shakespeare, william

Cultural Dictionary

Shakespeare, William definition


An English playwright and poet of the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries, generally considered the greatest writer in English. His plays include Antony and Cleopatra, As You Like It, Hamlet, Julius Caesar, King Lear, Macbeth, The Merchant of Venice, A Midsummer Night's Dream, Othello, Romeo and Juliet, The Taming of the Shrew, The Tempest, and Twelfth Night. Shakespeare also wrote more than 150 sonnets. Many familiar sayings and quotations come from his works.

Shakespeare was born in Stratford-on-Avon. He spent most of his career in London as an actor, playwright, and manager of the Globe Theater. His success enabled him to retire to Stratford, where he died.

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source
Explore Dictionary.com
Previous Definition: shakespeare the bard of avon
Next Definition: shakespearean
More from Thesaurus.com
Synonyms and Antonyms for shakespeare, william
More from Reference.com
Search for articles containing shakespeare, william
Dictionary.com Word FAQs

Dictionary.com presents 366 FAQs, incorporating some of the frequently asked questions from the past with newer queries.

Copyright © 2014 Dictionary.com, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature