Several researchers involved in the Shakespeare authorship question have focused their attention on an obscure group encoded into several Elizabethan texts, a group called the Twice 11 Brethren. John Anthony, an Oxfordian researcher (a proponent of Edward de Vere in the authorship question) has uncovered a lot of information about the Twice 11 Brethren that he shares on his YouTube channel. In one of his videos, Anthony points out the existence of the words “Twice 11 Brethren” in the 42nd chapter of the Book of Job in the King James Bible, a text Francis Bacon helped to edit before its publication in 1611.
The number 42 also shows up in the research of Petter Amundsen, who appears in a documentary with Robert Crumpton called Cracking the Shakespeare Code. In the screenshot below, he’s geometrically dissecting the poem To the Reader of the first Shakespeare folio of 1623 into the parameters of the Freemasonic logo:
Amundsen points out that the main symbol of Freemasonry is based on a geometry of 6 horizontal measures by 7 vertical ones (representing the 7 steps of the ladder to heaven), the product of which is 42. It’s believed that Bacon largely forged the direction of speculative Freemasonry and Rosicrucianism in England during Elizabethan times.
All this talk of 42 brings an old nursery rhyme to mind:
ten and ten and twice eleven… take out six and put in seven
Another, though much later reference to “twice 11″… the first evidence I can find of this rhyme comes from a 19th century book, Nursery Rhymes of England, by Halliwell. It may have been a way to remember that 6 times 7 is 42, or maybe a way to remember that 10 plus 10 plus 11 plus 11 is also 42. But why 42? What is so special about 42, other than it’s the number Douglas Adams’ supercomputer came up with when asked about the meaning of life, the universe, and everything?
Oddly enough, I’ve always thought Douglas Adams and Francis Bacon looked a little bit alike.
My own interest in the Twice 11 Brethren came about when I plotted the first two lines (in Latin) of the Shakespeare funerary plaque into a 9-column grid. When I plot a grid, I try different numbers of columns until I find a grid that produces a grouping or two or three T’s or Tau’s. Here, I found one vertical line of three T’s that I highlighted in yellow, indicating to me that this grid might yield something.
Next, I found the three words highlighted in green and blue: one, one, and eleven (shown as EVLE plus the green N above it). Two ones and an eleven seem to represent the concept of “twice 11” and are shown here in the shape of a 4, which is the number of ones that would be present in “twice 11.”
But I then noticed another word next to “eleven,” a word I wasn’t expecting to see: TOLV, highlighted in purple. It’s a Danish word and somewhat curiously placed next to the word eleven, as tolv means twelve. Normally, a Danish word like that would have escaped my notice, but my own partner is Danish and when we play cribbage together, we count our hands in Danish so I can more easily learn his native language. Because of this, I’m proficient in Danish numbers up through 31, enogtredive or one (en) and (og) thirty (tredive).
And though, in the grid above, we have the word eleven in English, technically we also have the Danish word for eleven, ELLEVE. Oddly enough, the Danish words NI and TI (nine and ten, circled in red) are also present. The sum total of 9, 10, 11, and 12 brings us back around to the beginning, as these numbers add up to 42.
But the presence of Danish numbers also points us to Hamlet, a play Shakespeare set in Denmark. In the first few lines of Scene 1 of Hamlet, we meet a character named Marcellus, a name with two L’s. In the 1600s, the letter L in simple gematria had a value of 11, as there was no letter J and the U and V were interchangeable (see the Elizabethan English alphabet below, comprised of only 24 letters). Two L’s, then, would be a “twice 11.”
