Essay about Shakespeare Notes

Submitted By kmarziali
Words: 600
Pages: 3

William Shakespeare
English poet & playwright, famous for comedies, tragedies, historical plays and sonnets. Most well-known author in English literature. EARLY YEARS  Probably born April 23rd 1564 (no one knows his true birthday) in Stratford-upon-Avon in England  He lived and wrote during a period of time known as the Elizabethan Era, when Queen Elizabeth I ruled England.  He attended Grammar school to study arithmetic, geometry, music, astronomy, and Latin (international language in Europe) from Mon – Sat., 6 or 7 am to 5 or 6 pm, with a 2 hour break mid-day  Shakespeare never attended Univeristy (College). FAMILY  At the age of 18 he married Anne Hathaway, 26. He and Anne eventually had 3 children, including twins.  He did not stay in Stratford; he moved to London and only visited his family about once a year WORK  In London, he worked as an actor, playwright, poet, producer and theatre owner.  In his lifetime he wrote a total of 37 plays  He created a theatre group first known as the Chamberlain’s Men and later changed to the King’s Men, named for King James I of England. The new title made him very popular with the king and Shakespeare made many court appearances  Outbreaks of the plague (Black Death) occasionally closed down everything in London. When the theatres closed, Shakespeare wrote poetry, including 154 sonnets  He never sought to get his work published; after he died his friends published a complete collection of his plays, known as the First Folio. GLOBE THEATRE  Most famous playhouse of all time and site of the performances for Shakespeare’s plays  Large circular outdoor theatre with 3 stories and a small, partially covered thatched roof, made of straw  This was before electricity, so play were performed during the day (natural light from 2 pm – 4 pm)  No backdrops, no lighting, few costumes and props  Viewers had to use their imagination; in an age before TV or radio, they relied on language and listened carefully  People who stood around the stage (on the ground) were called “groundlings”  Patrons paid a penny to enter (approximately $1.75 today); for an additional penny, you could sit in the balcony.  Shakespeare’s most famous plays, such as Hamlet, Macbeth, Romeo & Juliet, and King Lear were