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|LONDON Cheap Nike Air Max Free Shipping , Feb. 7 (Xinhua) -- The life that playwright William Shakespeare lived 400 years ago in London is revealed through a new exhibition, which includes among its artefacts both his will and a document alleging he used force to take an entire theater.
For the first time the UK's National Archives, which holds Shakespeare's will, has collaborated with another institution, in this case King's College London, to display documents related to Shakespeare in central London.
Professor Gordon McMullan Cheap Nike Air Max Outlet , Director, London Shakespeare Centre at King's College London and the show's curator, told Xinhua, "We have a number of documents that show Shakespeare's day-to-day life in London and particularly his day-to-day life as a sharer in the Lord Chamberlain's Men and the King's Company (both are troupes of actors).
"The National Archives has well over 100 documents relating to Shakespeare, and we chose seven of those. The most obvious one is the will, famous for the phrase 'I leave my second best bed to my wife' as a bequest on it."
The will is signed three times by Shakespeare and was drawn up in March 1616. It is one of only four documents in the world with Shakespeare's signature on it.
The show 'By Me: William Shakespeare a Life in Writing' reveals that Shakespeare and his fellow actors were lucky not to be executed after unwittingly becoming involved in the preamble to a failed coup attempt against Queen Elizabeth I.
On show is a document relating to the Essex Rebellion in 1601. The Earl of Essex Cheap Nike Air Max Shoes , a favorite of Queen Elizabeth I, had taken an army to Ireland and had become displeased with the Queen's policies.
"He got around to a half-hearted coup d'etat and the day before the attempted coup took place Essex's steward and some of his supporters sponsored a performance of Richard II to be put on at The Globe," said McMullan.
"The problem with Richard II is that it has the scene in it where the King is deposed by the uprising of Bolingbroke. That scene was omitted from the first three printings of the quarto of Richard II and therefore considered to be political dynamite," said McMullan.
The authorities seized one of Shakespeare's colleagues and interrogated him, to find out if the actors and the theater company had been involved in the coup attempt.
"What we have got is the manuscript of the interrogation of Shakespeare's colleague Augustin Phillips who basically said 'sorry we did not know anything about it, guv' or words to that effect with a lot of foot shuffling and humming and ha-ing Cheap Nike Air Max ," said McMullan.
In the aftermath of the failed coup the plotters were beheaded but, as McMullan said, "the company was fine, they were not blamed for it."
Also on show is a tantalising document, as it contains the only written record of Shakespeare speaking. However, as it is a court document Cheap Air Max Mens , the writer's words seem a little dull compared to his plays and poems.
In 1612 Shakespeare had become involved in a court case over a disputed dowry, as a result of having been a witness to the engagement.
The court records show Shakespeare's testimony under examination of his recollection of the engagement agreement, which had taken place eight years before.
McMullan said, "We have the only recorded actual words that Shakespeare spoke. But of course they were recorded in a legal-speak; but all he says is 'I don't remember', but it is fascinating to see Shakespeare in a real life situation and of course it was around that time that he wrote Measure for Measure which is a play containing an unpaid dowry. Not that we are suggesting the court case led to the play, but it is the kind of thing that was going on all around him Cheap Air Max Online , the kind of material that he did pick up for plays which the audience would have known well."
Perhaps the most lurid of all the documents is yet another court record, this time relating to the alleged robbery of an entire theater.
Theaters in the late 1590s and early 1600s were temporary buildings, made of wood. They could be dismantled and reassembled relatively quickly, something that was essential because the authorities often took a dim view of the theater and of actors and tried to suppress their activities from time to time.
Shakespeare was involved with a troupe of actors called the Lord Chamberlain's Men in 1599, who operated out of a building called The Theater in Shoreditch, just outside the northern city walls of London.
The landlord who owned the land Cheap Air Max Free Shipping , Giles Allen, had raised the rent continually and the theater troupe had become tired of this.
McMullan said, "Allegedly the went round one night, took the building down, took the wood away and rebuilt it as The Globe in Southwark."
Allen, very angry Cheap Air Max Outlet , took the troupe to court and escalated the complaint through the court system, to the top -- to an institution called the Star Chamber.
McMullan said, "If you were going to get a case heard at the Star Chamber, there had to be a degree of violence involved, perhaps implicit insurrection.
"So, Allen describes it in very lurid terms; how the Lord Chamberlain's Men Cheap Air Max Shoes , including Richard Burbage (a famous actor) and Shakespeare came along, waved swords and daggers around and took everything away by force."
It makes a very good story, but it seems likely the court also thought it better fiction than fact as nothing came of it.
"We have no idea if it was true. But it was the kind of thing you had to say if you wanted to be in Star Chamber," said McMullan.
The exhibition runs until May 29 in the Inigo Rooms, in the East Wing of Somerset House in central London.
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