Celebrating Shakespeare’s Birth

Posted By claire on April 23, 2013

ShakespeareAlthough it is not actually known which day in 1564 William Shakespeare was born, his birth is celebrated on 23rd April because he was baptised on 26th April and baptism usually took place around three days after birth. It is also St George’s Day, so it seems a fitting day to pay tribute to the Bard.

You can find out all about Shakespeare in my article William Shakespeare, which is full of facts about the man and his life. Shakespeare has a special place in my heart because I grew up just a few miles from Stratford-upon-Avon, went on school trips to the Royal Shakespeare Theatre and studied his plays at school and university. I love his work and so want to be a part of the #happybirthdayshakespeare project, “a project by bloggers around the world to celebrate the impact of Stratford’s greatest son” – see www.happybirthdayshakespeare.com/. I’ve chosen to celebrate by asking you to comment below by sharing your favourite Shakespeare quotation, speech, sonnet… Whatever you like. Simply share it, say which piece it’s from and give your reason for sharing it. It would also be good if you share where you’re from. I’ll start it off (see below).

By the way, today also marks the death of Shakespeare! He died on 23rd April 1616.

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26 February 1564 – Baptism of Christopher Marlowe

Posted By claire on February 26, 2013

Marlowe-Portrait-1585On this day in history, 26th February 1564, Christopher Marlowe, poet, translator and playwright, was baptised at St George’s Canterbury. Marlowe’s works included Tamburlaine, Dr Faustus, The Jew of Malta and The Passionate Shepherd to his Love. Marlovians believe that Marlowe was responsible for the works attributed to William Shakespeare.

Here are two clips from the same scene of Doctor Faustus, but different productions. The first is a clip from a 2010 production of Doctor Faustus performed at Greenwich Theatre and the second is the film starring Richard Burton as Faustus and Elizabeth Taylor as Helen of Troy. It is the scene where Mephistopheles has conjured up Helen to distract Faustus from his thoughts of repentance and to persuade him to keep his pact with Lucifer. It is a wonderful play.


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