Shakespeare is universally regarded as a great dramatist in English Literature. Here we explore the short biographical notes on the legend in English Language.
Shakespeare was born at Stratford –upon –Avon, Warwickshire in England. His birth date is unknown, but he was baptised on April, 1564. He lived in both Elizabethan and Jacobean era. He is often referred as England’s national poet. He is called as “Bard of Avon”. He married the 26 year old Anne Hathaway at the age of 18. It is unidentified why he visited London after his children’s birth. But several of his plays were on London Stage in 1592. Sources say that he initially started working as an usher in theatres. Gradually, he got to act in the plays and then he became a successful playwright among the people. Although Shakespeare didn’t study much, he excelled in theatre than other contemporaries like University Wits. He died on 23rd April, 1616 at the age of 52.
Shakespeare wrote 36 plays consisted of Histories, Tragedies, Comedies and Tragic Comedies. He got Richard III and the three parts of Henry VI to stage in the early 1590s during the fashion for Historical dramas. Then he tried his hands in comedies like The Comedy of Errors. He is known for his four plays: Othello, Macbeth, King Lear and Hamlet. His popularity and his fame lies in his employing of universal theme. His plays are considered ‘Universal’ because of the common characters, situations and plot that are relevant to every other side of the globe. He was first person to introduce the Tragic-Comedy. He was the member of King’s Chamberlain group. After his huge success in this field, he bought The Globe theatre. During his olden days, it is criticised that his plays were not good enough as his plays before.
He wrote 154 sonnets and 2 narrative poems. During the spread of plague in London, the theatres were closed. So, he wrote poems. The poems, Venus and Adonis and The Rape of Lucrece were dedicated to Henry Wriothesley, Earl of Southampton. The sonnets were published in 1609. The sonnets are speculated to dedicate to a married dark lady and a fair young man for a conflicted love. Wordsworth said that with the sonnets “Shakespeare unlocked his heart”. The later 1609 edition was dedicated to “Mr. W.H.”. These Sonnets are believed to be the meditation on nature of love, sexual passion, procreation and time.
Life of Speculations:
Several years after the death of Shakespeare, speculations began to be expressed on his authorship, religion, sexuality and portraiture. Many of his plot lines are said to be an inspiration from Raphael Holinshed’s The Chronicles of England, Scotland and Ireland, Giovanni Boccaccio, and many other French and Latin sources. It is speculated that sonnets are may be autobiographical which points to the evidence of his being gay.
It is widely regarded that his works are Universal. It is in this acceptance of life in its totality that we trace one of the clues to Shakespeare’s Universality. His plays contains emotions and issues that appear in everyday life. His characters are natural and depicts the much known characteristics of everyone. The play Macbeth is about cupidity, Hamlet is about procrastination, twelfth night is about triangle love, and etc,. Thus, his plays are universal and getting humungous success over the period of many years.
Some of His Invented Words and Phrases:
1. All that glitters is not gold (The Merchant of Venice)
2. Bag and Baggage (As You Like It)
3. Break the Ice (The Taming of the Shrew)
4. Brevity is the soul of wit (Hamlet)
5. Love is Blind (Merchant of Venice)
6. Accommodation (Othello)
7. Cold hearted (Antony and Cleopatra)
8. Dauntless (Macbeth)
9. Vulnerable (Macbeth)
10. Zany (Love’s Labour Lost)