Visit Your Local PBS Station PBS Home PBS Home Programs A-Z TV Schedules Watch Video Donate Shop PBS Search PBS
  playwright game the show for educators
dossier players locations evidence glossary works In Search of Shakespeare - Home
« back     Full Timeline     Fribbling Reports


William forced to leave school

exterior of King Edward VI School Stratford-upon-Avon
Edward VI School, Stratford
With the State still worried by the threat of possible uprisings, a levy is imposed on the people of Stratford to pay for the strengthening of the local militia. John Shakespeare is shown to be a non-payer. Other local figures who refuse to pay are notorious Catholics. Around this time, John begins to strategically dispose of the family's land and other property – the equivalent of setting up an offshore account in the Cayman Islands or a secret Swiss bank account today.

While he would normally have been expected to continue his studies until he was sixteen, in 1580 William Shakespeare is probably forced to leave school early in this year. It is most likely that his father employs him as an assistant to his glove making business - Shakespeare makes references to materials and techniques learned from observing the glover's trade in his later works. Suddenly, after a time absorbed in Ovid and Virgil, William has to become a breadwinner. His leaving school early will make it impossible for him to then go on to university.


portrait not availableJohn Shakespeare


Holy Trinity Church, Stratford-upon-AvonStratford upon Avon, Warwickshire

« back  
©MayaVision International, 2003 (site credits) (site feedback)