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William Shakespeare What you need to know for Mr. Johnson’s class before reading Romeo & Juliet Shakespeare is probably the greatest playwright of all time! He wrote 37 plays and 154 sonnets and other poems too. Shakespeare's works have been translated into every major living language, and his plays are continually performed all around the world. In addition, many quotations from his plays have passed into everyday usage in English and other languages. Over the years, many people have speculated about Shakespeare's life, raising questions about his sexuality, religious affiliation, and the authorship of his works. The beginning Shakespeare was born in Stratford-upon-Avon on April 23, 1564. At least we think so!! His parents were John Shakespeare, a successful glover Snitterfield, and of Mary Arden. We know that the King’s New Grammar School taught boys basic reading and writing. We assume William attended this school since it existed to educate the sons of Stratford but we have no definite proof. Likewise a lack of evidence suggests that William, whose works are studied universally at Universities, never attended one himself! The house on Henley Street This is where Will was born and raised. Anne Hathaway At 18 years old, Will marries Anne Hathaway, his pregnant girlfriend 8 years his senior. She is 26. No, that’s not really the Anne Will married, but maybe it will help you remember her. William and Anne had three children together. The first was Susana, then twins, but one of the twins, Hamnet, died at 11. Will was kind of a jerk to his wife. He left them for many, many years to work in London. And when he died, he only left Anne “his second best bed.” Will’s England http://www.pbs.org/shakespeare/locations /location153.html Conditions in London-BAD! Thames River polluted with raw sewage Trees used up for fuel Poverty Personal hygiene/health Bathing considered dangerous Body odor strong Childhood diseases Children often died before 5 years Small Pox Bubonic Plague Living Conditions No QuickTime™ and a GIF dec ompres sor are needed to s ee this pic ture. running water Chamber Pots Open Sewers Crowded Clothes One set used all year long, rarely washed Underclothing slept in, infrequently changed Clothes handed down from rich to poor QuickTime™ and a Photo - JPEG decompressor are needed to see this picture. Theater in London Performed in courtyards of inns The Theater-first public theater-1576 Daytime/open air Limited set design Relied on music, sound, costumes, props and great description The Globe Built in 1599 Across the Thames- “Wrong side of town” King’s Players - Shakespeare’s company Penny admission Actors All men Female parts played by young boys No actual kissing or hugging on stage The groundling Poor audience member Stood around stage in “the pit” Women not allowed (had to dress up as men to attend) Threw rotten vegetables at bad performances “Romeo and Juliet” Tragedy Written in 1595 Set in Verona, Italy Themes: parental control/rebellious teens; fate/freewill; impulsive behavior/self-control QuickTime™ and a GIF decompressor are needed to see this picture. Play’s source Borrowed from a poem by Brooke1562 Poem found in French translation by Brooke Shakespeare gave story new life and beauty QuickTime™ and a GIF decompressor are needed to see t his picture.