23rd April
It was on this day...
1616 William Shakespeare, 52, dies

William Shakespeare had retired to Stratford three years before his death.

Few things are known about Shakespeare, including what he actually looked like.

What we do know is based on the rare public records for marriages, christenings and deaths:

He was baptized in church on April 26, 1564.

At age 18 he married Anne Hathaway, who was 24 years old and pregnant when they married. Their first daughter was called Susanna, she was born 6 months after their marriage. In 1585 they had twins, Hamnet (a boy who died at age 11) and Judith.

William became an actor and playwright for The Lord Chamberlain's Men, which changed it's name to The King's Men after James I came to the throne in 1603. The company was the finest in the country, Shakespeare was its principal dramatist. Shakespeare stayed with them until his retirement.

Shakespeare's father was given a coat of arms in 1596 which suggests that his son had achieved fame and fortune.

In 1597, William Shakespeare bought a large house in Stratford.

In 1599 he became a partner in the Globe Theatre.

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