On our walk back from the U.S. Capitol Building tour we stopped at the Folger Shakespeare Library “home to the world’s largest and finest collection of Shakespeare materials and to major collections of other rare Renaissance books, manuscripts, and works of art”. Although we didn’t tour the entire library, we stepped into the quaint Folger Theatre, spent a short time at the “Open City: London, 1500-1700” exhibit reading through some of the displays explaining the changing cultural landscape in London during the time of Shakespeare and visited the gift shop.
We did learn a few things about Shakespeare while we were here but this was more because we looked at some books in the gift shop then because of any displays. Some of things we learned were:
- Shakespeare lived from 1564 – 1616
- His wife’s name was Anne Hathaway (probably a different Anne Hathaway then the one who starred in “The Princess Diaries” 😉 ).
- He had three children
- Shakespeare is said to have written 38 plays
- Shakespeare was not as well-known in his time as he is now
If you’re a fan of Shakespeare then you’ll probably want to see one of his plays here. If not, there may have more to see but since we’re not Shakespearean aficionados we wouldn’t make a return visit. I had hoped to see more information on Shakespeare, his life and his impact on society to help my children understand his significance but I did not see any exhibits of this type.
Time Spent: About 40 minutes
Cost: Free (we parked on the street at no cost but it may not be so easy to locate parking during the week)