From the reign of Henry VII to the death of Elizabeth. History and daily life.
BY DAVID ROSS, EDITOR
Elizabethan theatre and the name of William Shakespeare are inextricably bound together, yet there were others writing plays at the same time as the bard of Avon. One of the most successful was Christopher Marlowe, who many contemporaries considered Shakespeare's superior. Marlowe's career, however, was cut short at a comparatively young age when he died in a tavern fight in Deptford, the victim of a knife in the eye.
After the Theatre, further open air playhouses opened in the London area, including the Rose (1587), and the Hope (1613). The most famous playhouse was the Globe (1599) built by the company in which Shakespeare had a stake.
The Globe was only in use until 1613, when a canon fired during a performance of Henry VIII caught the roof on fire and the building burned to the ground. The site of the theatre was rediscovered in the 20th century and a reconstruction built near the spot.
Theatre performances were held in the afternoon, because, of course, there was no artificial lighting. Women attended plays, though often the prosperous woman would wear a mask to disguise her identity. Further, no women performed in the plays. Female roles were generally performed by young boys.
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A plot to kill Elizabeth I, gain support for a Spanish invasion, and free Mary, Queen of Scots from captivity
Mary was executed after being implicated in the plot
The plot was led by Anthony Babington!
This Day in British History
01 September, 1886
Severn Tunnel opens
The longest railway tunnel in Britain took 14 years to build and stretched over 4 miles