William Shakespeare

Playwright, Author

1564 – 1616


Who was William Shakespeare?

William Shakespeare was an English poet and playwright, widely regarded as the greatest writer in the English language and the world's pre-eminent dramatist. He is often called England's national poet and the "Bard of Avon". His extant works, including some collaborations, consist of about 38 plays, 154 sonnets, two long narrative poems, and a few other verses, the authorship of some of which is uncertain. His plays have been translated into every major living language and are performed more often than those of any other playwright.

Shakespeare was born and brought up in Stratford-upon-Avon. At the age of 18, he married Anne Hathaway, with whom he had three children: Susanna, and twins Hamnet and Judith. Between 1585 and 1592, he began a successful career in London as an actor, writer, and part-owner of a playing company called the Lord Chamberlain's Men, later known as the King's Men. He appears to have retired to Stratford around 1613 at age 49, where he died three years later. Few records of Shakespeare's private life survive, and there has been considerable speculation about such matters as his physical appearance, sexuality, religious beliefs, and whether the works attributed to him were written by others.

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Famous Quotes:

  • ...O brave new world, That has such people in't!
  • First thing we do, let's kill all the lawyers.
  • Our doubts are traitors, and make us lose the good we oft might win, by fearing to attempt.
  • The man that hath no music in himself, nor is not moved with concord of sweet sounds, is fit for treasons, stratagems, and spoils. The motions of his spirit are dull as night, and his affections dark as Erebus. Let no such man be trusted.
  • Time hath a wallet at his back, wherein he puts. Alms for oblivion, a great-sized monster of ingratitudes.
  • No legacy is so rich as honesty.
  • Cowards die a thousand deaths. The valiant taste of death but once.
  • Strive mightily, but eat and drink as friends.
  • It is the bright day that brings forth the adder, and that craves wary walking.
  • For we which now behold these present days have eyes to wonder, but lack tongues to praise.

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Apr 26, 1564
Also known as
  • Shakespeare
  • The Bard
  • Shaxper
  • Shaksper
  • Shakspere
  • The Bard of Avon
  • William Shakespare
  • Will Shakespeare
  • William 'Budd' Shakespeare
  • Budd
  • Church of England
  • English people
  • England
  • King Edward VI School, Stratford-upon-Avon
Lived in
  • Stratford-upon-Avon
    (1564 - 1616)
Apr 23, 1616
Resting place
Church of the Holy Trinity, Stratford-upon-Avon

on July 23, 2013


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