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On William Shakespeare’s death, Ben Jonson, paid the bard a compliment that continues to define our attitude to Shakespeare: ‘He was not of an age, but for all time’. Shakespeare’s talent is so rare that it is easy to think of him as a man out of time. But, in fact, he was born in a rural market town in the early years of Elizabeth I’s reign, and formed by the social, religious, and political worldview of the period – the very same world inhabited by his namesake William Cecil, Lord Burghley. To examine this world – a time of huge demographic, economic, social, religious, and cultural change – tells us much, in turn, about Shakespeare and Burghley themselves.
Suzannah Lipscomb’s lecture will take place in the Great Hall, with drinks in the Orangery from 6pm and the lecture from 7pm.
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