How it all started - the old Globe Theater History
The history of the old Globe Theatre is a short and turbulent one as the old Globe Timeline will clearly indicate. The success and popularity of Theatre during the life of Shakespeare is an outstanding success story for Theatrical entrepreneurs of the era. The Elizabethan era saw the rise in the popularity of theatres and during this time the staging of plays moved from renovated inn-yards to the building of huge out door amphitheatres, such as the Globe, which were used for the summer seasons and the building or renovation of indoor theatres, used in the Winter seasons and by royalty, called Playhouses. Full details of the growth of the Elizabethan theatre can be accessed by clicking Elizabethan Theaters and Playhouses and the timeline helps to clarify the places and events. All of this started in 1576 as the timeline shows.
The Rise and Fall of Theaters - the Timeline
The rise of Theatres start in 1576 but by 1648 theatres and playhouses were ordered to be pulled down, all players to be seized and whipped, and anyone caught attending a play to be fined five shillings. What events took place to lead to such a reverse of fortune for Theatres? What happened? The timeline and history provides all of the answers.
History and Timeline
The Old Globe Theater History and Timeline
This site contains many other sections complete with a specific timeline - please refer to the site map for further details of all Shakespearean and Elizabethan history and timeline information.
1564 April 23 William Shakespeare was born
1572 Leicester's men play Stratford
1576 James Burbage (father of the actor, Richard Burbage) obtains lease and permission to build a 'Theatre' in Shoreditch, London. The Lord Chamberlain's Men use it from 1594 to 1596
1577 Another open air amphitheatre called The Curtain opens in Finsbury Fields, Shoreditch, London
1587 Open air amphitheatre The Rose, Bankside, Surrey is opened
1592 September 3, Death of Robert Greene author of Groatsworth of Wit in which he complains about Shakespeare as an "upstart crow"
1593 Theatres close due to the Bubonic Plague (The Black Death)
1594 The Lord Chamberlain's Company (formally known as 'Lord Stranges Men' was formed.
1595 March 15, First document mentioning Shakespeare connected with Theatre
1596 July - The Lord Chamberlain dies and the acting troupe lose this important patron
1596 From 1596 to 1597 London's authorities banned the public presentation of plays within the city limits of London. The troupe therefore cannot play at their normal winter venue The Cross Keys Inn-yard. The Swan is located as their temporary winter venue.
1596 James Burbage purchases Blackfriars and converts it to a theatre. Unable to get permission to open as a theatre it stands empty
1597 Dispute over the lease of 'Theatre'. The Puritan owner, Giles Allen. disapproved of Theatre and the acting troupe. Burbage opens negotiations to re-new the lease of the 'Theatre'
1597 Shakespeare's company of actors moved to the Curtain Theatre after failed negotiations for a new lease for the 'Theatre'
1598 Christmas - Timber from the 'Theatre' taken to use for the building of a new theatre to be called the Globe
1598 Shakespeare is mentioned as "a principal comedian."
1599 The Globe Theatre is opened on Bankside
1600 Richard Burbage is forced to lease out Blackfriars.
1601 Shakespeare's acting troupe, the Chamberlain's Men, were commissioned to stage Richard II at the Globe
1603 Shakespeare acted in Jonson's Sejanus and is mentioned as "a principal tragedian."
1603 The Bubonic Plague (The Black Death) again ravages London killing 33,000 people
1603 May 19, The King's Men acting troupe forms.
1608 Shakespeare is mentioned as one of "the mens' players" (The King's Men)
1608 August - Richard Burbage takes back the lease for the Blackfriars Theatre. The King's Men, including Shakespeare became part owners. Theatre is used for their winter performances
1613 June 29, Fire at the Globe Theatre
1614 Globe Theatre was rebuilt on original foundations, this time the roof is tiled, not thatched
1616 April 25, Burial of William Shakespeare in the chancel of Holy Trinity Church in Stratford.
1642 The English Civil War beaks out between the Parliamentarians (Puritans) and the Royalsists
1642 September 2 - Parliament issues an ordinance suppressing all stage plays
1644 The Globe Theatre demolished by the Puritans. 15th April - Landowner Sir Matthew Brend demolishes the Globe and builds tenement houses on the site
1647 Even stricter rules passed by the Puritans restricting the staging of plays
1648 The Puritans ordered all playhouses and theatres to be pulled down, all players to be seized and whipped, and anyone caught attending a play to be fined five shillings.
1649 The Civil War finally leads to the terrible execution of King Charles I by the Parliamentarians (Puritans)
1653 Oliver Cromwell becomes Lord Protector of England
1658 Cromwell dies and the power of the Puritan starts to decline
1660 King Charles II is restored to the throne of England
1660 The Restoration, and the demise in the power of the Puritans, sees the opening of Theatres again. But the Globe Theatre is never re-built.
Theater History and Timeline
The New Globe Theater Information and Timeline
The site of the old Globe theatre was rediscovered in the 20th century and a reconstruction of the New Globe Theatre has been built near the spot. This section features an unusual picture of the stage and a Timeline charting the building. This site contains many other sections complete with a specific timeline - please refer to the site map for further details of all Shakespearean and Elizabethan history and timeline information.