Shakespeare: William Shakespeare was born on 1564. His father was a yeoman, a successful tradesman until he met financial difficulties. He was the eldest son and attended the local grammar school. At eighteen he married Anna Hathaway. In 1593 the London theatres were closed because of the plague. He got a support from the Earl of Southampton, to whom he dedicated his poem. When the theatres reopened, Shakespeare became a shareholder and the main playwright of the most successful company of actors in London. In 1599 his company built the Globe Theatre. Between 1590 and 1596 he wrote historical dramas. The great tragedies were written between 1595 and 1605. He died when he was 52 years old. Seven years after his friends published the famous first folio. His collection includes 154 sonnets in decasyllables. He did not use the Italian form, instead he employed three quatrains and final couplet. The sonnets can be divided into two sections. In the first section are devoted to the theme of increase. The poet encourages the young man to marry and preserve his virtues. In the second, instead there are different topics; among them the poet’s warnings about the destructive power of time and moral weakness.The poem is based on extensive and elaborate metaphors and the language is often rhetorical. He wrote sonnets easily, sliding, in which comedy and tragedy coexist in the same text. The originality of Shakespeare was not in the plots, but the it use of “breaths” as did the Italian poets.