Publication of
William Shakespeare Plays

The Biography of William Shakespeare

  • What dates were his plays first published?

  • Check out his Play Chronology!

  • What evidence of dates?

  • Why didn't he publish any of his plays?

  • Full Text, Summary, Characters & info about his plays!

  • Interesting information about  William Shakespeare plays

Picture from 'A Midsummer Nights Dream'

 

Publication of William Shakespeare Plays

THE PUBLICATION OF SHAKESPEARE PLAYS

  • The section covering Shakespeare the Playwright covers the reasons why Play writers were not held in high esteem and why the profession could be dangerous!

  • The playwrights would sell their plays to the theatre companies for a 'one-off' sum. There were no 'royalties' during the Elizabethan era!

  • Plays were blatantly copied and stolen - read the section on Quarto Texts and this plagiarism led to different versions of some plays, including those of William Shakespeare. In Shakespeare’s time copyright did not exist!

  • William Shakespeare invested in the Globe Theatre and it was in his interest to produce as many plays as possible! The type of plays being shown were advertised by different coloured flags being flown on the theatre - these flags could be seen for miles (remember that most of the population were still illiterate!) Shakespeare and the Globe Theatre

  • There was a huge amount of competition between the theatres! There was a lot of money to be earned and it was important for the theatres to produce new plays and play a variety of different plays during the week

  • The majority of the plays of William Shakespeare were published in 1623 in a document called The First Folio - Seven years after his death!

  • The plays were divided into three themes - Histories, Comedies and Tragedies:

    William Shakespeare Comedies
    William Shakespeare Histories
    William Shakespeare Tragedies

THE FIRST PUBLICATION DATES OF THE PLAYS BY WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE

  • Each of the Plays first print / publication dates are detailed below

FULL TEXT, SUMMARY, CHARACTERS AND INFO ABOUT THE PLAYS BY WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE

  • The links highlighted below will provide access to the following:

    • Full Text of the whole Play

    • Short Summary of each Play

    • Information about each play - first performance dates, number of words, history etc

    • The Cast and Characters in each Play

    • Famous Quotes from each Play

 

 

Publication of William Shakespeare Plays

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