England / Museum / Stratford-upon-Avon / Travel

Stratford-upon-Avon: Shakespeare’s Houses

So…

Today our class woke up early in the morning in order to catch our early train to Stratford-upon-Avon, Shakespeare’s birthplace. We would only be staying for one night, but we had watched a play the night before and gotten back home after 11pm so we were all justifiably sleep-deprived from packing the night before.

train to Stratford!

train to Stratford!

Christadelphian Hall...?

Christadelphian Hall…?

The Fool!

The Fool!

Shakespeare's Birthplace

Shakespeare’s Birthplace

The Shakespeare Centre

The Shakespeare Centre

The first house we visited was actually a mini-museum of artwork and literature created by and about Shakespeare. We originally planned to just visit the first house as a group before visiting the other houses by ourselves, but because we apparently booked the group tickets then we had to travel together as a group, which meant slower walking to wait for those who wanted to take photos (like me).

William Shakespeare

William Shakespeare

"Shakespeare's Treasures"

“Shakespeare’s Treasures”

"...and thereby hangs a tale"

“…and thereby hangs a tale”

"all the world's a stage"

“all the world’s a stage”

The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust Portrait of William Shakespeare

The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust Portrait of William Shakespeare

beautiful gardens!

beautiful gardens!

We then visited Shakespeare’s birth home, where he was born and raised with his brothers and sisters. The bedrooms were really interesting because Shakespeare apparently shared a room with his younger brothers, though his youngest brother was born just after he turned 18, when he got married (scandalously young) to a 26 year-old Anne Hathaway. We also visited his father’s workshop, and were informed of the different types of gloves available: white lambskin gloves for the ladies, 2-fingered gloves for workers, black gloves for the lords, etc.

entrance to Shakespeare's home

entrance to Shakespeare’s home

the kitchen/dining room

the kitchen/dining room

glove-making

glove-making

downstairs workshop

downstairs workshop

one of the bedrooms

one of the bedrooms

pull-out bed

pull-out bed

gardens part 2

gardens part 2

Before arriving at the next house we visited the gift shop, which had an amazing array of items, including a William Shakespeare’s Star Wars text! I really enjoyed reading the Shakespearean Insults magnets, but for the price tag it wasn’t worth buying. The ‘to be or not to be’ t-shirt reminded me of the letters projected on screen when you visited your eye doctor – interesting, but weird!

Star Wars, Shakespeare-style

Star Wars, Shakespeare-style

"to be or not to be" t-shirt

“to be or not to be” t-shirt

quill and ink set

quill and ink set

Shakespeare's Insults magnets

Shakespeare’s Insults magnets

Shakespeare individual quotes magnets

Shakespeare individual quotes magnets

Shakespeare's Love Quotations magnets

Shakespeare’s Love Quotations magnets

The next house on our list was Nash’s House, owned by Thomas Nash and his wife Elizabeth (Shakespeare’s granddaughter). On the way we passed by a Dr. Who-friendly store, and Anne Hathaway’s tea house (where one afternoon tea set costs a person £12.50!). My favorite room in the house contained the ‘Top Ten Shakespeare characters’ gallery, because of the caricatures of each person – Beatrice had a female symbol on her dress (similar to Superman’s ‘S’), and Cleopatra was using modern makeup in front of a vanity table!

Dr. Who!

Dr. Who!

Hathaway's Tea Rooms

Hathaway’s Tea Rooms

Nash's House & New Place

Nash’s House & New Place

information

information

Top 10 Shakespeare Characters Exhibition

Top 10 Shakespeare Characters Exhibition

the Top Ten characters

the Top Ten characters

#1 Juliet and #6 Romeo

#1 Juliet and #6 Romeo

#2 Hamlet

#2 Hamlet

#3 Bottom

#3 Bottom

#4 Beatrice

#4 Beatrice

#5 Mercutio

#5 Mercutio

#7 Falstaff

#7 Falstaff

#8 Macbeth

#8 Macbeth

#9 Henry V

#9 Henry V

#10 Cleopatra

#10 Cleopatra

all the props!

all the props!

Finally, we visited Hall’s Croft, the home of Shakespeare’s daughter Susanna and her husband Dr. John Hall. The house had a large set of life-size figures in the main room display – people such as the doctor and his wife (of course), but also Henry Smith, Marian Stuart, Marie Corelli, Anthony Quayle, and Josephine Macleod. There was also a replica of the bedroom, with text containing information on the Elizabethan baby’s cradle.

Hall's Croft

Hall’s Croft

Dr. John and Susanna Hall

Dr. John and Susanna Hall

Henry Smith

Henry Smith

Marian Stuart

Marian Stuart

Marie Corelli

Marie Corelli

Anthony Quayle

Anthony Quayle

Josephine Macleod

Josephine Macleod

the bedroom

the bedroom

"an Elizabethan baby's cradle" information

“an Elizabethan baby’s cradle” information

The gift shop contained several items not found in the previous one, such as the ‘Out, damned spot!’ erasers and the Shakespearean insults mug. However I did not buy anything here because I had already purchased two magnets in the previous shop, and the candy (while tempting) was just too expensive for my taste. Overall it was a really fun experience walking around town and seeing what Shakespeare’s life would have been like growing up!

Shakespeare's Insults mug

Shakespeare’s Insults mug

"Out, damned spot!" erasers

“Out, damned spot!” erasers

Shakespeare candy

Shakespeare candy

Union Jack mini-cooper

Union Jack mini-cooper

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7 thoughts on “Stratford-upon-Avon: Shakespeare’s Houses

  1. Pingback: English Breakfast at Linhill | travelin' 20somethin'

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  4. Great stuff, Andie! You seem to be savouring every bit of it! I visited most of these places, but I didn’t pay much attention to the details as much as you have done. Great job!

    Mr. Elish

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  7. Pingback: Wendy and Peter Pan | travelin' 20somethin'

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