Skip to main content

Romeo and Juliet Background (Phillips)

r jThese websites will help you explore the world of the play Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare. This is just a place to get started. You will find a lot more websites online and books in the library about these topics, but make sure you are using reliable sources!

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

 

All Topics

Internet Public Library Shakespeare page:

http://ipl2.org/IPL/Finding?Key=shakespeare&collection=gen 

 

Annual Shakespeare Birthday Lectures:

http://folgerpedia.folger.edu/Shakespeare%27s_Birthday_Lecture 

 

Elizabethan Era

 http://www.bardweb.net/england.html

 

 http://www.elizabethan.org/sites.html

 

http://www.shakespeareinamericancommunities.org/education/elizabethan-age 

 

http://www.pbs.org/shakespeare/locations/location153.html 

 

https://bardorg.squarespace.com/study-guides/elizabeths-england 

 

Queen Elizabeth I:

https://www.royal.gov.uk/HistoryoftheMonarchy/KingsandQueensofEngland/TheTudors/ElizabethI.aspx 

 

http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/people/elizabeth_I 

 

Visual arts in the Elizabethan Era:

http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/hd/liza/hd_liza.htm 

 

Poverty in the Elizabethan Era (not everyone was a Prince or a Queen!):

http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/british/tudors/poverty_01.shtml 

 

 

Shakespeare's Life

(Biographical information: When and where was he born? How was he educated? Did he have a wife and kids? How did he become famous? etc.)

 

Early life (PBS):

http://www.pbs.org/shakespeare/events/event20.html

 

http://www.bardweb.net/man.html

 

http://internetshakespeare.uvic.ca/Library/SLT/

 

http://www.shakespearesglobe.com/about-us/history-of-the-globe/shakespeare

 

Shakespeare's hometown (PBS):

http://www.pbs.org/shakespeare/locations/location27.html

 

Encyclopedia Britannica:

http://search.eb.com/shakespeare

 

Folger Shakespeare Library (click on the links to the left):

http://www.folger.edu/template.cfm?cid=865&CFID=47004137&CFTOKEN=39703130

 

 http://www.folger.edu/shakespeares-life 

 

Shakespeare's London (PBS):

http://www.pbs.org/shakespeare/locations/location154.html

 

Shakespeare's wife, Anne Hathaway (PBS):

http://www.pbs.org/shakespeare/players/player23.html

 

Important people in Shakespeare's life (PBS):

http://www.pbs.org/shakespeare/players/

 

A podcast about what Shakespeare may have looked like:

http://www.folger.edu/shakespeare-unlimited-episode-38 

 

Folger Shakespeare Library (click on the links to the left):

http://www.folger.edu/template.cfm?cid=865&CFID=47004137&CFTOKEN=39703130

 

Shakespeare's Other Plays

(What other plays did Shakespeare write? What were they about? How did he choose his subjects? Were his works inspired by anyone else? etc)

 

http://internetshakespeare.uvic.ca/Library/SLT/

 

http://www.bardweb.net/works.html

 

http://www.folger.edu/shakespeares-works 

 

Encyclopedia Britannica:

http://search.eb.com/shakespeare

 

Important people in Shakespeare's life (PBS):

http://www.pbs.org/shakespeare/players/

  

 

Shakespeare's Poetry

 

 What is a sonnet? How are Shakespeare's different from other people's sonnets, notably the Petrarchan sonnet, which was the established form before Shakespeare?

http://www.poets.org/viewmedia.php/prmMID/5791 

 

What is a sonnet?

http://www.poetryfoundation.org/learning/glossary-term/sonnet 

 

Iambic pentameter (normally About.com is not a great research source, but this article's author is a theater expert):

http://shakespeare.about.com/od/shakespeareslanguage/a/i_pentameter.htm 

 

Background on the Sonnets, Washington University

http://public.wsu.edu/~delahoyd/shakespeare/sonnets.html 

 

Shakespeare's Poetry:

http://www.bardweb.net/poetry.html 

 

General Intro to Sonnets:

http://www.shakespeare-online.com/sonnets/sonnetintroduction.html 

 

Text of Sonnets:

 http://www.shakespeare-online.com/sonnets/

 

 Another site with text of sonnets:

http://shakespeare.mit.edu/

 

Discussion of sonnets and love:

http://www.bard.org/study-guides/romeo-and-juliet-and-the-sonnet-of-love 

 

 

Stagecraft in Shakespearean Theater (especially swordfighting!:)

 

Stage fencing in Elizabethan drama:

http://www.shakespeare-online.com/essays/StageFencing.html

 

More about fencing:

http://www.elizabethan-era.org.uk/elizabethan-fencing.htm

 

Staging and performance, PBS:

http://www.folger.edu/Content/Discover-Shakespeare/Shakespeares-Theater/Staging-and-Performance.cfm

 

Stage combat in Shakespeare's times

http://www.clt.astate.edu/wnarey/shakespeare%20files/elizabethan_stage_combat.htm

 

BBC:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01g65gz 

 

Theater in the Elizabethan Era 

 

(What did people think about the acting profession at that time? Why were all the women's roles played by men? Why did the London theaters get closed all the time? Did the Queen like the theater? etc.)