It’s right about here that we need to pause and deep-dive down a rabbit hole. In Hamlet, Marcellus describes himself and Horatio as “liege-men to the Dane,” reminding the audience that these men are Danish and speakers of the Danish language. This was actually necessary because of his ancient Roman name, alluding to the historical figure Marcus Claudius Marcellus, the commander of the Roman army that sacked Syracuse in 212 BC, a battle that resulted in the death of the Greek astronomer and mathematician Archimedes. Marcellus reportedly felt very bad that Archimedes had been killed in his military campaign and involved himself personally in a respectful burial. Plutarch tells us in his Parallel Lives: Marcellus that, “Although [Archimedes] made many excellent discoveries, he is said to have asked his kinsmen and friends to place over the grave where he should be buried a cylinder enclosing a sphere, with an inscription giving the proportion by which the containing solid exceeds the contained.” That proportion or ratio was 3:2 (the volume of the cylinder being one-third larger than the volume of the sphere it contained). In my book, The Next Octave, the importance of this ratio (3:2) as expressing the perfect 5th interval in music is discussed at length, but one aspect of it is central to Freemasonry: the G note (highlighted in the Freemasonic logo) is the perfect 5th off the note of C, the very first note produced by the harmonic series. The ratio also represents the power of 3 as dominant over the power of 2, the esoteric concept of the power of 3-6-9 as illustrated in Marko Rodin’s Mobius Circuit.
Finally, to complete our dive down the Marcellus rabbit hole, the tomb for Archimedes would have been completed and installed in 211 BC. (Twice 11)
Returning to the first scene of Hamlet… in line 34, Marcellus describes the ghost of Hamlet’s father as, “twice seen of us.” In Danish, one (EN) is prounounced “een” and this line would sound very much like twice one in Danish: twice seen = twice een. That’s the first 11. A few lines later, Barnardo refers to, “what we two Nights have seen…” That’s the second 11.
This veiled reference to Twice 11 in the text drove me to look for some passages in Hamlet to square on a grid. The most logical passages seemed to be groupings of lines all starting with the letter T, since the Tau holds special importance in Freemasonry. This passage from Act 1, Scene 2 looked promising: eight Ts separated in the middle by a Y.
This passage generated the following 20-column grid with several double Tau groupings (only two of which are highlighted in yellow):
There’s a lot going on in this grid. First, the word TO, circled up top, means “two” in Danish, giving us the phrase 2-2 Brothers in yellow and blue. Just below that appear the words ROSY and BROR (brother in Danish) and off to the right, highlighted in green, are four EN‘s (one’s) representing 11-11. Below these we can see the pink shape of a key, comprised of the words ONE, ONE, BROTH. No English word “twice” is present here, but the words TO GANGE, in light blue, mean “twice” (or two times) in Danish.
Near the bottom of the grid we find ELUE highlighted in orange, a close representation of ELLEVE in Danish. Directly below that, highlighted in pink, are EN (one), NI (nine), and TI (ten), though TOLV (twelve) is missing. However, at the left and highlighted in blue are three FOUR’s which could easily take the place of TOLV. (The words MESE and MESI in green pertain to a different area of my research; the concept of the mese is more fully explained in my book, The Next Octave.)
The next passage of Hamlet that looked promising for a grid is found in Act 3, Scene 1 with four connected letter T’s:
Here we see the word DANES highlighted in orange, TUICE in purple, ELLUA in green, and four circled EN’s. At this point, it seems obvious that Shakespeare, regardless of his identity, was in the habit of encoding references to the Twice 11 Brethren. But in addition to finding these references in the 1611 King James Bible, the Shakespeare funerary plaque, and the play Hamlet, we can also find the Twice 11 Brethren encoded into works specifically authored by Francis Bacon, himself.
In Cracking the Shakespeare Code, Amundsen further showed that Bacon, as a Freemason, was very focused on the numbers 53 and 37. He explained it had to do with the angles found in the Freemasonic logo, which creates two right traingles, called 3:4:5 triangles. The interior angles of a right triangle with one angle at 90 degrees are 53 and 37.
Founder of the Francis Bacon Research Trust, Peter Dawkins, explains the importance of these angle values further in his essay, Rosicrucian Mathematics: “[T]he 3:4:5 sides of the right-angled triangle are used to symbolise respectively the spirit, body and soul. These in turn relate to the Holy Trinity, wherein spirit is associated with the Father (heaven), body with the Mother (earth), and soul with the Son (light). Whereas the angle between Father and Mother is 90°, the angle between Father and Son is 53° degrees. For this reason, the 53° angle is of particular importance, symbolising the formulaic expression, “The Father and I are One,” as used by Jesus Christ and recorded in the Bible. This represents the final attainment of initiation. The third angle of 37° refers to the oneness of the Mother and Son, which is the relationship at birth, the beginning of initiation. The beginning is the Alpha; the ending is the Omega: hence 37 and 53 symbolise the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, as given in Revelation (22:13): ‘I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last.’”
