Oxford and Asquith (m. 1978)
People also search for  Raymond Asquith, 3rd Earl of Oxford and Asquith

Clare asquith as you like it and the elizabethan catholic dilemma

Clare Asquith, the Countess of Oxford and Asquith (born 2 June 1951) is a British independent scholar and author of Shadowplay: the Hidden Beliefs and Coded Politics of William Shakespeare, which has posited that Shakespeare was a covert Catholic whose works contain coded language which was used by the Catholic underground, particularly the Jesuits, in Reformation-era England, but also appealed to the monarchy in a plea for toleration. Her book was the first to note the existence of the code as a subtext in Shakespeare.


Her work was hailed by some, including the Catholic writer Piers Paul Read, as "dramatic, important" and "painstaking scholarship". It was, however, reviewed unfavourably by Dr David Womersley, Professor of English Literature at Oxford University, who deemed it "a ridiculous book".

She has lectured on Shakespeare in both the UK and North America. Her ideas about sixteenth-century code were first raised while observing coded messages in Soviet dissident plays while her husband served as a diplomat in Moscow during the Cold War, and were first published in The Shakespeare Newsletter and The Times Literary Supplement.

Personal life

Lady Oxford was born Mary Clare Pollen, the eldest of the five children of the architect Francis Anthony Baring Pollen (1926–1987) and Marie Therese Sheridan (later Viscountess Sidmouth, wife of the 7th peer). She lives in Somerset with her husband, former diplomat Raymond Asquith, 3rd Earl of Oxford and Asquith (whom she married in 1978) and their five children.


Clare Asquith Wikipedia

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