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Shakespeare’s World: Elizabethan England. Life in London.

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Presentation on theme: "Shakespeare’s World: Elizabethan England. Life in London."— Presentation transcript:

1 Shakespeare’s World: Elizabethan England. Life in London.
Elizabethan Theatre The Globe William Shakespeare Other important actors, poets, playwrights

2 ELIZABETHAN ENGLAND Country unified, trade and commerce flourished
Age of exploration Expanding with confidence and reflecting in it the drama of the period England became a dominant force under Elizabeth I ( ) London largest city in Europe. Population: 93,000 in ,000 by Doubles again in 50 years.

3 Continued. 1558 to 1603 (Elizabeth I's reign)
Renaissance: Rebirth out of darker times. Male superiority Return to Protestantism Improvement of the educational system English language gains importance In Italy, Galileo invents the telescope = challenges the way people think about Earth and the universe. Drama, theatres and Shakespeare


5 Queen Elizabeth I ( ) Believed in royal absolutism: Rising against her and her laws was not only criminal but also a blasphemous act People thought Democracy was silly. The Monarchy is based on hierarchy of power as seen in the Bible: God, angels, humans, etc. = Kings, Nobles, normal people, etc. Queen Elizabeth Had an immense influence over the country; politically and socially She was very popular with her people. She represented greatness to her people. She loved the theater (others wanted to close all theaters because they were “sinful”). Reckless, unpredictable: execution of Mary, Queen of Scots imprisonment of Sir Walter Raleigh Persecution of Catholics

6 King James became King in 1603
He loved the theater (as did Elizabeth). He made Shakespeare’s theater group (The Lord Chamberlain’s Men) into his own group. The name changed to The King’s Men. King James also requisitioned the first English translation of the Bible, called the King James version of the Bible. It was published in 1611.

The Theatres in London were not on the “better” side of the River Thames They were located on the Bishop of Canterbury’s Land, across the river from downtown London. Surrounded by brothels,pubs and gaming houses Bear baiting matches were held at theaters if no play was scheduled.

8 Life in London around 1600 Was a labyrinth of tiny streets, with only one route across the Thames, the river which dominated the city Most of the 200,000+ population was crammed within the city walls. Sanitation issues lead to rise in disease and plague. The lord mayor ran the city The houses and palaces of the nobility lay to the west, near Westminster (safe from plague outbreaks). People worked long hours, with workers often living on the work premises with their masters. Theatres were outside the walls of the city, near the brothels.

9 How the plague spread: The Cycle

10 ELIZABETHAN THEATRE No Women actors! All parts were played by men! Why? Because many considered the theater sinful and they didn’t want innocent women corrupted by it. Elizabethan stage practices were learned from Medieval dramas and the traditions of the pageant wagon. In the early days,Elizabethan theatre space was located in courtyards and the larger homes of noble patrons. Due to advances many playwrights were able to write very different plays than the more formal Greeks Elizabethan Theatre was able to be more expansive and include many more actors and action No hesitancy to show murder and bloodshed on stage.

No longer state or church supported (many thought plays were sinful). 6 days a week (NO Sundays) In the afternoon,(2-5)No lights Changed plays often to keep the people coming They announced what kind of play was showing with flags: Black-Tragedy,White-comedy, Red-History One play could be performed up to ten times in a season

12 THEATRE SPACE “the Theatre’ first permanent theatre space built in England Built by James Burbage father of an important actor of Shakespeare’s day. Constructed in amphitheatre/thrust style:open air

13 THE GLOBE THEATRE One of the most famous Elizabethan theatres
Surrounded on three sides by seating “galleries” Shakespeare’s troupe performed here.He was part owner in the theatre The acting company had about 25 actors, all male Half of the actors were share holders in the theatre.

14 The Globe Theatre

15 Globe cont. Stage was 43 feet wide
Extended 1/2 way into the yard(about 27 1/2ft) 3 stories of galleries:12ft.,11ft. And 9ft in height 4 separately divided gentlemen’s rooms

16 The Globe “Groundlings” stood on the ground floor, more expensive seats were in the balconies. The floor was covered in nut shells (people ate during the show just like we eat in movies). The audience was very loud and vocal. Actors really had to yell to be heard. If someone did not like the play, they would yell at the actors and maybe even throw things at them. No scenery BUT they did have nice costumes and props.

17 The Globe

18 Globe cont. The Globe held about 3000 people
1c admission for standing room Higher price for gallery seating Private boxes for the nobility Sold refreshments No restroom, no intermission “Box Office”



21 TO BE OR NOT TO BE….. The Globe theatre was burned to the ground in 1613 Fire started when a prop cannon explode during the first night performance of Henry VIII. Rebuilt on the same site. Was Demolished in 1644 when theatres were closed.

