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The Santafied Shakespeare

Dec 212013
 By , December 21, 2013

Is St. Nicholas the real author of ‘Shakespeare’ works?

Saint nicholas ShakespeareOver the years commentators have asked: who really authored the plays attributed to William Shakespeare? Some have answered “Francis Bacon.”  Others propose Edward de Vere or William Stanley.  Still others suggest Shakespeare himself, posing covertly as Bacon, de Vere or Stanley.

However, no one has suggested one implausible, yet possible, hypothesis: Could the author of the Shakespearean oeuvre be none other than the immortal St. Nicholas of Patara, also known as Santa Claus, the 4th century saint who became popular for his secrecy and generosity?

Right, probably not. But still, consider the following excerpts from manuscripts recently unearthed in Bari on the Adriatic.

From Romeo and Juliet (in which Santa is addressed by an admirer):

But, soft! What sled o’er yonder rooftop breaks?
It’s from the north, its silhouette blocks the sun.
Sit down, fat Claus, don’t kill my enviable tan,
Me, who is already white and pale as the moon.
Your vestless livery is but white and red
And none but elves do wear it; cast it off.
He is my Sleigh-dude, O, he is my Saint!
O that he knew he were!
He speaks, yet he says only ho-ho-ho: what of that?
His beard grows coarsely; I will barber it.
I am too bold, ’tis not from me he seeks
One of the closest shaves in all the heaven.
He’s here on some business, a twinkle in his eyes.
The redness of his cheeks would shame tomatoes.
See, how he leans his cheeks upon the seat!
O, that I were a hand upon that seat,
That I might goose that cheek!

From Julius Caesar (in which Santa is mourned by a friend, Marcus Blitzenius):

Friends, Snowmen, Eskimos, lend me your earmuffs.
I come to bury Santa, not to praise him.
The elves that men use live after them.
Their toys are oft interred with their bones.
So let it be with Santa.
The noble Rudolph hath told you Santa was ambitious.
If it were so it was a grievous fault, and grievously hath Santa answer’d it.
He hath brought Gucci footware home from Rome,
Whose auction, for sums substantially in excess of the manufacturer’s suggested
retail price, did the general coffers fill:
Did this in Santa seem ambitious?
Yet Rudolph says he was ambitious
And Rudolph is an honourable deer.
You all did see him drinking Metracal:
I thrice insulted him his princely paunch
which he tried thrice to lose: was this ambition?
Yet Brueggers said bagels were nutritious.
And Santa was a gullible man.
I speak not to disprove what Rudolph spoke,
But here I am to speak what I do know.
His sled did hover once, not without Claus:
What Claus will hold the reins when morn arrives?

From Hamlet (in which Santa delivers a soliloquy):

To buy, or not to buy: that is the question.
Whether tis cheaper in the purse to order kids bows and arrows for an outrageous fortune,
Or to buy knock-offs from the Sea of China.
And by Parcel Post import them?  To buy; to ship;
What, more?  And by a ship we say we’ll send
The spare parts and assembly manuals
That fathers err from, ’tis a consumer regulation
Devoutly to be followed.  To buy, to ship;
To ship?  But first to pack.  Ay, there’s my sled.
For in that sled of gifts what dreams may come
When I have shovelled off this mound of snow
With Mrs. Claus, who shows no respect
And makes calamity of my long life;
For I must bear her quips and scorns often.
Thus marriage does make cowards of us all;
And men lose all rights of action — Soft you now!
My fair Ophelia! Impish and ornery,
She all my sins remembers.

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Howard Zaharoff

Howard Zaharoff reads (a lot), writes (mostly humor), teaches (occasionally) and practices law (doesn't everyone?). He is the author of "Stump Your Lawyer!" (Chronicle 2007), and his work has appeared in The Boston Globe, Wall Street Journal, Amazing Stories, Computerworld, The Journal of Irreproducible Results, The Annals of Improbable Research and the books Growing Up Jewish (Penguin 1987) and Sex As a Heap of Malfunctioning Rubble (and Further Improbabilities) (Workman 1993), among other places.

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  • Roger Freed

    Dam! Thats sum reel good riting!

  • P. Beckert

    Oh what mirth you impart with thine pen. Thanks for these fine Shakespearian knock-offs.