Shakespeare Andrew smith p.1

Thesis: Shakespeare made an impact on the world through his works, life, and language
Quote 1: "With the other tragedies King Lear, Macbeth, and Othello, Hamlet stands out among Shakespeare's finest work and is regarded by many as his greatest play and one of the world's great dramas" (Hamlet). Shakespeare wrote many plays, and these helped him to grow and become the popular writer that he is known as today.
"From mid-1592 to 1594, London authorities frequently closed the theaters because of repeated outbreaks of plague. Without the income provided by acting and playwriting, Shakespeare turned to poetry. In 1593, Venus and Adonis became the first of Shakespeare’s works to be published… Venus and Adonis proved to be extremely popular and was reprinted at least 15 times in Shakespeare’s lifetime" (Lander). Shakespeare’s poetry was extremely popular and continues to be read and republished today.
"Despite their imitative nature and many other faults, Shakespeare’s early plays, notably Henry VI, were popular onstage, but his greatest early popularity came from two long narrative poems, Venus and Adonis (1593) and The Rape of Lucrece (1594)” (Branam). Shakespeare became most popular early on for 2 poems that he wrote. His poems helped him to become more popular, and showed that he was the great writer that he was.
"Shakespeare handled the complicated plot of Hamlet brilliantly. In this play, he also created perhaps his greatest gallery of characters. The role of Hamlet, in particular, is considered one of the theater's greatest acting challenges. The deep conflict within Hamlet as he is torn between the demands of his emotions and the hesitant skepticism of his mind is revealed in several famous and eloquent soliloquies” (Hamlet). Shakespeare was probably one if not the only person who could have written Hamlet as well as he did. He created amazing characters with deep emotions for Hamlet. It is still widely viewed today.

“Beginning at about the age of 7, William probably attended the Stratford grammar school with other boys of his social class...The students chiefly studied Latin, the language of ancient Rome. Knowledge of Latin was necessary for a career in medicine, law, or the church. In addition, the ability to read Latin was considered a sign of an educated person. Young Shakespeare may have read such outstanding ancient Roman authors as Cicero, Ovid, Plautus, Seneca, Terence, and Virgil” (Lander).

Commentary: Shakespeare probably would not have been able to write his plays and poems if he did not attend this school. The school helped to lead him into the playwright that he became.

"By 1608, when his productivity dropped to one play per year, Shakespeare may have spent part of each year in Stratford-upon-Avon. In 1607, his elder daughter had married John Hall, the local physician, and in 1608, with the birth of their daughter, Elizabeth, Shakespeare became a grandfather. Around 1613, he retired completely to Stratford-upon-Avon" (Branam). If Shakespeare had not retired when he did, he may have made some more plays or poems that could have influenced the world even more than his works already have.
"All we know is that sometime between 1585 and 1592 Shakespeare became involved in London’s theater world.... Within a few years Shakespeare was among the players in the Lord Chamberlain’s company" (Ganes). If Shakespeare had not moved to London and became involved in the London theater, he probably would not have made any of his plays o poems at all, and would have carried out an ordinary life.
"Between 1594 and 1608, Kermode argues, the language of Shakespeare’s plays was transformed, acquiring a new complexity that arose out of the playwright’s increasingly successful attempts to represent dramatically the excitement and confusion of thought under stress” (Trotter). Shakespeare’s language changed and became more complex, which may have led to his plays becoming as popular and widely viewed as they were.
“Shakespeare’s English history plays, most of them composed in the mid-1590’s, are heavily dependent upon the use of such figures, albeit a more refined use than one ordinarily finds in other plays of the period. Even in Richard II (pr. c. 1595-1596), still one of Shakespeare’s most celebrated and studied dramas, one finds the speeches dominated by ornamentation of classical origin” (Trotter). Some of Shakespeare’s first plays did not use his traditional writing style, but rather more traditional techniques. If he did not changed the way he wrote, his plays and poems may have been more repetitive, and may have taken away from his influence.
“When you flick through a Shakespeare play, you immediately notice the different ways in which the language is set out on the page. The majority of all but a few plays is written in verse, but a significant amount of each is written in prose. Prose, broadly speaking, is any sort of writing which is not poetry” (McEvoy). Shakespeare wrote mainly in verse, but also wrote a lot in prose, which led to his unique writing style. If he did not write like that, his plays may have sounded much different than they do.

Works Cited

Branam, Harold. “William Shakespeare.” Salem Press Biographical Encyclopedia. EBSCO, Accessed 4 Dec. 2016.

Ganes, Barry. Biography of William Shakespeare. EBSCO eBook Collection, Accessed 4 Dec. 2016.

Lander, Jesse M., Ph.D. “Shakespeare, William.” World Book. World Book Advanced, Accessed 4 Dec. 2016.

McEvoy, Sean. Shakespeare, the Basics. Taylor & Francis Ltd / Books, 2000. EBSCO eBook Collection, Accessed 4 Dec. 2016.

Trotter, Jack. Shakespeare’s Language. Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2000. EBSCO eBook Collection, Accessed 4 Dec. 2016.

World Book Advanced. “Hamlet.” World Book. World Book Advanced, Accessed 4 Dec. 2016.


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