 

Entertainment at the time:

 

http://www.shakespeare-online.com/faq/entertainment.html 

 

http://internetshakespeare.uvic.ca/Library/SLT/

 

Encyclopedia Britannica:

http://search.eb.com/shakespeare/browse?browseId=248012

 

Encyclopedia Britannica, another article:

http://search.eb.com/shakespeare/article-9396031

 

Actors in Shakespeare's Day:

https://bardorg.squarespace.com/study-guides/actors-in-shakespeares-day 

 

The Audience in Shakespeare's time:

https://bardorg.squarespace.com/study-guides/audience-a-very-motley-crowd

 

Costumes:

https://bardorg.squarespace.com/study-guides/what-they-wore

 

Shakespeare Online, Elizabethan Dress (NOTE: This is about what people who lived in Shakespeare's time wore, but not all the people in his plays would have worn these things, since he set many of his plays in other times):

 http://www.shakespeare-online.com/biography/elizabethanclothes.html 

 

Speaking Shakespeare's Language

 

http://www.bardweb.net/language.html 

 

Cal State LA:

http://web.calstatela.edu/faculty/jgarret/417/Reading-Shakespeare.pdf 

 

Words and Expressions that Shakespeare invented:

http://www.bbcamerica.com/anglophenia/2014/04/45-phrases-coined-shakespeare-450th-birthday

 

BBC again, influence of Shakespeare's language on today's English:

http://www.bbc.com/culture/story/20140527-say-what-shakespeares-words 

 

Commonly used words in Shakespeare

http://www.shakespeareswords.com/FEW 

 

Royal Shakespeare Company:

https://www.rsc.org.uk/shakespeare/language 

 

Iambic pentameter

http://www.poetryarchive.org/poetryarchive/glossaryItem.do?id=11938

 

PBS: 

http://www.pbs.org/shakespeare/educators/language/ 

 

From a "History of English" class at a European university:

https://www.uni-due.de/SHE/HE_ShakespeareLanguage.htm 

 

Concepts and Terms of Theater and Drama

http://www.shakespeare-online.com/playanalysis/tragedyvscomedy.html

 

http://www.shakespeare-online.com/playanalysis/tragedyvscomedy.html 

 

Stage Directions/Theater Terms:

http://homepage.smc.edu/jones_janie/Terminology.htm 

 

Tragedy--this is a long e-book but sections I and II are helpful:

http://catdir.loc.gov/catdir/samples/cam033/2002067262.pdf

 

Elements of Theater:

http://homepage.smc.edu/adair-lynch_terrin/ta%205/elements.htm

 

Glossary of Theater Terms:

http://education.goodmantheatre.org/resources/glossary-of-theater-terms/

 

Stage Directions

http://www.macmillandictionary.com/us/thesaurus-category/american/Words-and-stage-directions 

 

A fun video dictionary about theater terms. If you have any trouble watching the videos at school, try it at home.

http://dictionary.tdf.org/dictionary/

 

 

The Globe Theater

(history, architecture, and more about the most famous theater building in history!)

 

http://www.bardweb.net/globe.html

 

Encyclopedia Britannica:

http://search.eb.com/shakespeare/article-9037049

 

Clemson Shakespeare Festival Virtual Tour of the Globe Theater:
http://learni.st/boards/4689/learnings/38754-virtual-tour-of-the-globe-theater-clemson-university

 

This organization rebuilt a replica of the Globe:

http://www.shakespearesglobe.com/about-us/history-of-the-globe/original-globe

 

From a Wake Forest University librarian's Shakespeare site, Globe page:

http://users.wfu.edu/tedforrl/shakespeare/globe.htm (pictures) 

 

 

Topic 9: Poetry and the Sonnet. See "Shakespeare's Poetry" above. (Look for the links that describe poetry and sonnets as an art form, not just Shakespeare's).

 

 

The Authorship Debate: Did Shakespeare Really Write Shakespeare's Plays? 

(Some people throughout the years have argued that one man, especially one with only an average education, could not have written all of Shakespeare's amazing plays. Could it have been someone else? Whole groups have formed around this debate, like the Oxford Society, which supports the hypothesis that Edward de Vere, Earl of Oxford, could be the "real" Shakespeare. Other scholars argue that there is a ton of evidence that Shakespeare wrote his own plays, and those who say he didn't are just conspiracy theorists looking for a more exciting story. What do you think?)

 

http://www.bardweb.net/debates.html

 

PBS Frontline: The Shakespeare Mystery

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shakespeare/

 

Oxford Society (pro-earl-of-Oxford side of the debate):

http://www.shakespeare-oxford.com/

 

This article gives an overview of the whole debate but is pro-Shakespeare in the end:

https://bardorg.squarespace.com/study-guides/mr-shakespeare-i-presume

 

NPR: http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=92142217 

 

This organization aims to give an evidence-based voice to the side of the debate that believes Shakespeare may not have written the plays:

http://www.shakespeareanauthorshiptrust.org.uk/index.htm 

 

 

Love and Marriage in the Elizabethan Era

 

http://internetshakespeare.uvic.ca/Library/SLT/society/index.html

 

Encyclopedia Britannica:

http://search.eb.com/shakespeare/article-44846 (scroll down, there are lots of topics on this page)

 

Marriage:

http://internetshakespeare.uvic.ca/Library/SLT/society/family/marriage.html

 

Religion and Spiritual Beliefs in the Elizabethan Era

 

http://internetshakespeare.uvic.ca/Library/SLT/ideas/religion/index.html

 

Encyclopedia Britannica:

http://search.eb.com/shakespeare/article-44846 (scroll down, there are lots of topics on this page)

 

Catholic Church (click on "Protestant" too)--from PBS:

http://www.pbs.org/shakespeare/glossary/glossary218.html

 

Superstition and the supernatural in Shakespeare:

https://bardorg.squarespace.com/study-guides/ghosts-witches-and-shakespeare