A Stolen Shakespeare First Folio Found?
- by Michael Stillman
Scott reportedly shares a small home with his 80-year-old mother. Neighbors described him as reclusive and yet flamboyant, an odd combination. He has a large collection of rare books (which the authorities confiscated and are looking over very carefully), along with a few other distinctive items, such as a Ferrari and expensive suits. The Ferrari replaced an earlier Lamborghini and Rolls. He enjoys Cuban cigars and fine wine. He also travels a lot, and has a beautiful 21-year-old Cuban girlfriend, hence the Cuban connection. His means of support is a small pension and incapacity allowance of some sort he receives. If you, like the police, are wondering how he manages all this on such a small income, he reportedly said that his mother provides the necessary funds from an inheritance she received from her late husband, an electrical engineer. Dad must have lived frugally and saved generously.
As for the book, he explained that it came from the family of a friend of his young Cuban fiancée. It could not be the Durham copy, he explained, because they have owned theirs since the 19th century. Apparently the owners couldn't take it out of Cuba themselves - not very proletariat looking taking a $20 million book out of the country, though it's not clear how Mr. Scott was able to sneak it out. Maybe Cuban security guards don't know first folios. And I can't help but wonder how that Cuban family entrusted an odd foreigner with their $20 million book. I guess they are not so cynical and suspicious as we in the English-speaking world.