William Shakespeare was born in Stratford-upon-Avon, in England in 1564. While his exact birth date is unknown, it is most often celebrated on April 23,
the feast of St.George. He was the third of seven children born to John and Mary Arden Shakespeare.
Shakespeare's father was a tanner and glove maker. He was also a fairly prominent politicalfigure, being an alderman of Stratford for years, and serving
a term as "high bailiff" (mayor). He died in 1601, leaving little land to William. Not much is known of MaryShakespeare, except that she had a wealthier
family than John.
In 1582 at 18 years of age, Shakespeare married Anne Hathaway, a lady seven or eight years older than he fromShottery, a village a mile from Stratford.
Their first daughter, Susanna, was born in 1583, followed by twins in 1585, Hamnet and Judith. By 1592, Shakespeare was anestablished playwright in London.
The plague kept the theaters closed most of the time, and it was during this time that Shakespeare wrote his earliest sonnets and poems.Shakespeare retired from theatre in 1610 and returned to Stratford. In 1613 the Globe Theatre burned down, but Shakespeare remained quite wealthy and
contributed to the buildingof the new Globe Theatre . Shakespeare died on April 23, 1616 and was buried in the chancel of the Church of the Holy Trinity in
Stratford. A monument to Shakespeare was set upon the north wall of the chancel, with a bust of Shakespeare. The bust and the engraving by Droeshout that
prefixed the First Folio are the only renderings of Shakespearethat are considered to be accurate. In Shakespeare's will, he left most of his property to
Susanna and her daughter, except for his "second-best bed," which he left to his wife.
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