He was the greatest writer in the English language and is known around the world. But how much do you really know about William Shakespeare and his life?


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William Shakespeare was a poet and a playwright and is widely regarded as the greatest writer in the English language. He was born in Stratford-upon-Avon, in central England, in 1564 and he died in 1616. His surviving work consists of 38 plays, 154 sonnets and some other poems. He is best known for his plays, which have been translated into every major language and are performed more than those of any other playwright in the world.

When William Shakespeare was 18 years old he married Anne Hathaway, and they had three children. Shakespeare went to London to work as an actor and a writer. In 1599 the Globe Theatre was built in London and it was in this theatre, situated on the banks of the River Thames, that some of Shakespeare’s plays were first performed. In 1613 the theatre was destroyed by a fire. However, a modern reconstruction of the theatre was built near the original site in 1997 so even today you can go to the Globe Theatre to see one of Shakespeare's plays.

Shakespeare’s work is still very popular today. But why do we like these old plays? Perhaps it is because they all contain fantastic stories. His characters suffer bloody battles, deaths by poison, huge family fights, problems between brothers and sisters, problems between parents and children ... The plays are also full of parties, weddings and funerals. They are quite simply action-packed.

Here is a selection of Shakespeare’s plays. Maybe you’ve seen some of them.

The Merchant of Venice

This play is about the idea that people usually get what they deserve in the end, good or bad. Antonio, a businessman, borrows money from Shylock, a money lender. If he doesn’t pay back this money in time, Shylock will cut off a piece of his body. Antonio loses all his business and must pay this terrible price … but is saved by love.


This play is about revenge and also about how difficult it is to take action sometimes, even when it is important. Hamlet’s father is murdered by another man, who then marries Hamlet’s mother. Everybody wants to see Hamlet dead. Hamlet must take revenge, but will he be able to? The famous quotation ‘To be or not to be, that is the question’ comes from this play.

As You Like It

This play is a comedy about romantic love. There is a battle between two evil brothers and two good brothers. People hide in a beautiful forest. They fall in love, women disguise themselves as men, and there are many jokes, songs and games.

Henry V

This is a history play about a famous English king, and a famous battle, Agincourt. We watch the preparations for the battle, the fighting and the results. There are questions in this play: why do men fight? What are wars? Are they glorious or terrible?

Which play would you like to see?


What do you think about Shakespeare? Which of his plays would you most like to see in the theatre?

Average: 3.8 (6 votes)
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Submitted by Fatina123 on Mon, 04/01/2024 - 16:32

I think Shakespeare is a very talented playwright and poet and still will be known for his fantastic plays and poems today. I haven't seen any of Shakespeare's plays , and none of the movies based on Shakespeare's plays. But I would like to watch Hamlet, because it is action packed and full of drama.

Submitted by Fatina123 on Mon, 04/01/2024 - 16:27

I think that Shakespeare is a very talented playwright and poet across the world.

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Submitted by FlowerQueen on Fri, 12/16/2022 - 21:11

I think, Shakespeare will be in 100 years still one of the greatest authors in the world. I heard many things about him, and I guess he was a fantastic person.
I'd like to see Romeo & Julia and Hamlet.

Submitted by MariaAvila on Wed, 10/28/2020 - 19:41

I think that Shaspearke was and still is one of the best romantic poets in history. I would like to see Hamlet
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Submitted by Youjiro on Tue, 03/05/2019 - 08:57

His is genius .It is no doubt.I well known best writer all over the world as well as best seller book.also He is remarkable writer in history.His book teach us age that he survive.

Submitted by shake on Sun, 03/18/2018 - 12:07

The power of the arts help make sense, gain access more directly to the emotions.

Submitted by slmp on Fri, 03/16/2018 - 21:15

Although I haven't really acquainted myself with Shakepeare's plays or sonnets apart from the ones we read at school, I think that Shakespeare is one of the most interesting English writer who can really describe emotions and feelings authentically. When you read his scripts you can almost feel like visiting the era of Shakespeare.
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Submitted by Ugandan_Knuckles on Fri, 03/09/2018 - 15:13

Shakespeare is a genius, he shows in his plays some themes who is still present today, like : Love, Money. Power, How people think in his centuary. We think that he still relevent in our days, because his plays evolves with time, more than that, he teaches us how was the life in his centuary, and how much all those themes evolved. The plays I want to see in a theater, is "Hamlet". It's a really interessting story, because it shows to us, a story about the "wanted" power, how people can do for there ideas.

Submitted by shake on Sun, 03/18/2018 - 11:04

According to me Shakespeare is still relevant 400 years later. Across time, space, and culture his heritage still resonates so deeply today. First, his themes are universal and his plays have been adapted so many times. Second, his language is so imagery that our modern adaptations can make his heritage even more accessible. Finally, the mix of genres and the impression of harmony experienced through nature, despite social constraints, enable to go beyond ancient representations and old black and white schemes. What I appreciate in Romeo and Juliet for example is the progressive physical approach and rising spiritual love conveyed by the sonnet.

In reply to by Ugandan_Knuckles

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