William Shakespeare (April 21, 1564–April 23, 1616) was an English author who wrote 38 plays and also many poems in his lifetime. He lived in Stratford-upon-Avon, in Warwickshire, England. His plays are still performed today. He is often quoted in modern writing.
He became an actor in 1594 in the Lord Chamberlain's Men production house.
His plays are of different kinds, or genres. There are histories, tragedies and comedies. These plays are among the best known in English literature and are studied in schools around the world. Shakespeare wrote his works between about 1590 and 1613.
Shakespeare has been credited for adding new words and phrases to the English language and for making some words more popular.
Not a lot of information is known about Shakespeare's life. He was married to Anne Hathaway, a woman eight years older than he was. He had three children, Susanna (married John Hall), Hamnet Shakespeare (died at the age of 11 due to unknown reasons) and Judith (married to Thomas Quiney). By 1592 he had become an actor and was becoming well known as a writer of plays. At the time of his death in 1616, only some of his plays had been published in single editions. The reason for this is unknown. The plays were collected and published in 1623, six years after he died. His friends had realized that other people were publishing inaccurate copies of the plays.
There is proof that people in Shakespeare's time thought highly of him. After his death, even his rival Ben Jonson said,
"Triumph, my Britain, thou hast one to show,To whom all scenes of Europe homage owe.He was not of an age, but for all time!"
He was involved in the building of the Globe Theatre in 1599.
Marriage and Children
Although Shakespeare married to a woman and fathered three children, Suzanne, Hamnet and Judith, people have debated his sexuality. Some people, such as Professor Peter Holland of the Shakespeare Institute at Birmingham University, have argued that Shakespeare was possibly bisexual because of some of the sonnets he wrote that were directed toward young men.
Who wrote "Shakespeare"?
About 150 years after Shakespeare died, some writers began to say that the work called "Shakespeare" were not really written by William Shakespeare. They had various reasons for saying this. For example, the person who wrote "Shakespeare" knew a lot about other countries (especially Italy), but William Shakespeare never left England. Several other writers of "Shakespeare" have been suggested, such as Francis Bacon, Christopher Marlowe, and Edward de Vere, 17th Earl of Oxford. Most scholars believe that William Shakespeare did write the works that bear his name, but the idea that someone else "wrote Shakespeare" is still often talked about.