William Shakespeare

Renowned Poet and Playwright

The Basics

William Shakespeare was an Englishman who lived from 1564 to 1616. During his life, he wrote plays ranging from comedies to romances to histories, and his work is often considered to be the finest in the English language.

Criticism of Society

Within the historical play King Henry V, Shakespeare tells of the horrors of war, shows the way it tears apart families and changes even the most jovial of drunkards into solemn soldiers. Although this is the only play to really focus on this theme, the way this idea is expressed evokes strong emotions in the audience.

Timeless Plays

Although all of Shakespeare's plays were written over 400 years ago, one aspect of all of his plays is the timeless nature of them. They can be adapted to almost any setting and not lose their meaning, which means that his plays are always relevant. For example, West Side Story is a late 20th century version of Romeo and Juliet, but unlike the original, many more people can relate to it.