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In Essay of Masques and Tryumphs you may see this esteemed device mention’d. In my plays matters are chosen not alone for value as a subject to heare and no longer heed. Each play is the meane, or th’ medium, by which cipher histories are sent forth.


Thus all will, at th’ least serve a twofold purpose, and in Homer’s two mightie works (as in Virgill’s) a trebble, for we treated all translations in th’ first of our cipher work in a manner very like that we followed in concealing our historie, but you can see that th’ former are separated into greater number of parts.  

This was necessarie because o’ the stories told in them, that could not be used in large portio’s, in Cypher writing. Ne’ertheless they serv’d well their purpose, which was to emploie this method of transmitting – as it is my invention, possessing th’ nature of simple questioning and experiment, - and to preserve my works.


I wish’d to have the translations kept until a future race of men, or at th’ least scholars of our owne day rathe’ than th’ commoners, have mark’d, in my open works under different names, a certaine stile that shall prove their origin to be th’ same, because it will be impossible to decipher them fullie until all th works shall be conjoyn’d.


When this is done and all th’ keyes to put th’ parts together have beene found, seeke th’ arguments which are given in th’ bi-literall Cypher, and th’ most of your difficultie shal bee overcome.


Do not turne backe until all th’ secret histories shall have been written, for you can find the true records no where else. From portio’s o’ my Cypher, secrets which the Queene suspected some one would attempt to publish, may bee work’d out with a measure of skill, patient labour and perseverance.


Those who shall turn back merely to avoid difficulties, should ever look to have none of the prizes of life. Th’s Holy Scripture saith: Whoever putteth his hand upon th’ plough and looketh backe is not fit for th’ kingdome of knowledge.


Th’ worke you here note, i.e., th’ Masques, must bee employ’d in writing whole portiones of th’ Iliads that were difficult to adapt to modern poetry or to stage plays. This you will, I doubt not, see ere this, but least it escape your attention I have mention’d it in this place and in other parts of th’ work.


If iterant rules should weary you beyond endurance, pray remember this: the work is as a circle with no apparent beginning: those parts written first may bee last found, therefore I repeat all these directions, and, too,


I would fain make it easier th’s heavy taske impos’d on you, and my greatest labour hath been to but one end – that of ayding your part of th’ work as should assure its successe.

 If once well understood th’ chief requiring can lesse neede myselfe then my decipherer, as this must be done carefuly, and all hath beene at least twice written, as my cypher work or th’ interior letters must have cov’ring.

 Th’ exterior part is so varied, so diverse in both matter and methods of treatment, that it serveth my purpose well, concealing a great work yet also revealing th’ keyes design’d to open th’ secret portalls. And although th’ waye may sometimes seem like an endlesse labyrinth, you cannot faile to thrid it if you heede my rules.

 You will finde as you progresses that I have made your tasks more pleasing then at first, and remember, pray, that your owne name is or must yet be, inseparably joyn’d with mine: therefore if honour cometh to me by my wise use o’ th’ heaven sent talents employed in this invention, you must share th’ renowne.

 It is to none other I may looke for ayde to bring my work forth to men’s sight. Your hand may roll the stone away from the door of the sepulchre and set this Cipher free. It is not dead – it sleepeth, not for four short days like Lazarus of old, but doubtlessly for years, perhaps centuries.

 Is it not then deserving world-wide fame? Trust me it shall not faile, but in every land in which the English language hath a place, shall it be known and honour’d.

 As hath already been said Homer (Iliads and a great part of the Odysses) and Virgial (AEnid and some of the AEglogues) were helpful to me when this invention (cipher), of which I am now giving the historie, was at first employed.

 Finding that this might be follow’d with case in my historie by a key that I us’d, I then follow’d with a similar plan respecting the whole, separating it into parts and using thes fragments after th’ same manner in all the works that I published in my owne (so call’d) name, or that of others. Spencer, Greene, Peel, Marlowe have sold me theirs, - two or three others I have assum’d upon certaine occasions such as this, beside th’ one I beare among men.

 My owne should be like that of my mother – Tidder, {Tudor} since I am the sonne of th’ Queene who came of that line, and as her eldest born, should now sit in her throne in place of him whom she made heire, according to Cecill’s report; but as I am known among English speaking peoples by the name you (until now) thought to be rightfully mine, i.e. th’ name of my foster parents – Bacon, - it is honourable and honoured, - yet have I vowed to make worthier, greater, and more renowned either stile, then it hath beene since it was first bestowed………

 When the Masques – in my friend Ben Jonson’s name – with Part o’ the King’s Coronall Entertaynment have been entir’ly decipher’d, take Greene’s and Peele’s works in th’ order giv’n in the Faerie Queene. My plaies are not finisht, but I intend to put forth several soone. However, bi-literall work requiring so much time, it will readily be seene that there is much to doe after a booke doth seeme to bee ready for the presse, and I could not well saye when other plays will come out.

 The next volume will be under W. Shakespeare’s name.  As some which have now been produced have borne upon the title page his name though all are my owne work, I have allow’d it to stand on manie others which I myself regard as equall in merite.

 When I have assum’d men’s names, th’ next step is to create for each a stile natural to th’ man that yet should (let) my own be seene, as a thrid (thread) o’ warpe in my entire fabrieke soe that it may be…

"In my own words"  by Francis Bacon.

Excerpts From The Bi-Lateral Cypher of Francis Bacon Discovered In His Works and Deciphered By Mrs Elizabeth Wells Gallup.       MASQUES – pp 19 - 23

The Man who should have been King

Dr. John Dee

The Bacon Legacy

Shakespeare or Shaksper

KJV  v  The Shakespeare Folio