Happy Birthday William!
Shakespeare that is.
Fun Shakespeare facts:
- Nobody knows Shakespeare’s true birthday. The closest we can come is the date of his baptism on April the 26th, 1564. By tradition and guesswork, William is assumed to have been born three days earlier on April the 23rd, a date now commonly used to celebrate the famous Bard’s birthday.
- Shakespeare, one of literature’s greatest figures, never attended university. (Unschoolers take courage!)
- The Bard is believed to have started writing the first of his 154 sonnets in 1593 at age 29.
- William never published any of his plays. We read his plays today only because his fellow actors John Hemminges and Henry Condell, posthumously recorded his work as a dedication to their fellow actor in 1623, publishing 36 of William’s plays. This collection known as The First Folio is the source from which all published Shakespeare books are derived and is an important proof that he authored his plays.
- As an actor performing his own plays, William performed before Queen Elizabeth I and later before James I who was an enthusiastic patron of his work.
Shakespeare is said to have coined more than 1,700 words in his lifetime many of which we use today. To read a list of words, go here.
May is Shakespeare month for Brave Writer. Be sure to sign up for the One Thing Workshop: Shakespeare if you want a little hand-holding and joy in discovering the Bard with your kids.
Check out Shakespearegeek for more fun with Will.
You can Talk like Shakespeare too!