The authorship question for The Winter’s Tale is pretty much a slam-dunk. It’s Shakespeare, through and through.
What’s interesting (at least to me) is the sub-question of order…
Now, I’ve got The Winter’s Tale being later than Cymbeline. But as I’ve discussed before, my ordering is nothing but a guess, given the possible first performance dates, publication dates, and contemporary evidence. And I know that many scholars place them in the same order.
The New Oxford Shakespeare reverses the order of the two, however, with The Winter’s Tale coming out before Cymbeline. They admit, “Stylistically, narratively (loss, separation, reunion, and redemption), and generically (Romance), they seem to have been written in the same period” (Taylor and Loughnane. “The Canon and Chronology.” The New Oxford Shakespeare: Authorship Companion, Oxford University Press. 2017. 579.).
So why place this one first?
Well, Cymbeline has no allusions to Plutarch whereas The Winter’s Tale does. This (among other reasons), they argue, places this play closer to the Plutarch-heavy plays of Timon, Coriolanus, and Antony and Cleopatra (579). They take this to mean that as Shakespeare moved further away from those plays, he used fewer and fewer allusions to Plutarch, putting The Winter’s Tale first.
I love this sort of stuff.