About This Author

William Shakespeare

Shakespeare.jpg
The Chandos portrait

Born

Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire, England

Baptised

26 April 1564

Died

23 April 1616
Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire, England

Resting place

Church of the Holy Trinity, Stratford-upon-Avon

Occupation

  • Playwright
  • poet
  • actor

Years active

c. 1585–1613

Era

  • Elizabethan
  • Jacobean

Movement

English Renaissance

Spouse

Anne Hathaway

Children

  • Susanna Hall
  • Hamnet Shakespeare
  • Judith Quiney

Parents

  • John Shakespeare
  • Mary Arden

Signature

William Shakespeare Signature.svg

William Shakespeare was an English poet, playwright and actor, widely regarded as the greatest writer in the English language and the world's greatest dramatist. He is often called England's national poet and the "Bard of Avon". His extant works, including collaborations, consist of approximately 39 plays, 154 sonnets, two long narrative poems, and a few other verses, some of uncertain authorship. 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 raised in Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire. At the age of 18, he married Anne Hathaway, with whom he had three children: Susanna and twins Hamnet and Judith. Sometime 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. At age 49 , he appears to have retired to Stratford, where he died three years later. Few records of Shakespeare's private life survive; this has stimulated considerable speculation about such matters as his physical appearance, his sexuality, his religious beliefs, and whether the works attributed to him were written by others. Such theories are often criticised for failing to adequately note that few records survive of most commoners of the period.

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Discover William Shakespeare Quotes and Sayings

Consumed with that which it was nourish'd by. - William Shakespeare

Consumed with that which it was nourish'd by.

William Shakespeare

author consumption
How far that little candle throws his beams! So shines a good deed in a naughty world. - William Shakespeare

How far that little candle throws his beams! So shines a good deed in a naughty world.

William Shakespeare

positive
A man loves the meat in his youth that he cannot endure in his age. - William Shakespeare

A man loves the meat in his youth that he cannot endure in his age.

William Shakespeare

age
The golden age is before us, not behind us. - William Shakespeare

The golden age is before us, not behind us.

William Shakespeare

age
There's no art to find the mind's construction in the face. - William Shakespeare

There's no art to find the mind's construction in the face.

William Shakespeare

art
But men are men; the best sometimes forget. - William Shakespeare

But men are men; the best sometimes forget.

William Shakespeare

best men
'Tis best to weigh the enemy more mighty than he seems. - William Shakespeare

'Tis best to weigh the enemy more mighty than he seems.

William Shakespeare

best
Who could refrain that had a heart to love and in that heart courage to make love known? - William Shakespeare

Who could refrain that had a heart to love and in that heart courage to make love known?

William Shakespeare

courage love
Cowards die many times before their deaths the valiant never taste of death but once. - William Shakespeare

Cowards die many times before their deaths the valiant never taste of death but once.

William Shakespeare

death
Death is a fearful thing. - William Shakespeare

Death is a fearful thing.

William Shakespeare

death
The stroke of death is as a lover's pinch, which hurts and is desired. - William Shakespeare

The stroke of death is as a lover's pinch, which hurts and is desired.

William Shakespeare

death
I were better to be eaten to death with a rust than to be scoured to nothing with perpetual motion. - William Shakespeare

I were better to be eaten to death with a rust than to be scoured to nothing with perpetual motion.

William Shakespeare

death
The valiant never taste of death but once. - William Shakespeare

The valiant never taste of death but once.

William Shakespeare

death
I had rather have a fool to make me merry than experience to make me sad and to travel for it too! - William Shakespeare

I had rather have a fool to make me merry than experience to make me sad and to travel for it too!

William Shakespeare

experience sad travel
Now, God be praised, that to believing souls gives light in darkness, comfort in despair. - William Shakespeare

Now, God be praised, that to believing souls gives light in darkness, comfort in despair.

William Shakespeare

faith god
Faith, there hath been many great men that have flattered the people who ne'er loved them. - William Shakespeare

Faith, there hath been many great men that have flattered the people who ne'er loved them.

William Shakespeare

faith great men