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November 29, 1596
The Langley Writ: Court of King's Bench writ of attachment against William Shakespeare, Michaelmas, 1596
The enrolled entry known to Shakespeare scholars as the “Langley writ” was recorded in the Court of King’s Bench between October 29, 1596 and January 24, 1597. The writ constitutes presumptive evidence that William Shakespeare, formerly of St.
Edward III was published anonymously in 1596, and was one of three plays attributed to Shakespeare in the catalogue of books appended to Thomas Goffe’s The Careless Shepherdess in 1656.
This undated petition to the Privy Council signed by neighbors of a prospective playhouse in Blackfriars is one of three related documents, all in the same hand, among the State Papers in The National Archives:
June 25, 1596
On June 25, 1596, the London printer and publisher John Harrison the Elder transferred his rights to print Shakespeare's poem Venus and Adonis to his colleague, William Leake, who printed the fifth edition in 1599.
The fourth edition of Shakespeare's popular narrative poem Venus and Adonis was published in 1596, three years after the first edition. This fourth edition was the last to be printed by Richard Field and sold by John Harrison.
Richard III was first printed in 1597, and the title page enumerates the various exploits to be found within, including Richard’s “treacherous Plots,” the “pittiefull murther of his innocent nephews,” his “tyrannicall vsurpation,” and of course h
Romeo and Juliet was one of Shakespeare’s most popular plays from the moment it was first performed and printed.
May 4, 1597
For further details about the 1597 exemplification, see the general essay for Shakespeare's purchase of New Place.
January 26, 1597
On January 29, 1597 John Shakespeare sold his neighbor, George Badger, a strip of land on the north-western boundary of John’s Henley Street property (now known as the Birthplace). The conveyance shown here is in Latin.