The birth of William Shakespeare is celebrated as the 23rd of April, 1564. Shakespeare was famously born and raised in Stratford-upon-Avon in England. He was born, lived and worked during the Elizabethan era. His father was a successful leather merchant and his mother came from a wealthy family, he was a middle child of six. Shakespeare died in 1616, on the very same date of April 23rd, exactly 52 years after his birth! 

You’ve probably heard of some of Shakespeare’s most famous plays. Romeo & Juliet, Midsummer Night’s Dream, Hamlet, among many others. His plays are categorized as comedies, tragedies, and histories. The language back then was not like how we speak today. Here is an example from As You Like It. One of his comedies! 

“Blow, blow, thou winter wind! Thou art not so unkind as man’s ingratitude” – As You Like It, Act II, Scene VII 

Shakespeare’s influence on literature and the English language remains highly significant today! His works are timeless, no matter when they are read. We’re going to write him a birthday card to thank him for his contribution to drama, art, and language! However, we’re going to write it in the traditional Shakespearean language. Using some Shakepearean pronouns… 

Thou: He/She/I 

Example) “Thou art not so unkind as man’s ingratitude” 

Thee: You 

Example) “Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day? 

Thy/Thine: Your/Yours 

Example) “This above all: to thine own self be true” 

So instead of “I hope you have fun on your birthday!” You would write, “I hope thee has many good laughs on thy day of birth” 

Use the prompt to write your birthday card to William Shakespeare. Make it as silly as you like, if it helps to imagine an English accent while you’re writing, go for it! Draw him a picture, sign your name, whatever you’d like. Have fun with it!

Dear William Shakespeare, 

Happy Birthday! 

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