Happy 450th Birthday William Shakespeare!

The “Willy” most of us don’t know. Today he’d be a prolific world class blogger for certain.

William Shakespeare

Everyone knows of him, the famous playwright who wrote timeless words.

But the real man behind the words – a different story. Looking at historical documents dated no later than 1635 (The Tudor English kept everything documented) and written comments of people who knew him, he was a “gentle” man who loved life and people. He was warm, friendly, and outgoing. He was also practical and highly intelligent!

He left his town, Stratford, for the city of London. He left to become an actor.

He came to London during a time of great change in the world. Books were now available to the middle class (this was exciting and relatively new). In addition to books, Shakespeare’s London offered fresh and unique information and inspiration – people of many cultures from other lands – arriving daily.

It is easy to imagine that Shakespeare watched and learned from them all, crafting his own style of writing. A drastic change in how authors of that time period were influenced! Huge!

Much of his audience were gentlemen apprentices (who had also come to the city to earn their fortune) or (this was a surprise to me) the women of London.

The Elizabethan women had far more freedom and they took advantage of it. They were intelligent, curious, and playful – like their Queen.

Shakespeare knew this. He knew them. Again, one can imagine him being on stage viewing the varying emotions of those in the audience, especially the women. In one of his surviving epilogue he states …“If they smile and say ‘twill do” he knew the play would be a success.

These were the audience he knew and could relate to – and his words? The particular words he wrote … they were crafted for his fellow actors. He knew and felt what was needed (as an actor himself) to get the emotions out to the audience.

He used no rule books for the proper way to write. His education had been gathered from the many peoples and cultures around him during a time of great change! The Willy…you never knew!

Think about the many similarities happening today in the blogging world. A climate of change with merging cultures reaching out to one another sharing experiences and information. Shakespeare would have fit right in.

The Written Word – Yours?

So think on this the next time you post your thoughts, a photograph, a video, fiction writing or other. Who knows what influence you may be giving to future generations? Something to think on!


Thanks for stopping by, I hope your day is filled with discovery.


22 thoughts on “Happy 450th Birthday William Shakespeare!

  1. Great post Penny! Two books you’d enjoy, both fictions about Shakespeare’s life:
    Anthony Burgess “Nothing Like the Sun”
    Christopher Rush: “Will”

    Like you, I worship at Shakespeare’s shrine. —Jadi

  2. Interesting about Wills. I had to read one in German but didn’t like it and my children both had to read some in school. I have been to Stratford and visited his house/museum, which was very interesting too. I knew the lady in charge of the Stratford Theatre and she showed me around behind the scenes with all the swords they used etc.. That was long time ago though, she was also German. Stratford is actually a lovely town and well worth a visit. Thanks for reminding us about him. Wishing you a good rest of the week., Penny!

    • Hi Ute. My pleasure to share some insights into the man behind the words. I’ll bet visiting his house/museum was great fun. I’d love to visit Stratford. May you also have a very pleasant rest of your week also. Ute! xo

    • Hi Horty! Thanks a bunch. I’m kind of a Shakespeare nut. I have several very old nonfiction books (100+years) as well as a few written within the last 50 years, all about Shakespeare, his life, London and so on. I even have a book written by (of all people) Isaac Asimov with his personal interpretation of Shakespeare’s works. Quite a trip as Asimov, a professor of biochemistry was/is a very well known science fiction writer. Fascinating stuff to see the wide and diverse group of people Shakespeare has influenced and continues to influence. All because he was in tune with all the cultures with whom he came into contact. 🙂

  3. William Shakespeare walks into an inn, and the innkeeper says “You’re bard!”

    My year was one of the few that did not do Shakespeare at school so I never read any of his books, and I have not seen any of his plays or films. Only the Romeo and Juliet with DiCaprio. And what we saw on Dr Who heh. I have been past the Globe theatre though – the new one as they let off a cannon or firework in the original and cooked it.

    He was a very gifted man.

    • Hi Alastair. Yes he was. He saw change and embraced it. With his gift for words and reaching out to various cultures to learn their stories he expanded awareness of all – through his plays. He still does. Amazing, huh!

      • It is. I wonder what he would have been like had he known the effect he would have had on future generations. I wonder if he would have been like Zefram Cochrane in Star Trek VIII and tried to run from his destiny

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