What is it about?

A mention of 'the Ashford Cage' in Shakespeare's Henry VI Part 2 turns out to refer to specific location in this Kentish town. The evidence supports long-standing arguments that Christopher Marlowe (who was born and raised in Kent) wrote the Act 4 of the play.

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Why is it important?

Marlowe has recently been given official co-authorship of the Henry VI plays by the New Oxford Shakespeare. The attribution was given on the basis of modern computational methods, whose accuracy is under review. But signs of Marlowe's involvement nevertheless exist via traditional routes of enquiry.


Though the methods underpinning the New Oxford Shakespeare's attribution of the Henry VI plays to Marlowe are problematic, Kentish references in Act 4 make it likely that Marlowe was indeed involved in writing 2 Henry VI.

Dr Ros Barber
Goldsmiths, University of London

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: 2 Henry VI and the Ashford Cage, Notes and Queries, August 2019, Oxford University Press (OUP),
DOI: 10.1093/notesj/gjz063.
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