The Precious Gem of Secret Letters: Francis Bacon 1576-1655
This has got to be the best Hamlet ever. The sound is not the best.
Francis Bacon, "Of Boldness":
Nay, you shall see a bold fellow many times do Mahomet's miracle. Mahomet made the people believe that he would call an hill to him, and from the top of it offer up his prayers, for the observers of his law. The people assembled; Mahomet called the hill to come to him, again and again; and when the hill stood still, he was never a whit abashed, but said, If the hill will not come to Mahomet, Mahomet, will go to the hill.
I soon after contracted a friendship with that great man and first of geniuses, the "Immortal Shakespeare," and am happy in now having it in my power to refuse the prevailing opinion of his having run his country for deer-stealing, which is as false as it is disgracing. The fact is, Sir, that he had contracted an intimacy with the wife of a country Justice near Stratford, from his having extolled her beauty in a common ballad; and was unfortunately, by his worship himself, detected in a very aukward situation with her. Shakespeare, to avoid the consequences of this discovery, thought it most prudent to decamp. This I had from his own mouth.
With equal falsehood has he been father'd with many spurious dramatic pieces: Hamlet, Othello, As You Like It, the Tempest, and Midsummer's Night Dream, for five; of all which I confess myself to be the author.
The Story of the Learned Pig