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THE GREAT CRYPTOGRAM:

FRANCIS BACON'S CIPHER in The
SO-CALLED SHAKESPEARE PLAYS. KILO

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2 BY IGNATIUS DONNELLY, Author
of "Atlantis: The Antediluvian World and
"Ragnarök:The Age of Fire and Gravel”

.

"And now I will vnclaspe a Secret booke
And to your quicke conceyuing Discontents
Ile reade you Matter, deépe and dangerous,
As full of perill and aduenturous Spirit,
As to o'er-walke a current,roaring loud,
On the vnstedfast footing of a Speare."

Ist Henry N., Act I, Sc.3.

-Chicago;
•New York and London
R.S.Peale & Company.

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TO MY DEAR

WİFE
This Book
is affectionately

DEDICATED.

INTRODUCTION.

THE

'HE question may be asked by some, Why divide your

book into two parts, an argument and a demonstration ? If the Cipher is conclusive, why is any discussion of probabilities necessary ?

In answer to this I would state that, for a long time before I conceived the idea of the possibility of there being a Cipher in the Shakespeare Plays, I had been at work collecting proofs, from many sources, to establish the fact that Francis BACON was the real author of those great works. Much of the material so amassed is new and curious, and well worthy of preservation. While the Cipher will be able to stand alone, these facts will throw many valuable side-lights upon the story told therein.

Moreover, that part of the book called “PARALLELISMS” will, I hope, be interesting to scholars, even after BACON's authorship of the Plays is universally acknowledged, as showing how the same great mind unconsciously cast itself forth in parallel lines, in prose and poetry, in the two greatest sets of writings in the world.

And I trust the essays on the geography, the politics, the religion and the purposes of the Plays will possess an interest apart from the question of authorship.

I have tried to establish every statement I have made by abundant testimony, and to give due credit to each author from whom I have borrowed.

For the shortcomings of the work I shall have to ask the indulgence of the reader. It was written in the midst of many interruptions and distractions; and it lacks that perfection which ampler leisure might possibly have given it.

As to the actuality of the Cipher there can be but one conclusion. A long, continuous narrative, running through many pages, detailing historical events in a perfectly symmetrical,

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