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By grimesj
  • Apr 23, 1564

    Willam Shakespeare was born

    Willam Shakespeare was born
    William Shakespeare is born in Stratford upon Avon to local tanner John and Mary Shakespeare. His actual birthday is unknown but assumed and celebrated today on April the 23rd, just three days before his baptism was recorded in the Parish register of the Holy Trinity Church on April the 26th.
  • Period: Apr 23, 1564 to

    William Shakespeare

  • Apr 23, 1571

    Joined Formal Education

    Joined Formal Education
    Shakespeare is likely to have begun his formal education. By local tradition, children in the Stratford area, entered the local grammar school at age seven
  • May 3, 1575

    Queen Visits

    Queen Visits
    Queen Elizabeth pays a visit to Kenilworth Castle, just a short journey from Stratford. Legend has it that an impressionable eleven year old William saw the Queen’s procession, and recreated it several times later in his historical and dramatic plays.
  • Oct 4, 1582

    Falls In love.

    Falls In love.
    Shakespeare is in love... At age 18, he marries the considerably older Anne Hathaway (26 years old) from Shottery on November the 27th at Temple Grafton, a village just five short miles (8 km) from Stratford.
  • Has a kid

    Has a kid
    Susanna, William and Anne Shakespeare’s first child who lives a full 66 years, is born just five months after Shakespeare and Anne Hathaway’s wedding (May 26th). Illegitimacy was not uncommon in the 1500s
  • Has Twins

    Has Twins
    Shakespeare’s twins, Judith and Hamnet are born, (February 2)Hamnet living only eleven years whilst Judith lived 77.
  • Period: to

    Leaves to join a theatre

    Shakespeare is believed to have left his family in Stratford to join a company of actors as both playwright and performer, starting his career in theatre.
  • Writes First play

    Writes First play
    Shakespeare is believed by most academics to have written his very first play, Henry VI, Part One in this year.
  • Writes more plays

    Writes more plays
    Shakespeare is again believed to have written Henry VI, Part Two and Henry VI, Part III
  • Begins Noticeable

    Begins Noticeable
    Shakespeare begins to be noticed as a force within London theatre; Robert Greene’s Groatworth of Wit famously calls Shakespeare an "upstart crow". He attacks Shakespeare as lacking originality since he borrows ideas from other for his own plays. Academics see this criticism as proof that Shakespeare was in London at this time.
  • Famous Actors

    Famous Actors
    The Lord Chamberlain’s Men, a theatre troupe including distinguished actor Richard Burbage and comic Will Kemp performs with Shakespeare in their group.
  • Writes Hits

    Writes Hits
    A busy year for Shakespeare as he is thought to have composed Richard II performed that very same year, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, thought to be composed for a wedding and the greatest love story of all time, Romeo and Juliet.
  • BIG year

    BIG year
    The Major shareholders of the Lord Chamberlain’s Men lease land from Nicholas Brend, The Globe theatre opening later that same year. Julius Caesar is performed at the Globe Theatre for the first known time on September the 21st according to German tourist Thomas Platter’s diary. John Weever praises Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, The Rape of Lucrece and Venus Adonis in the poem Ad Guglielmum Shakespeare
  • Hamlet

    Shakespeare is thought to have composed arguably his greatest play, Hamlet at this time.
  • Commendation from the king.

    Commendation from the king.
    The Merchant of Venice is performed twice at King James’ Court earning a commendation from the King. King Lear is believed to have been composed in this year and as is Macbeth, the play’s Scottish background and kind portrayal of ancestor Malcolm being intended as a celebration and honoring of King James Scottish ancestry.
  • 21 Year Lease

    21 Year Lease
    The King’s Men take on a twenty-one year lease of London’s first permanently enclosed theatre, the Blackfriars Theatre in this year. Notes on stage directions, suggest The Tempest was penned with a performance at this theatre in mind.
  • Period: to


    The return of the plague forces a closure of all playhouses and theatres
  • Globe Theatre Burns Down.

    Globe Theatre Burns Down.
    The Globe Theatre burns to the ground. The Two Noble Kinsmen is penned. A 1634 entry within the Stationer’s Registry confirms that both William Shakespeare and John Fletcher composed this play.
  • Globe Theatre Reopens

    Globe Theatre Reopens
    The Globe Theatre reopens.

    William dies on April 23rd, his burial being recorded in the Stratford Holy Church Register two days later.