Shakespeare By Mackenzie Cox

Thesis: Shakespeare influenced the world through his early life, his plays, and his career.

Early Life

Quote #1: "William Shakespeare was born in the small market town of Stratford-upon-Avon in 1564, the third of eight children" (Lander).

Commentary: By being one of eight children in a family, Shakespeare could have possibly had his sights on difference and a way to express himself other than as another child from the same family. Even now, if history is checked, it can be seen that children of the same family tend to get out-shined and buried beneath their more "special" sibling, only to gain one line to mark that they existed, but are still forgotten.

Quote #2: "William attended grammar school, where he studied Latin grammar, Latin literature, and rhetoric" (Anderson).

Commentary: By doing this, Shakespeare was able to read very famous Latin authors' works to help inspire him. Not only this, but the literature in the language could have boosted his vocabulary and could have helped him in learning about his own language as well.

Quote #3: "At the age of eighteen, he married Anne Hathaway, who was eight years older than he was" (Anderson).

Commentary:

During this time, age differences did not matter. Also, sometimes, marriage was done to gift the child or the parents of the child a higher social ranking.

Plays

Quote #4: "Shakespeare’s masterpieces during this period include the comedies Much Ado About Nothing and Twelfth Night; the history Henry V;and the tragedies Antony and Cleopatra, Hamlet, Julius Caesar, King Lear, Macbeth, and Othello" (Lander).

Commentary: These are some of Shakespeare's most famous plays. Well known ones that are still read in schools today include Romeo and Juliet, Hamlet, a Midsummer's Night Dream, Macbeth, and Othello.

Quote #5: "The chronology of Shakespeare's plays is uncertain, but a reasonable approximation of their order can be inferred from dates of publication, references in contemporary writings, allusions in the plays to contemporary events, thematic relationships, and metrical and stylistic comparisons" ("William").

Commentary: No one knows when Shakespeare wrote all of his plays. However the dates can be estimated and attempted to be put in order.

Quote #6: "Hamlet is one of the most psychologically powerful dramas ever written" ("Hamlet").

Commentary: This is one of Shakespeare's most famous tragedies. As dark as it may be, it spins a fine tale of revenge, greed, and depression, the main character of the story being Hamlet.

Quote #7: "Othello differs from most of Shakespeare's other tragedies because it does not deal with public affairs and royalty" ("Othello").

Commentary: Another one of Shakespeare's most famous tragedies. However, Othello is straightforward and does not take too much thought to comprehend. This story deals personal affairs, love, and hatred.

Quote #8: "In this play, he also created perhaps his greatest gallery of characters" ("Hamlet").

Commentary: With these amazing and different characters, Shakespeare adds depth and dimension to his story. Not only was he able to create some of the best characters in history, but he was also able to write an entrancing and captivating story that pulls the viewer or the reader into a world and into the problems of those characters.

Career

Quote #9: "...by 1592, Shakespeare had already become an actor and a playwright" (Anderson).

Commentary: At a fairly young age, Shakespeare was already on the course of becoming one of the most famous playwrights. This would then continue for years on end, where his plays were in high demand.

Quote #10: "By 1592, Shakespeare apparently attracted the hostile attention of a jealous rival. Robert Greene was a university-trained writer who was among the first to attempt to make a career of writing for the stage and the commercial press" (Lander).

Commentary: It is not well known that Shakespeare did have a "rival" of sorts. By Shakespeare soaring through the ranks of literature, he was bound to make jealous rivals along the way.

Works Cited

Anderson, Robert. “William Shakespeare’s Life.” Holt Literature & Language Arts: Mastering the California Standards: Reading, Writing, Listening, Speaking, by G. Kylene Beers et al., Austin, Holt, Rinehart & Winston, 2003, pp. 776-77.

“Hamlet.” World Book Advanced. World Book, 2016. Web. 29 Nov. 2016.

Lander, Jesse M. “Shakespeare, William.” World Book Advanced. World Book, 2016. Web. 17 Nov. 2016.

“Othello.” World Book Advanced. World Book, 2016. Web. 29 Nov. 2016.

“William Shakespeare.” Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6Th Edition (2016): 1-4. History Reference Center. Web. 18 Nov. 2016.

Credits:

Created with images by InspiredImages - "stratford-upon-avon avon warwickshire" • tonynetone - "William Shakespeare" • WikiImages - "william shakespeare hamlet poster" • marybettiniblank - "london globe theatre theater" • KJGarbutt - "Shakespeare" • summonedbyfells - "SHAKESPEARE'S BIRTHPLACE MUSEUM"

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