R.I.P. William

In 1616, Shakespeare died at the young age of 52. Records show that he was buried on April 25, so it’s assumed he died on April 23, two days earlier. This date has been suspect since it is also his birthday. No one knows how Shakespeare died, so his death remains shrouded in mystery.
Some scholars have suggested that the signatures on his will indicate that he was already sick at the date of signing, 25 March 1616. Over 20 possible causes of death have been speculated, including writer’s cramp, too much alcohol, and murder.

Regardless of what brought Shakespeare to his demise, his incredible life left humankind with a prolific treasure in his writings. Shakespeare wrote 37 plays, 154 sonnets, and two narrative poems. His plays fall into three categories: histories such as Richard III and Henry V, tragedies such as Macbeth and Othello, and comedies such as Twelfth Night and As You Like It.

Shakespeare’s deep understanding of human nature and his incredible talent for making characters realistic and human make his work uniquely great. Most aspects of human nature haven’t changed much from Elizabethan England. One may even find something of him- or herself or a friend in one of Shakespeare’s characters. Much as they did in Elizabethan England, these plays can still move audiences to tears or make them roar with laughter. It is these timeless qualities that keep Shakespeare at the top of the literary and theatrical world.

Shakespeare was buried on 25 April 1616 in Holy Trinity Church, Stratford, where he had been baptised just over 52 years earlier. His tomb, which lies beneath* the floor of the church inside the chancel rail, is covered by astone* inscribed with a curse*:

The epitaph reads:
"Good frend for Jesus sake forebeare,/ To digg the dust encloased heare;/ Bleste be the man that spares thes stones,/ And curst be he that moves my bones."

Rumor is that this "curse" has kept his remains intact. More about the curse can be read in This article.

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