Excerpt: The Private Life of William Shakespeare

Lena Cowen Orlin, the Folger Institute’s former Executive Director, illuminates key parts of Shakespeare’s life in her new book, from his father and his wedding to his home, will, and memorial bust; the replica of the bust shown here is at the Folger.



Folger Finds: Edwin Booth’s royal tunic

Marking the anniversary of actor Edwin Booth’s birth on November 13, 1833, we explore a stunning historical costume from the Folger collection: an embroidered-velvet tunic that Booth wore onstage as King Richard III.


Order It: Mark Antony’s “Friends, Romans, countrymen”

Interested in politics and communication? Try our quiz and rearrange the lines of Mark Antony’s “Friends, Romans, countrymen” speech from Julius Caesar, a famous passage from Shakespeare’s plays and a brilliant example of political oratory.


Baz Luhrmann’s Romeo + Juliet turns 25

Carla Della Gatta writes about Baz Luhrmann’s movie Romeo + Juliet, starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Claire Danes, which became an indelible version for Gen X, Gen Y, and even Gen Z. In homage to West Side Story, it Latin-izes the Capulets, including Tybalt, played by John Leguizamo.