By Lee Jamieson
Shakespeare is perhaps most famous for his tragedies – indeed, many consider Hamlet to be the best play ever written. Other tragedies include Romeo and Juliet, Macbeth and King Lear, all of which are immediately recognizable, regularly studied and frequently performed.
The Shakespeare comedy plays have stood the test of time. Today, Shakespeare comedy plays like The Tempest, The Merchant of Venice and Much Ado About Nothing continue to enthrall and entertain audiences worldwide.
Which plays are classified as Shakespeare histories and what are their common features?
Studying Shakespeare's Plays
Our collection of play study guides are designed to accompany your own reading of Shakespeare’s plays. They are an ideal way to introduce newcomers and immerse more experienced readers deeper into the texts.
How To Read a Play
Don’t know your verse from your prose? Do the words “iambic pentameter” fill you with fear? Our straightforward guides to Shakespeare’s language reveal the conventions he used in his writing.
- Introducing Iambic Pentameter
- Introducing Prose
- How To Read Shakespeare Aloud
- Shakespeare's Words
- Shakespeare's Language
Performing a Shakespeare Play
Shakespeare wrote for the stage, so the best way to appreciate his plays is through performance. This collection of resources will help you to prepare for anything from an audition to a full-scale production
Historical Context to Shakespeare's Plays
Shakespeare's plays were a product of the world around him and were shaped by the theater scene of the time. It is therefore important to look at the historical context of theater and literature in Elizabethan and Jacobean England in order to fully appreciate Shakespeare's plays.