ShakespeareWilliam Shakespeare was a great English playwright, dramatist and poet who livedduring the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries. Shakespeare isconsidered to be the greatest playwright of all time.
No other writer’s playshave been produced so many times or read so widely in so many countries as his.Shakespeare was born to middle class parents. His father, John, was a Stratfordbusinessman. He was a glove maker who owned a leather shop. John Shakespeare wasa well known and respected man in the town. He held several important localgovernmental positions. William Shakespeare’s mother was Mary Arden. Though shewas the daughter of a local farmer, she was related to a family of considerablewealth and social standing.
Mary Arden and John Shakespeare were married in1557. William Shakespeare was born in Stratford in 1564. He was one of eightchildren. The Shakespeare’s were well respected prominent people.
When WilliamShakespeare was about seven years old, he probably began attending the StratfordGrammar School with other boys of his social class. Students went to school yearround attending school for nine hours a day. The teachers were strictdisciplinarians. Though Shakespeare spent long hours at school, his boyhood wasprobably fascinating. Stratford was a lively town and during holidays, it wasknown to put on pageants and many popular shows.
It also held several largefairs during the year. Stratford was a exciting place to live. Stratford alsohad fields and woods surrounding it giving William the opportunity to hunt andtrap small game. The River Avon which ran through the town allowed him to fishalso. Shakespeare’s’ poems and plays show his love of nature and rural lifewhich reflects his childhood. In London, Shakespeare’s career took off. It isbelieved that he may have become well known in London theatrical life by 1592.
By that time, he had joined one of the city’s repertory theater companies. Thesecompanies were made up of a permanent cast of actors who presented differentplays week after week. The companies were commercial organizations that dependedon admission from their audience. Scholars know that Shakespeare belonged to oneof the most popular acting companies in London called The Lord Chamberlain’sMen. Shakespeare was a leading member of the group from 1594 for the rest of hiscareer.
By 1594, at least six of Shakespeare’s plays had been produced. DuringShakespeare’s life, there were two monarchs who ruled England. They were Henrythe eighth and Elizabeth the first. Both were impressed with Shakespeare whichmade his name known. There is evidence that he was a member of a travelingtheater group, and a schoolmaster. In 1594, he became an actor and playwrightfor Lord Chamberlain’s Men. In 1599, he became a part owner of the prosperousGlobe Theater.
He also was a part owner of the Blackfriars Theater as of 1609.Shakespeare retired to Stratford in 1613 where he wrote many of his excellentplays. There are many reasons as to why William Shakespeare is so famous. He isgenerally considered to be both the greatest dramatist the world has ever knownas well as the finest poet who has written in the English language. Many reasonscan be given for Shakespeare’s enormous appeal.
His fame basically is from hisgreat understanding of human nature. He was able to find universal humanqualities and put them in a dramatic situation creating characters that aretimeless. Yet he had the ability to create characters that are highly individualhuman beings. Their struggles in life are universal. Sometimes they aresuccessful and sometimes their lives are full of pain, suffering, and failure.Biographies