William Shakespeare, English playwright, actor and poet, was baptized April 26, 1564 and died 1616 at aged 52. Though, he attended grammar school and most probably high school, he did not attend college. The school was known as the “King’s New School,” a free school chartered in 1553 in Stratford, England. Today, it may have been called “the school of hard knocks.”
His first record, other than his christening, records him marrying Anne Hathaway, eight years his junior. Shakespeare was 18, Anne was 26. Their marriage produced three children, Susanna and twins, Hamnet and Judith.
Success early on
For seven years there was no record of what Shakespeare was doing but then a Robert Greene referred to Shakespeare in this way:
“An upstart crow, beautified with his own feathers” who “being an absolute Johannes Factotum (Jack of all Trades), is in his own conceit the only Shake-scene in a country.”
At the time, Shakespeare was working as a playwright, actor, businessman and writer. He owned his own land and his own business called the King’s Men due to King James 1st’s approval. Nevertheless, Shakespeare went on to produce 38 plays, 154 sonnets, two long narrative poems, several other poems and collaborative endeavors as well. His work has been translated into every major language and is performed more often than any other playwright.
Immortiized in death especially during the 19th Century – The Romantic Era and Victorian Era
Shakespeare’s reputation didn’t garner excellent approval rating until several centuries after his death, namely the 19th Century. During the Romantic and the Victorian era, Shakespeare was worshiped. All of his works were looked at and studied again: the histories, tragedies, sonnets, plays and tragicomedies.
Shakespeare, an INFP on the Meyers Briggs Type Indicator personality scale, showed himself to be a gifted writer of poetry using rich metaphors alluding to a Dark Lady, tempting but degrading. He also frequently described an idealized young man instead of an idealized young woman. Frequently, his plays and poems had an unusual twist at the end.
He spoke of feelings such as delight, pride, melancholy, shame, disgust and fear. Shakespeare wasn’t afraid to “go there.” Many of his poems and plays garnered much attention and speculation as to “who” Shakespeare was really referring to? However, no actual evidence arose to suggest any truths to the speculation.
Shakespeare’s many plays adopted plots hinged upon the fatal flaws of man. In Othello, Othello’s sexual jealousy is stirred to such an extent; he kills his innocent wife who loves him. In King Lear, the old King makes a fatal error when he divvies out his inheritance before his death; then watches the tragedy unfold. In Macbeth, uncontrollable ambition incites Macbeth and his wife to murder the rightful King and usurping the throne. That is, until the guilt ends up destroying them both.
Prolific writer/poet/Jack of all Trades
And lastly, Romeo and Juliet, feuding families finally united after the death of their daughter and son; lovers who killed themselves because they wanted to be united in death if not in life. How romantic is that? William Shakespeare, INFP, actor, playwright, writer, poet, businessman and gentleman. Greatest poet and “Jack of all Trades” of all time, William Shakespeare. I leave you with his most romantic poem, Sonnet 116, in true INFP style.
Let me not to the marriage of true-minds
Admit impediments, love is not love
Which alters when it alteration finds,
Or bends with the remover to remove:
O, no, it is an ever-fixed mark,
That looks on tempests and is never shaken;
It is the star to every wand’ring bark.
Whose worth’s unknown, although his highth be taken.
Love’s not Time’s fool, though rosy lips and cheeks
Within his bending sickle’s compass come;
Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,
But bears it out even to the edge of doom.
If this be error and upon me proved,
I never writ, nor no man ever loved.
Source: The Norton Anthology of English Literature, 6th Edition