It's a 400-year-old mystery that seemed pretty well solved: what exactly did the great William Shakespeare look like?
Almost every person who has ever taken an English class is familiar with the image widely used to portray the playwright, poet, actor and generally acknowledged literary genius. But today, a British magazine announced it had discovered the only picture of the man created in his lifetime.
Country Life, a home decor and real estate publication, explains in a video on its site how one of its writers, Mark Griffiths, believes he found a new portrait of the artist, that looks like this:
Griffiths believes the cover of The Herball (published in 1597) depicts Shakespeare at age 33 dressed in Roman clothing, though many British historians were quick to disagree with the analysis.
"One has seen so many claims on Shakespeare based on somebody claiming to crack a code. And nobody else has apparently been able to decipher this for 400 years," Professor Michael Dobson, director of the Shakespeare Institute at the University of Birmingham, told the BBC. "And there's no evidence that anybody thought that this was Shakespeare at the time."
It's certainly a debate that will have plenty of scholars up in arms — especially considering there are those who believe Shakespeare was not one man, but many people.
As for the pictures with which you're likely already familiar, those still are maintained to be true likenesses, albeit painted after Shakespeare died.
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