The most well known of Stratford-upon-Avon's citizens is William Shakespeare, born in 1564 exact date unknown but he was baptised on 26th April 1564.
He was the son of John Shakespeare and Mary Arden the daughter of a wealthy farmer and land owner.
William was educated at the Kings New School Stratford which provided him with an education in Latin Grammar and the Classics, this provided him the foundation that has provided the world with one of the greatest playwrights in history.
Known popularly as the 'Bard of Avon' and also as the 'Sweet Swan of Avon', he has created an attraction to tourists who visit Stratford to see the places associated with him.
At the age of 18 he married 26 year old Anne Hathaway.
They obtained a licence at Worcester to marry on 27th November 1582 and stopped on the way at The Old Bull Inn, Inkberrow, Worcestershire for rest and refreshment, Anne being pregnant at that time.
The old Bull Inn at Inkberrow, in Worcestershire (see picture above), is the place where William Shakespeare rested on his way to Worcester to obtain his marriage licence is also the place where the long running radio serial ‘The Archers’ is based.
The fictional pub the Bull and the village of Ambridge are based on the real life of The Old Bull at Inkberrow where it is possible to see memorabilia and photographs of past and present Archers cast.
Anne gave birth to their daughter Susanna 6 months later who was baptised on 26th May 1583.
She went on to give birth to twins, a son Hamnet and a daughter Judith, these were baptised on 2nd February 1585. Hamnet died of an unknown cause at the age of 11years on 11th August 1596.
Following the birth of the twins little is known about his activities for a number of years, reference has been made to him fleeing to London in order to escape prosecution for deer poaching at nearby Charlecote Park home of the Lucy family.
Another story is that he was employed as a Schoolmaster in Lancashire, there is also mention of him being in London caring for horses owned by the Theatre fraternity.
However there is little evidence to support these theories, what is known is that several of his plays were being performed on the London stage by 1592.
In his will Shakespeare stipulated:'I give unto my wife my second-best bed, with the furniture'.
He left his best bed and most of his other property to his daughters , Susannah and Judith.
After a career that gave the world so many plays, sonnets and poems, he was a prolific writer of varying forms of his art, he died in 1616 (cause unknown but suggestions have been made that it was bubonic plague) on the 23rd of April he was buried at The Holy Trinity Church.
In order that after his burial no attempt could be made to disturb his remains, the body was put in a grave 20 feet deep.
His wife Anne who died in 1623 on 6th August was buried in a grave by the side of his.
More Pictures of Stratford upon Avon
William Shakespeare (Baptised
26 April 1564 - died 23 April 1616) was an English
Widely regarded as the greatest writer in the English language and the world's pre-eminent dramatist. He is often called England's national poet and the "Bard of Avon" (or simply "The Bard"). His surviving works consist of 38 plays, 154 sonnets
, two long narrative poems, and several other poems. His plays have been translated into every major living language and are performed more often than those of any other playwright.
Shakespeare is regarded by many as the greatest poet of the English langauge and was well liked by his friends; he was described by Ben Jonson as 'a handsome, well-shaped man, very good company, and of very ready smooth wit'.