• Showerman said the plays also have references to the Hippocratic Oath taken by physicians, resuscitation, toxicology, a variety of infectious diseases, circulation of the blood and mental illnesses, among other medical topics.

      Although Showerman likes to debunk the idea of Shakespeare as the author of the plays, he said his research into the canon has made him appreciate the works themselves even more. It has also enriched his experience as a theater-lover.

    • Showerman is among those who think the advanced medical knowledge displayed in the plays proves they were authored by the highly educated and well-traveled Earl of Oxford, Edward de Vere. Showerman and others argue that Shakespeare — a successful merchant involved in the theater — didn’t have the earl’s access to learned people and extensive private libraries that included medical literature.
    • Retired emergency room physician Earl Showerman believes that a detailed description of syphilis symptoms in “Timon of Athens” helps prove that the Earl of Oxford is the real author of plays attributed to William Shakespeare.

      Speaking to a pair of prostitutes, Timon directs them to sow a disease that will collapse men’s noses, ruin their voices, make their hair fall out, cause their shin bones to develop sharp edges and quell their love-making abilities.

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