An exhaustive study of the composition and origins of Shakespeare's plays and sonnets written between 1592 and 1598, the period of his patronage by the Earl of Southampton. The author presents documentary evidence to support the claim that the Bard's work at this period reflected his interest in and regard for his patron. Mr. Acheson develops in detail his thesis of the identity of the Dark Lady and presents, both in the body of the book and in a lengthy appendix, evidence to support the contention that she was Mistress Davenant, the wife of a tavern keeper. This title is cited and recommended by the Cambridge Bibliography of English Literature. Arthur Acheson (1864-1930) was a noted Shakespeare scholar and author of a number of books on Shakespeare.