Saturday, July 17, 2010

Oxfordian Verily Anderson Paget passes to eternity

Derran Charlton reports sad news from England:

It is with the deepest regret that I notify readers of the Oberon Shakespeare Study Group of the passing through nature to eternity of Verily Anderson Paget, aged 95.
 
Verily died at her Norfolk, England home July 16, 2010 in her own bed, of a suspected heart-attack -- truly a blessing.
 
I was speaking to her only the day before. Verily was as fit as a fiddle. She explained that during her upcoming medical, her doctor would probably congratulate her on her excellent health!
 
Verily was extremely robust, always travelling abroad. She had recently returned home from the Hermitage, Russia, after singing with her local choir. Prince Charles awarded her a cycling award for her charitable works, and Charlton Ogburn, Jr. gave her the Charlton Ogburn award for her many contributions to Oxfordianism. One of Verily`s many enthusiasms in life was to walk her guide-dog Alfie, most days, half-a-mile down the drive to Templewood, and through her glorious ancient woodlands.
 
Verily must have been the oldest surviving Oxfordian, having been introduced to the cause by her first husband, Captain Donald Clive Anderson, over 70 years ago. In fact, her beloved husband, a playwright, poet, player, and play-producer had been a close friend and ardent supporter of John Thomas Looney (1870-1944).
 
Verily`s close friends ranged from Royalty, the Queen and her family, Princess Diana, Princes William and Harry named in honor of William Shakespeare and King Henry V. Her immediate relations included archbishops, statesmen, military leaders, lord lieutenants, poet laureates, international musicians, winners of Victoria Crosses and Noble Peace Prizes. Her second husband, Paul Paget, was the Surveyor of St. Paul`s - a position previously held by Sir Christopher Wren. He was also the restorer of many of Wren`s churches following the 1939 war. Her first-cousin was Antarctic explorer Robert Scott. Charles Darwin was her great-great-great-uncle. Florence Nightingale was a great-great-great-aunt. One of her cousins, now living in Castle Hedingham, owned the Elizabethan manor-house that originally belonged to Horatio Vere, at Tilbury-Juxta-Clare. Her ancesstors included the Duchess of Derby, as portrayed in the film The Duchess. Verily`s traceable family history dated from 932.
 
Verily, together with Sir Derek Jacobi, were the joint-Patrons of the De Vere Society. She was a prolific writer, having written 53 published books and films, including her Oxfordian endeavor The de Veres of Castle HedinghamOnly two days ago, she told me that she had just completed her fifty-third book A History of Herstmonceaux Castle (where she had lived following the war) for the University of Canada.
 
Verily leaves four daughters and one son Edward, who was deliberately named in honor of Edward de Vere and christened in the same 1563 church in Stoke Newington where Edward de Vere`s son Henry had been christened.
 
Her sudden death has come as a tremendous shock to all who were truly blessed by her extraordinary life and personality.
 
A true Renaissance Lady has passed our way. We are all deeply inspired and most grateful for her life.
 
Derran Charlton

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