22 PLAYWRIGHTS Paid by the play Shakespeare averaged two a year
Often plays of specific playwright written exclusively for one theatre. No copyright laws; use of sides William Shakespeare, Sir Walter Raleigh, Christopher Marlowe, Edmund Spencer were all Elizabethan playwrights

23 WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE Born April 23, 1564 at Stratford–upon-Avon.
Died April 23, He was 52-years-old. Father John Shakespeare was a glove maker and trader. William attended grammar school, learned Latin, and read the classics including mythology. Married Anne Hathaway in She was He was 18. 3 children: Susanna + twins: Judith & Hamnet (Hamnet died in 1596 at age 11). Moved to London between Was part of the acting group called The Lord Chamberlain’s Men (it became the King’s Men) Wrote 37 plays and 154 poems/sonnets. Plays are divided into Histories, Tragedies, Comedies & Tragicomedy

24 Shakespeare: Probably not happily married to Anne. He left her his “second best” bed. Loved his children and was devastated by Hamnet’s death. After that, he wrote many great tragedies. Became wealthy due to his part ownership of the Globe. He retired in 1613 after the Globe burned down and he moved back to Stratford. He died on his birthday, April 23, in the year He is buried in Stratford at Holy Trinity Church.

25 THE KING’S MEN Shakespeare was a member of the Lord Chamberlain’s Men.
Became King’s Men when James I became king in 1603. Company was given royal patent. Performed at court 12 times a year. This provided job security and boosted Shakespeare’s fame. Between this AND Shakespeare’s owning part of the Globe, he made plenty of money.


27 William Shakespeare’s Home

28 Shakespeare’s grave in Holy Trinity Church, Stratford.

29 SHAKESPEARE PLAYS History Plays: Henry IV Parts1&2,4&6
Parts 1,2 &3,Richard II and III etc. Tragedies: Romeo & Juliet, Hamlet, Macbeth, King Lear, Othello, etc. Comedies:12th Night,Much ado About Nothing, Taming of the shrew, Midsummer Night’s Dream, etc. Tragicomedies: All’s Well That Ends Well, A Winter’s Tale, etc.

30 The First Folio The first time his complete works were published in one volume. Came out in 1623 (a few years after his death). It is the reason we still have most of Shakespeare’s plays. This shows how respected Shakespeare was.

Many of Shakespeare’s plays have been adapted into other forms They are some of the most quoted plays of all time Still very popular today


33 Shakespeare in Love (best picture 1998)

34 RICHARD BURBAGE Greatest actor of the time period
Shakespeare wrote parts for him Hamlet,Othello,King Lear,Anthony and others Father built “The Theatre’

35 CHRISTOPHER MARLOWE Educated at Cambridge Atheist, tavern brawler
Associated with the darker side of the Elizabethan period Died in a tavern fight at 28 Most famous play The Tragical History of Dr. Faustus Famous line from Faustus: “Is this the ship that launched a thousand ships?” – referring to Helen of Troy.

36 BEN JOHNSON Most influential after Shakespeare
Had strong convictions about what audiences should like Arrogant, quarrelsome, volatile temper Imprisoned 2 times Wrote a very complimentary poem to Shakespeare that was printed in the First Folio. 1st”poet Laureate of England

37 COURT MASQUES Derived under James I (1603-1625)
Written often to compliment a person or occasion Specific roles were done by professional actor but courtiers themselves performed the masque Contained three spectacular dances Three main dances:1.entry dance 2.main dance 3.going out dance

38 COURT MASQUES Allegorical story used comparing honored person to a mythical character or situation Dancers were usually all men but sometimes ½ men and 1/2 women in a “double” masque Scenery,costumes and special effects for most of the Masques were by Indigo Jones( )


40 RESTORATION THEATRE The theatre was closed in 1644 and all theatre was banned through the Cromwell period in England. When Charles II was restored to power he re-opened the theatres in England.(1660) Noted for its Comedies Cynical View,witty dialogue, sophisticated sexual behavior “Virtuous” characters no matter the situation .“Honor” depended on wit not reputation

41 RESTORATION cont. Depicted the conventions of the Courtly society where elegance of phrase and appearance were highly prized over sincerity and morals. William Congreve( ) Love for love,The way of the World William Wycherley(1640_1715) The Country wife Oliver Goldsmith: She stoops to Conquer Restoration was first to use women in female roles By the 1700(Queen Anne) there was a revival of classical style and morality.The change was slow at first but by 1730 (George I) the hero/heroine was becoming more virtuous.

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