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About William Shakespeare


Few authors can match William Shakespeare for broad appeal. For centuries he has

entertained readers and theatregoers, helping us see our commonalities and revealing our humanness.

The themes of his love stories, such as Romeo and Juliet, continue to break hearts in the 21st century,

though they were written centuries ago. Teenagers still memorize his lines. His works are translated worldwide. So why does Shakespeare stand out so far among his contemporaries? Who was he exactly?

One of the first questions you might ask about William Shakespeare is when was he was born and how  we know that fact. The parish register of Holy Trinity Church in Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire, shows that he was baptized there on April 26, 1564; his birthday is traditionally celebrated on April 23. John Shakespeare, William’s father, had his business. He was a glove maker by trade, a very good business to be in the 1570’s.  His wife, Mary Arden, of Wilmcote, Warwickshire,

came from an ancient family and was the heiress to some land. Stratford

had a grammar school of good quality. Shakespeare's education would

consist mostly of Latin studies—learning to read, write, and speak the

language fairly well and studying some of the Classical historians,

moralists, and poets. But Shakespeare did not go on to the university.

Instead, at age 18 he married Anne Hathaway, who was 26.

They had three children: a daughter, Susanna, and twins, Hamnet

and Judith. Hamnet, Shakespeare's only son, died when he was eleven years old.

How and why Shakespeare went to London, is not known. There are lots of stories about this. Basically the last record of Shakespeare in Stratford is in 1585, and the first record of him in London is in 1592. Those years are usually referred to as the lost years, the years we don’t know what Shakespeare was doing. We only know that in 1592 Shakespeare is recorded in connection with the theatre in London. How his career in the theatre began is unclear, but from 1594 onward he was an important member of the Lord Chamberlain's company of players, later known as the King's Men. For 20 years Shakespeare devoted himself to his art, writing more than a million words of poetic drama of the highest quality. He wrote 38 plays, 154 sonnets, and 2 epic narrative poems. According to the Oxford English Dictionary Shakespeare introduced nearly 3,000 words into the English language. He retired to Stratford around 1613 at age 49, where he died three years later.











Quotes from Shakespeare


1) “To be or not to be: that is the question.” (Hamlet)

  • Быть или не быть: вот в чем вопрос.

2) “All the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players.” (As You Like It)

  • Весь мир театр. В нем женщины, мужчины – все актеры.

3) “Have more than you show, speak less than you know.” (King Lear)

  • Имей больше, чем показываешь. Говори меньше, чем знаешь.

4) “There is a special providence in the fall of a sparrow.” (Hamlet)

  • …и в гибели воробья есть особый промысел.

5) “How sharper than a serpent’s tooth it is to have a thankless child.”

  • Острей зубов змеиных неблагодарность детища.

6) “If music be a play of love, play on!” (Twelfth Night)

  • О, музыка, ты пища для любви! Играйте же.

7) “Neither a borrower nor a lender be.” (Hamlet)

  • В долг не давай и взаймы не бери.

8) “Life is not all cakes and ale.”

  • Жизнь прожить – не поле перейти.

9) “Much ado about nothing.” (Much Ado About Nothing)

  • Много шума из ничего.

10) “Brevity is the soul of wit.” (Hamlet)

  • Краткость – сестра таланта.

11) “Sweets to the sweet” (Hamlet)

  • Прекрасное – прекрасной.

12) “All is well that ends well.” (All is well that ends well)

  • Все хорошо, что хорошо кончается.

13) “Cowards die many times before their deaths.” (Julius Caesar)

  • Трусы умирают много раз, прежде чем умереть совсем.

14) “A friend should bear his friend's infirmities.” (Julius Caesar)

  • Человек должен относиться терпимо к недостаткам своего друга.

15) “Vows made in storms are forgotten in calm. ” (The Tempest)

  • Клятвы, данные в бурю, забываются в тихую погоду.

16) “Love all, trust a few, do wrong to none” (All is well that ends well)

  • Люби всех, доверяй немногим, не приноси боль никому.

17) “Love looks not with the eyes, but with the mind, and therefore is winged Cupid painted blind” (A Midsummer Night’s Dream)

  • Любовь смотрит не глазами, а сердцем; поэтому слепым и изображают крылатого Купидона.

18) “There is nothing either good or bad but thinking makes it so.” (Hamlet)

  • Нет ничего ни плохого, ни хорошего в этом Мире. Есть только наше отношение к чему-либо.

19) “A horse! A horse! My kingdom for a horse!” (Richard III)

  • Коня! Коня! Всё царство за коня!

20) “What's in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet” (Romeo and Juliet)

  • Роза пахнет розой, хоть розой назови её, хоть нет.

21) “The wish is the father to the thought” (King Henry IV)

  • Желание – отец мысли.



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