(Dalya Alberge’s article appeared in The Guardian, 9/26; via CheyRichards.)
The story of how William Shakespeare’s father slipped from wealth to bankruptcy, leaving his impoverished son to struggle to establish himself as a poet and actor before making his own wealth in the London theatre, has long been an established part of the mythology surrounding the playwright. But a new study of the family’s business in the wool trade suggests this is far from an accurate account.
David Fallow, a former financier, has spent years studying the Shakespeare family’s wealth, poring over documentary evidence from a time when “wool was to the English economy what oil is to Saudi Arabia today”.
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