The Discrepancies of Shakespeare
Shakespeare is a world renowned playwright. Most people could describe at least of one of his plays, poems, or sonnets. However, not many people can recall the details of his personal life. Some may know that he was married, while others believe that he gay. Since there are so many discrepancies concerning William Shakespeare, it can no longer be determined what the facts are and what is fiction.
The discrepancies that involve Shakespeare start with his father. John Shakespeare had come to live in Stratford-upon-Avon, working as a glove maker. However, John had a long line of jobs. He was a wool dealer and was involved in money-lending (www.shakespeare.org). Besides these he was a whittawer, which is a white-leather worker, and a general agricultural dealer (Hunter WP). According to John Aubrey, an English writer from Shakespeare’s time, John was a butcher. To add to all of this, research shows that John was a prominent citizen, and a “highly successful and respected man of high status” (http:18.104.22.168). John held many public official positions. He served on the town council for many years, maintained the position of justice of the peace, and became Bailiff, the equivalent of a modern day mayor, in 1568, (www.shakespeare.org). Now, how could a man who couldn’t write, (http:22.214.171.124), hold so many different positions? From butcher to a glove maker to being involved with money-lending to Bailiff, how can one tell what is true and which is made up to improve the story of where William Shakespeare came from?
John married Mary Arden in 1557 (Hunter WP). She came from a wealthy family who paid a “handsome dowry to marry her off,” (http:126.96.36.199). Now this increase in John’s funds could explain how he eventually went from glove maker to Bailiff. However, there were numerous years that passed between his increase of funds and his honorable title, that it is highly doubtful.
William Shakespeare was the third child that Mary bore John, but he was the first to live past early childhood. Shakespeare was born in April of 1564, but the exact date of his arrival is not known. Since the rate of infant mortality was high, babies were baptized within two or three days of their birth. Shakespeare was baptized on the 26th of April (Epstein, 22). So, it is assumed that Shakespeare was born on April 23, 1564. However, he could have been born on the 24th or the 22nd. In fact, he could have been born on the 25th and there just happened to be a baptismal on the 26th. There are so many possibilities that one must wonder if it is right to assume a date.
Nobody knows if Shakespeare went to school or not. There are no records that Shakespeare ever attended school. However, since no records of anyone’s school attendance were generally kept, there is no evidence against it. It...