In Bacon’s essay New Atlantis, something interesting happens on page 11. If you draw a 37-degree line from the page number 11, the line takes you through the word Brethren (highlighted in purple), then hits a giant L, equaling 11 in simple cipher and giving us the necessary second 11 (after the page number, itself):
But that’s not all. The book housing this copy of New Atlantis is Bacon’s larger Sylva Sylvarum, or The Natural Historie in which he posthumously published (via his secretary William Rawley) 1,000 scientific experiments. On page 121 (= 11 x 11) of Sylva Sylvarum, we can draw another line from the page number, itself, this one at 53 degrees. This line also intersects the word Brethren, eventually pointing all the way down to the italicized words at the bottom of page 120: Conservation of Bodies, which may have been the primary activity of the Twice 11 Brethren. Petter Amundsen, in Cracking the Shakespeare Code, makes a special point of discussing Bacon’s work in conserving paper that’s laid out here in Sylva Sylvarum, suggesting the possible existence of preserved hand-written Shakespearean manuscripts.
This line connects not only with Brethren, but a more complete Brethren of the Rose. Note that this is not a passage discussing Rosicrucianism at all; it’s a scientific treatise on various classes of flowers, and the brethren of the rose here refers to flowers listed earlier in the paragraph: “Prime-Rofes, Bryar-Rofes, fingle Musk-Rofes, fingle Pinks, and Gilliflowers…”
So what does it all mean?
To interpret the importance of the “Twice 11 Brethren,” it’s necessary to consult some later chapters of my book, The Next Octave, in which I discuss Bacon’s attempt to point the reader of New Atlantis to a series of musical means in the harmonic series (for more information please consult Chapter 12, Harmonic means of production, Chapter 13, An alchemical wedding of tones, and Chapter 14, Usurpation of the mese). Every note in the harmonic series is generated as a mean, and every note likewise takes the position of mese between the two notes surrounding it.
In ancient Greek, the term “mese” meant “middle” and was closely related to the word “meson,” later changed to the word “mason” of fraternal lore (discussed more fully in my book).
mese (middle) μες
meson (middle) μέσον
However, returning to the 1611 King James Bible that Francis Bacon helped edit, there is a passage in the book of Matthew that likely held special importance to Bacon and his fellow brethren. It’s Matthew 11:11 and below is the passage in Greek with one specific word emphasized:
ἀμὴν λέγω ὑμῖν, οὐκ ἐγήγερται ἐν γεννητοῖς
γυναικῶν μείζων Ἰωάννου τοῦ βαπτιστοῦ· ὁ δὲ
μικρότερος ἐν τῇ βασιλείᾳ τῶν οὐρανῶν μείζων αὐτοῦ ἐστιν.
Notice this bolded word μείζων is somewhat similar to the words MESE μες and MESON μέσον. The word here, μείζων, is MEIZON, but instead of meaning middle, it means greater and refers specifically to John the Baptist:
It seems likely that the Twice 11 Brethren were fans of John the Baptist, the greatest of all human men. However, they were also a group of men emphasizing the idea put forth in Matthew 11:11 that anyone aspiring and ascending to the kingdom of heaven is greater, even, than he. Jake Roberts and John Edwards have produced work that somewhat corroborates this theory and expands on it quite a bit in Episode 18 of the Ghosts of Bacon podcast.
So while a Freemason might originally have been a bricklayer stacking stones according to each stone’s center or MESON, a speculative Freemason of the kind Bacon promoted was likely meant to be recognized as a MEIZON, one greater even than John the Baptist, a position made possible by ascending the Masonic seven-stepped ladder to heaven.