William Shakespeare

William Shakespeare - born April 1564; baptised April 26, 1564; died April 23, 1616 (O.S.), May 3, 1616 (N.S.)—has a reputation as the greatest writer the English language has ever known. Indeed, the English Renaissance has often been called "the age of Shakespeare". As a playwright, he performed the rare feat of excelling in both tragedy and comedy. He also wrote 154 sonnets, two narrative poems, and a handful of shorter poems; several of his plays feature songs that are among the finest lyric poems in English. These arguably feature amongst the most brilliant pieces of English literature ever written, because of Shakespeare's ability to rise beyond the narrative and describe the innermost and the most profound aspects of human nature.
Shakespeare wrote his works between 1588 and 1613, although the exact dates and chronology of the plays attributed to him remain relatively uncertain in many instances.
Longer poems:
Venus and Adonis
The Rape of Lucrece
The Passionate Pilgrim
The Phoenix and the Turtle
A Funeral Elegy by W.S. (?). For a period many believed, on the basis of stylistic evidence researched by Don Foster, that Shakespeare wrote a Funeral Elegy for William Peter. However most scholars, including Foster, now conclude that this evidence was flawed and that Shakespeare did not write the Elegy, which is more likely from the pen of John Ford.

Specialist acting companies and theatres

John Bell's Bell Shakespeare Company in Australia
Oregon Shakespeare Festival in Ashland, Oregon
Royal Shakespeare Company in Stratford-upon-Avon
Utah Shakespearean Festival in Cedar City, Utah
The Shakespeare Theater in Washington, DC
Shakespeare by the Sea, various companies of this name in Canada and the US

Plays and their categories
Shakespeare's plays first appeared in print as a series of folios and quartos, and scholars, actors and directors continue to study and perform them extensively. They form an established part of the Western canon of literature.

One could categorise his dramatic work as follows:

Romeo and Juliet
King Lear
Titus Andronicus
Julius Caesar
Antony and Cleopatra
Troilus and Cressida
Timon of Athens
The Comedy of Errors
All's Well That Ends Well
As You Like It
A Midsummer Night's Dream
Much Ado About Nothing
Measure for Measure
The Tempest
Taming of the Shrew
Twelfth Night or What You Will
The Merchant of Venice
The Merry Wives of Windsor
Love's Labour's Lost
The Two Gentlemen of Verona
Pericles, Prince of Tyre
The Winter's Tale
The Two Noble Kinsmen
Richard III
Richard II
Henry VI, part 1
Henry VI, part 2
Henry VI, part 3
Henry V
Henry IV, part 1
Henry IV, part 2
Henry VIII
King John
Some scholars of Shakespeare break the category of "Comedies" into "Comedies" and "Romances". Plays in the latter category would include Cymbeline, The Winter's Tale, Pericles Prince of Tyre, and The Tempest.