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The end of Mary

Mary Queen of Scots beheaded
Second English settlement in Virginia fails
Akbar annexes Kashmir

William Knell murder scene, Thame, OxfordshireA murder in Thame

The Queen's Men lose a vital member of their company on the road to Stratford...
Malcolm Storry performs Jonson's PoetasterA new wave in theatre begins

By 1588, the jigging rhymes used in plays popularly performed by the Queen's Men and others had become tired...


Armada defeated

After several naval battles the English gain a decisive victory over the Spanish

Elizabeth I on a coinNational triumph and personal tragedy

In a bittersweet year for Elizabeth I, 1588 saw her enjoy the destruction of the Spanish Armada, and the death of her much indulged favorite the Earl of Leicester...


Upheaval abroad

Henry III of France murdered. Henry of Navarre claims crown
Marlowe's "The Jew of Malta" first staged
"The Two Gentlemen of Verona" written and performed at The Theatre
"The Comedy of Errors" written and performed at The Theatre


Henry VI Part 1: the Prequel

Janssen invents the microscope
Alexander of Parma dies
Japanese begin to conquer Korea
Akbar conquers Sind
Portuguese settle at Mombassa
Boys Companies closed
First parts of Faerie Queene and Arcadia published
"King John" written and performed at The Theatre


Spanish Armada II: Wrecked!

Alexander of Parma dies
The remains of Pompeii discovered
Japan begins to conquer Korea
Akbar conquers Sind
Portuguese settle at Mombassa
Second Spanish Armada wrecked
Alleyn opens at The Rose,
"Henry VI Part 2" written and performed at The Theatre
Shakespeare starts work on "Henry VI Part 3"

The Globe Theatre, LondonRobert Greene attacks Shakespeare

Nothing breeds envy like success and it is proof of William's growing stature that he begins to draw criticism from less successful playwrights...
back of the stage of The Globe Theatre, LondonBox office smash

William had a box office hit on his hands with "Henry VI Part 1..."


Venus and Adonis

Henry IV of France becomes a Roman Catholic
"Henry VI Part 3" completed and performed at The Theatre
"The Taming of the Shrew" written and performed at The Theatre
"Richard III" written and performed at The Theatre
"Venus and Adonis" (sonnets) printed

mass gravesThe plague

All London theatres are closed by the plague. More than 10,000 die in this outbreak...
Christopher MarloweMarlowe's end

Christopher Marlowe, in his guise as a State spy, attends a fateful meeting with three others all involved in the dark world of espionage...
Venus and Adonis frontispieceNew friends, old alliances

In hard times William actively seeks patronage from the Earl of Southampton with his poem "Venus and Adonis..."


a baptism at Holy Trinity Church1564-1571

Stratford Council1572-1578

interior of Baddesley Clinton, circa 19001579-1582

exterior of The Tower of London1583-1586

The Globe Theatre, London1587-1593

Julian Glover and Adrian Schiller in King Lear1594-1597

rebuilding of The Globe Theatre, London1598-1601

Richard II, close up of crown1602-1607

quills on a desk1608-1613

grave stone1614-1616

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