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Family and marriage

Shakespeare was born in Stratford, in 1564. His father made gloves and he was elected 'bailiff' of Stratford (like the mayor). Ten years later he was (father) in financial difficulty and lost civic position; in 1592 he had fear of being arrested for debt.

When William was eighteen, he married the 26 year old Anne Hathaway and six months later was born their daughter S 545c22f usanna. Most biographers suspect that Shakespeare regretted his hasty marriage: he lived most of his adult life away from his wife in London, when he was twenty he fathered no more children.

Early life

Shakespeare left school at fifteen and became an apprentice in his father's business. After his marriage he may worked as a teacher.

23 years old: he left Stratford for London, where he became an actor and eventually a playwright. He have abandoned his job and his family for the uncertain career of an actor and quickly managed to sell a play, he knew that he could increase his income by writing more. He first play have been the bloody Titus Andronicus (rape, cannibalism and mutilation).

1592: he was well known both as a writer and actor.

He became a permanent member of the Lord Chamberlain's Men and made an agreement to write two plays a year for them.


Over the next two decades Shakespeare made a fortune: he didn't sell directly his plays, but where his company performed them he made a lot of money, while other players earned about 10 per play, he made at least 200 annually from the theatre (in a good year possibly as much as 500.

He bought two big house: one in Stratford, one in London.


When plague deaths in London rose to more than thirty a day, the theatres would be closed(including the Globe Theatre).

1592-4: he wrote two verse narratives which he dedicated to his patron the Earl of Southampton.

Southampton began his sequence of sonnets in this period too. The sonnets describe the love of the poet for this youth, and his tormented passion for a faithless dark lady who has never been identified.

Early and middle period

He wrote a lot of romantic comedies and plays whit the quintessential tragedy of young love.

The comedies of this period have a bitter cynicism and a tone of disgust for physical love. He had obsession with sickness and disgust for sexual relations, because he was suffering from venereal disease pessimism of Shakespeare (political fall of Southampton and the tormented love affair that he describes in his sonnets.

Late plays

1608: he may have moved back to Stratford and another outbreak of plague closed the theatres for a time. From this date on he made one plays a year; the plays of this period are full of images of country life.

Retirement and death

1607: Shakespeare's daughter Susanna married John Hall

1616: his younger daughter Judith married Thomas Quiney

Two months later he was accused of fornication and carnal copulation with another woman


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