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All Documents

April 26, 1564
The earliest reference to William Shakespeare appears in the parish register for Holy Trinity Church in an entry for his baptism on April 26, 1564.
November 27, 1582
Two documents record the marriage of William Shakespeare and Anne Hathaway but the evidence is flawed.
November 28, 1582
This marriage bond, dated November 28, 1582 states that there was nothing to prevent William Shakespeare and Anne Hathaway’s marriage from taking place, and that the bishop of Worcester, who issued the marriage license would be safeguarded from any future possible objections.
May 26, 1583
Susanna, William and Anne Shakespeare’s first child, was baptized on May 26, 1583, according to the Holy Trinity Church parish register. Next to the entry, a “X” added by a later hand highlights its significance.
February 2, 1585
Hamnet and Judith, William and Anne Shakespeare’s second and third children, were baptized on the same day, February 2, 1585, according to the Holy Trinity Church parish register.
October 9, 1589
SHAKESPEARE DOCUMENTED IS STILL GROWING! Descriptive content and transcriptions will continue to be added, updated and expanded. Check back for regular updates!
June 12, 1593
This diary entry, written by Richard Stonley on Tuesday, June 12, 1593, records the first known purchase of the first edition of Shakespeare's first printed work, the narrative poem Venus and Adonis (London, 1593).
March 15, 1595
By March 15, 1595, and inferentially by Christmas 1594, William Shakespeare had become a leading member of his company, the Lord Chamberlain’s players, sufficiently senior to serve with William Kempe and Richard Burbage as a financial trustee.
November 29, 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.
October 20, 1596
Two draft grants of arms survive from the 1596 application, both dated October 20, 1596, and both in the handwriting of William Dethick, the most senior of the 13 heralds of the College of Arms.