William Shakespeare: A Legendary Author Essay

1131 words - 5 pages

William Shakespeare’s intellectual use of the English language is what brought him prosperity throughout his lifetime, and what brings us to tears and laughter in the modern world. The life of Shakespeare is of great importance to English literature because of his many contributions including poetry, stories, and plays. However, many people do not know that he also owned a business. “William Shakespeare was a professional actor, a businessman, and a playwright. Today, nearly four hundred years after his death his plays are still performed” (Greenhill and Wignall 4).
William’s father, John Shakespeare married Mary Arden in the year 1557. “John and Mary Shakespeare’s first two children, Joan ...view middle of the document...

When William Shakespeare was eighteen years of age, he married Anne Hathaway. “In the 1500s, the average age when men married was between 24 and 28.” (Greenhill and Wignall 10). Their marriage was arranged very quickly because they obtained a special license from the Bishop of Worcester on November 27, 1582. This special license allowed them to marry without the proper three weeks notice. “There was a good reason for their speedy marriage. An entry in the Stratford parish registers says that Susanna daughter to William Shakespeare was baptized on May 26, 1583. Anne must have been three months pregnant when they married” (Greenhill and Wignall 11). After the Shakespeare’s had Susanna , they had twins Hamnet and Judith. When Hamnet was born, William was most likely pleased that the Shakespeare name would continue. However, “Hamnet died at the age of eleven” (Greenhill and Wignall 11). One of William Shakespeare’s famous plays Hamlet was probably written in 1600 around four years after his son’s death. “It is perhaps not too unreasonable to suppose that when Shakespeare was writing Hamlet , he was painfully aware of the loss of his own son, Hamnet” (Greenhill and Wignall 11). William Shakespeare died on April 23, 1616. The cause of his death remains a mystery. However, since his death, many theories about Shakespeare’s life and death have stirred the modern population.
“It should not be forgotten that Shakespeare was both actor and playwright” (Ludowyk 22) William Shakespeare wrote a total of thirty seven plays. Along with tragedies he also wrote comedies and historical plays. “Most academics and readers alike would agree that Hamlet, Romeo and Juliet, The Merchant of Venice, A Midsummer’s Night’s Dream, King Henry V, King Lear, Macbeth, Othello and Antony and Cleopatra are amongst Shakespeare’s most recognizable and hence most popular plays” (Shakespeare FAQ). Hamlet “engrossed playgoers, thrilled readers, and challenged actors more so than any other play” (Shakespeare’s Plays). In the play “Hamlet”, Prince Hamlet devotes himself to avenging his father’s death, but he enters into a deep melancholy and apparent madness. In Shakespeare’s play “Romeo and Juliet”, two young star crossed lovers’ deaths ultimately reconcile their family feuds. It is sometimes forgotten that William Shakespeare also wrote poetry. It is known that Shakespeare wrote one hundred and fifty four sonnets. Well known to English Literature, his most popular sonnet, “Shall I Compare Thee to a Summer’s Day” has...

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