<ul><li>William Shakespeare was the most famous playwright and writer in the English language. He is generally regarded as the most famous English writer and often called England’s National Poet and the “Bard of Avon”. </li></ul>
<ul><li>Little is known about Shakespeare’s early life apart from the fact that he was born in Stratford-upon-Avon 1564 and married Anne Hathaway at the age of 18. </li></ul>
The known facts about Shakespeare’s early life <ul><li>Shakespeare was born in Stratford-upon-Avon in April 1564 </li></ul><ul><li>He was the son of John Shakespeare, a glover, and Mary Arden, a daughter of the gentry. </li></ul>
<ul><li>Shakespeare was baptized on 26 April 1564 was one of eight children- his brothers being Gilbert, Richard and Edmund and his sisters being Joan( died in infancy), Margaret, Anne, and Joan </li></ul>
Shakespeare’s Education <ul><li>Shakespeare attended the King Edward VI Grammar School in Stratford, which was set up by King Edward VI and was free to all male children in England. </li></ul><ul><li>It is believed that one of Shakespeare’s early plays- The Comedy of Errors was written while he was at this school. </li></ul><ul><li>It is assumed that Shakespeare didn’t receive any University education </li></ul>
The King Edward VI Grammar School, now known as Oaks High School
Marriage <ul><li>On November 29 th 1582, Shakespeare married Anne Hathaway at Temple Grafton. It is an interesting fact that Shakespeare was 18 at the time of his marriage while Hathaway was 26. </li></ul>
<ul><li>On May 20 th 1583, Shakespeare’s first child Susanna was baptized at Stratford. He later got two twins Hamnet and Judith. </li></ul><ul><li>The period from 1585 to 1592 are called Shakespeare’s lost years as there is no historical record of his life of this period. </li></ul><ul><li>There are claims that he worked as a country school teacher during this period but the authenticity hasn’t been verified. </li></ul>
Shakespeare’s theatrical career <ul><li>Most historians believe that by 1592 Shakespeare left Stratford for London to become a playwright. </li></ul><ul><li>By 1594, he became the part-owner of a playing company called Lord Chamberlain’s Men, sponsored by Lord Chamberlain. </li></ul><ul><li>It became so popular that the new Monarch, James I, proclaimed it as the King’s Men. </li></ul>
<ul><li>By 1596 Shakespeare moved to the parish of St. Helen’s Bishopsgate. </li></ul><ul><li>In 1598, he appeared at the top of a list of actors in “Every Man in his Humour”, written by Ben Jonson. Also, his name began to appear on the title pages of his plays, presumably as a selling point. </li></ul>
The cast of Jonson's " Every man in his Humour"
<ul><li>There is a belief that Shakespeare, who was a part owner of his theatre, also acted in some parts of his plays. </li></ul><ul><li>It is said that he acted as Hamlet’s father’s ghost in “Hamlet”, Adam in “As You like it” and the chorus in “Henry V”. </li></ul><ul><li>Shakespeare is believed to have moved to Southwark, across river Thames in 1599. </li></ul>
(Left) Hamlet coverpage (Right) Scene from Henry V
Shakespeare’s death <ul><li>Shakespeare died on April 23 rd 1616, at the age of 52. He was survived by his two daughters, Susanna and Judith. There are no real remaining relatives of Shakespeare, although there are claims that he was the real father of William Davenant, his godson. </li></ul><ul><li>Susanna married Dr John Hall and Shakespeare’s last surviving descendant was their daughter Elizabeth Hall. </li></ul>
<ul><li>Shakespeare is buried in the chancel of Holy Trinity Church in Stratford-upon-Avon. He was given the honor of being buried in the chancel by purchasing a tithe of £440. </li></ul><ul><li>A monument on the wall features a bust of Shakespeare posed in the art of writing. </li></ul><ul><li>The epitaph on his tombstone says- “Good friend , for Jesus sake forbear, To dig the dust enclosed here, Blest here the man that spares these stones and cursed be he who moved my bones </li></ul>
Shakespeare’s Plays <ul><li>Shakespeare wrote 38 plays, 12 dramas and 152 sonnets. </li></ul><ul><li>Shakespeare’s plays have been categorised into 3- Comedies, Histories and Tragedies. </li></ul><ul><li>Some of Shakespeare’s well known comedies are- The Tempest, The Comedy of Errors, The Merchant of Venice, Much Ado about Nothing, A Midsummer Night’s Dream </li></ul>
The cover of "A Midsummer Night's Dream"
<ul><li>Some of Shakespeare’s histories are – King John, Richard II, Henry V, Richard III, Henry VIII. </li></ul><ul><li>Shakespeare’s well known tragedies are – Macbeth, Romeo and Juliet, Julius Caesar, Hamlet, Anthony and Cleopatra. </li></ul>
Speculation about Shakespeare <ul><li>Even though there is little known about Shakespeare, there are lots of controversies regarding the “Bard of Avon” </li></ul><ul><li>The main controversy is regarding the authenticity of Shakespeare writing his plays. There are many arguments put forth suggesting that Shakespeare wasn’t the original writer of his plays, but no proof exists and therefore the claims are disbelieved. </li></ul>
<ul><li>Shakespeare remains an inspiring figure for all generations and it seems like there will not be much known about this great writer. </li></ul>
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