Category Archives: Shakespeare’s World

Documenting Shakespeare

A couple of weeks ago I acquired, from a second hand book dealer, a copy of a book I have long coveted, Samuel Schoenbaum’s William Shakespeare: a Documentary Life. This book was published in 1975 and when I began work … Continue reading

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Shakespeare and the Welsh “Upon St Davy’s day”

Every first of March the Welsh celebrate St David’s Day. Shakespeare was well aware of this: in Henry V the Welsh Captain Fluellen says to the King: I do believe your majesty takes no scorn To wear a leek upon … Continue reading

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Shakespeare’s world in maps

For the next four months the subject of the UK’s relationship with Europe will be at the forefront of our minds. Shortly after the Prime Minister announced that an agreement had been reached for reform to the EU, the Folger … Continue reading

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Scribbled forms on vellum: a living link with the past

Three cheers for Paul Wright, the Manager of William Cowley, interviewed on the Today programme on Monday 15 February (2hrs 49 mins in), about the decision to continue to print UK laws on vellum rather than move to archival paper. … Continue reading

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Shakespeare’s family and the “lost years”

In the last week or so I’ve been hearing about, and reading about, Shakespeare’s parents, who they were, what they were like, and how his family life might have impacted on his career. In her afterword to the new book … Continue reading

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His most potent art: the library of John Dee

A new exhibition has just opened in London that explains more about one of the most intriguing people in Elizabethan London, John Dee. The Royal College of Physicians in Regents Park is hosting Scholar, courtier, magician: the lost library of … Continue reading

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Looking at the First Folio in 2016

It’s still seven years until the four hundredth anniversary of the publication of the First Folio, arguably the most important book in the English language. But this year, when Shakespeare’s achievement is being celebrated, the first collected edition of his … Continue reading

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Shakespeare online for 2016

Into the new year it’s time for starting something afresh. With this being such a big year for Shakespeare, there are several online courses beginning soon that aim to increase participants’ interest in and knowledge of Shakespeare, and I’ve picked … Continue reading

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Deciphering handwriting in Shakespeare’s world

We only have a few examples of Shakespeare’s handwriting, but those that we have suggest that he wasn’t a particularly neat writer. I always like that section in Hamlet where the Prince explains how he had to remember his lessons … Continue reading

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Following the Shakespeare Trail

The weather now, in mid-December, is as dreary as Shakespeare describes at the end of Love’s Labour’s Lost. Ways are truly foul and there is little incentive to get anywhere on foot, even though that’s always my favourite method of exploring … Continue reading

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