£10m for 'only' Shakespeare portrait

November 20 2022

Image of £10m for 'only' Shakespeare portrait

Picture: Guardian

Regular readers will know I despair at how the press can be so credulous at seemingly any news of a new art discovery involving Shakespeare. The latest, reported as being "the only signed and dated image of William Shakespeare created during his lifetime", is to go on sale with an asking price of £10m. Despite there being no direct evidence it is Shakespeare. The 'signed and dated' part refers to the signature of Robert Peake, who painted the above portrait of someone, who is not Shakespeare. The painting is being offered in 'a private treaty sale', and was unveiled in a London hotel. All of which should raise red flags, but instead had the press queueing up to take photos. Such is the appetite for news (and clicks). Examples here, and here.

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