Top Folger Finds on Instagram in 2021: Shakespeare books

Calling all book lovers! Some of our most popular #FolgerFinds posts on Instagram this year featured beautiful bindings of Shakespeare’s collected works or early editions of Shakespeare plays that may have slightly different plot elements than the versions we’ve come to see as standard. One of these quartos, an early edition of A Midsummer Night’s… Continue Reading »



Top Shakespeare Unlimited podcast episodes of 2021

Our top Shakespeare Unlimited podcast episodes from 2021 explore the British royal family, a Shakespeare-inspired novel, lost plays, and more. Happy listening! How We Hear Shakespeare’s Plays, with Carla Della Gatta In Shakespeare’s time, people talked about going to hear a play and going to see one in equal measure. So what exactly do we… Continue Reading »


“The world unwinding”: Station Eleven, Shakespeare, and an artist’s-eye view of apocalypse

During the covid-19 pandemic, two methods of escape for me have been Shakespeare and depictions of fictional catastrophes, so you can imagine my excitement when I learned that a novel that combines both — Emily St. John Mandel’s Station Eleven — had been adapted into a miniseries. Station Eleven depicts a catastrophic global pandemic that… Continue Reading »


Miniature models of the Globe—with Folger connections

There is a long tradition of attempting to reconstruct the 1599 Globe, the multi-level open-air playhouse where many of Shakespeare’s plays were first performed. It will always be difficult to determine various details about the 1599 Globe, which burned to the ground on June 29, 1613, at a performance of Shakespeare’s Henry VIII, when an… Continue Reading »


Athena: How Shakespeare’s plays invoke the Greek goddess of wisdom and battle strategy

We continue our “Shakespeare and Greek Myths” series with another major goddess of the Grecian pantheon, Athena. Also called Athene, Pallas, and Minerva (her Roman name), this patron of Athens was the deity devoted to wisdom, the law, and strategy as well as a supporter of the arts. Often aligning herself with heroic quests and military maneuvers, she is associated with a number of famous stories, leading to a number of allusions both direct and indirect within Shakespeare’s plays.