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Renaissance England 1485-1603 & Shakespeare. William Shakespeare Widely considered to be the greatest writer in the English language and greatest playwright.

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Presentation on theme: "Renaissance England 1485-1603 & Shakespeare. William Shakespeare Widely considered to be the greatest writer in the English language and greatest playwright."— Presentation transcript:

1 Renaissance England 1485-1603 & Shakespeare

2 William Shakespeare Widely considered to be the greatest writer in the English language and greatest playwright of all time. He lived during the English Renaissance.

3 The English Renaissance A time of a renewed interest in science, commerce, philosophy, and the arts New emphasis on the individual and freedom of choice Artists of all kinds were held in great esteem The monarchs of the time period greatly enjoyed invested heavily in the arts. New religious ideas Overseas exploration


5 Renaissance Clothing

6 Real Men Wore Tights and Ruffles

7 The Printing Press The printing press was invented by Johannes Gutenberg in 1450 in Germany, but the 1 st English book was not printed until 1475. The average person was not literate. The invention of this device changed the face of the world.

8 The Monarchy The Tudors of England – Henry VII (restored peace to England after MANY years of war) – Henry VIII – Edward VI (died at 15) – Mary I (Bloody Mary) – Elizabeth I – We could talk all year about this family, but we won’t

9 Shakespeare: What’s the big deal, anyway? His plays appealed to royalty and commoners alike. He was very clever and funny. He was a brilliant wordsmith. He had a great understanding of human nature.

10 Elizabethan Theater Few props Little to no scenery Elaborate costumes Actors were called “players.” Players were respected and could earn a decent living during this time period. Only men could act on a stage, so they dressed as female characters.

11 Shakespeare & the Theater Shakespeare was a member of a few different companies and both acted and wrote plays for different theaters. He was known better as an actor than a writer. He is best known for his work with The Lord Chamberlain’s Men and later, The King’s Men and for his theater, The Globe. Queen Elizabeth, herself, attended his plays.

12 The Globe Theater It was an open air theater with no roof (no electricity). The levels symbolized the heavens, the earth, and hell. The theater was round, so people could see well from any seat. People of all social classes could enjoy the theater- from different sections. Commoners could pay a penny and stand on the floor. (The Peanut Gallery;-)


14 The Black Plague In the early 1330s an outbreak of deadly bubonic plague occurred in China. The bubonic plague mainly affects rodents, but fleas can transmit the disease to people. Once people are infected, they infect others very rapidly. The disease also causes spots on the skin that are red at first and then turn black. In October of 1347, several Italian merchant ships returned from a trip to the Black Sea, one of the key links in trade with China. The disease struck and killed people with terrible speed. The Italian writer, Boccaccio, said its victims often "ate lunch with their friends and dinner with their ancestors in paradise.“ In winter the disease seemed to disappear, but only because fleas--which were now helping to carry it from person to person--are dormant then. Each spring, the plague attacked again, killing new victims. After five years 25 million people were dead--one-third of Europe's people. Even when the worst was over, smaller outbreaks continued, not just for years, but for centuries. The survivors lived in constant fear of the plague's return, and the disease did not disappear until the 1600s.

15 Forks! Because you asked… Came to Europe through Italy's nobility in the eleventh century. Throughout the next five hundred years, the table fork spread throughout Europe, and into the lesser social classes. By 1600, the fork was known in England, Were not common by looking at wills from the Middle Ages. The few forks listed were made of precious materials, and presumably kept primarily for dazzle and ostentation. – The Jewelhouse inventory of Henry VIII: "Item one spone wt suckett fork at the end of silver and gilt"[Bailey] – Inventory of property left by Henry VII: "Item, one Case wherein are xxi knives and a fork, the hafts being crystal and chalcedony, the ends garnished with gold" [Hayward] Forks were not common- the fork was known only to the very uppermost classes, and seldom used. A Byzantine princess introduced the table fork to Europe in the eleventh century. A nobleman married a princess from Byzantium. This Byzantine princess brought a case of two- tined table forks to Venice as part of her luggage. She offended the populace and the clergy by refusing to eat with her hands: – "Instead of eating with her fingers like other people, the princess cuts up her food into small pieces and eats them by means of little golden forks with two prongs."[Giblin] – "God in his wisdom has provided man with natural forks - his fingers. Therefore it is an insult to Him to substitute artificial metallic forks for them when eating."[Giblin]

16 Medieval Cutlery

17 Shakespeare’s Writing 38 Plays – Comedies – Tragedies – Histories 154 Sonnets

18 Shakespeare’s Writing He wrote in blank verse. Blank verse is unrhymed iambic pentameter. Iambic pentameter is a type of rhythm. Iamb is the type of rhythmic pattern. Meter is the length of the line. Since penta means five, pentameter is five feet of rhythm. - / - / - / - / - / But, soft! what light through yonder window breaks? - / - / - / - / - / It is the east, and Juliet is the sun.

19 Elements of a Tragedy 1-supernatural elements (witches,ghosts) 2-tragic hero : person with noble qualities and a flaw in his character 3-tragic error: some disorder that has been committed against the laws if nature and needs to be corrected. 4-conflict...with country or with the hero himself 5-revenge...the hero is usually often revenge or he is being avenged 6-sad ending: the death, downfall or destruction 7-comic relief : some light scenes to relieve the stress of tragic events 8-isolation of main character *Look for these elements in Romeo & Juliet

20 Tips for reading Shakespeare Make use of the side notes, foot notes, and scene summaries. The stage directions were added later. Look for Shakespeare’s stage directions within the context of the dialogue. Use the line numbers in the left margin.

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