Is This a Shakespeare Which I See Before Me?http://www.nytimes.com/2009/03/10/world/europe/10shakespeare.html?ref=worldWhy is this the definitive image of Shakespeare?http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/magazine/7936629.stmShakespeare's first theatre foundhttp://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/7931823.stmWilliam Shakespeare at the National Portrait Galleryhttp://www.npg.org.uk/collections/search/person.php?search=ss&role=sit&LinkID=mp04051William Shakespeare Quizhttp://www.npg.org.uk/learning/digital/history/shakespeare-quiz.phpWilliam Shakespeare Birthplace Trusthttp://www.shakespeare.org.uk/index.htmlThe Complete Works of William Shakepearehttp://shakespeare.mit.edu/Earlier this week a heritage group announced that it had uncovered the only portrait of William Shakespeare made during his lifetime. Until this discovery the best available likeness of Shakespeare was of a solemn-faced, balding man best known from the famous 1623 engravings that graced the cover of the First Folio collection of Shakespeare's plays. In comparison, this portrait shows a dark-eye, handsome figure dressed in Elizabethan finery. Paul Edmondson, director of learning at the Shakespeare Learning Trust, stated, "This is Shakespeare alive, with fresh blood pumping through his veins, painted in his lifetime. The copies look dead by comparison." Scholars are convinced that this is a portrait of Shakespeare because so many copies of the painting were made, including one held at the Folger Shakespeare Library. Incredibly, the portrait had been held in private hands for centuries by the Cobbe family, as the owners were unaware that it was a portrait of Shakespeare. Three years ago, a member of the Cobbe family walked into the National Portrait Gallery to see the exhibit "Searching for Shakespeare" and one of the first things he saw was the famous Folger portrait, a copy of the portrait held by the family. The Cobbe collection curator spent three years researching the painting, and performed several sophisticated testes, including X-ray and infrared imaging to determine the portraits age. Although there is no doubt that this newly discovered portrait is an original, there will always be some question as to whether or not it is a portrait of Shakespeare. Edmondson believes that the portrait is of the Bard, but admits, "We're 90 percent sure that it's Shakespeare, you'll never be entirely certain. There will always be voices of dissent." The first link will take you to a piece from the New York Times about the discovery of Shakepeare's portrait. The second link leads to a piece from the BBC that further discusses the difficulty in determining the actual subject of a portrait. The third link will take users to a video and article about another Shakespeare discovery made this week, as remnants of Shakespeare's first theater were discovered. The fourth link will take users to the National Portrait Gallery's Shakespeare Collection, which includes over 48 images of the famous Bard. The fifth link will test users on their knowledge of all things Shakespeare. Interested in visiting England and learning more about Shakespeare? Well, the sixth link will take you to the website of the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust, which has information on events and celebrations held throughout the year. Last, in case all this talk about Shakespeare leads to a desire to read a bit from the Bard, a link to the compete works of William Shakespeare.


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