University of Chichester

02/02/2017 | News release | Distributed by Public on 02/02/2017 03:00

University scholar unearths new evidence about Shakespeare in London

NEW evidence about history's most celebrated playwright and how sixteenth-century London influenced his work is to be revealed at an open lecture in the University of Chichester.

Shakespeare scholar Professor Duncan Salkeld, of the institution's Department of English and Creative Writing, will present his latest research based on the records of Elizabethan prisons.

The 90-minute seminar, on Wednesday 15 February, is part of a series of public lectures highlighting the research of acclaimed academics, scientists, and authors of the University.

Professor Salkeld said: 'Stratford made the man but London made the phenomenon even if, at the end of his writing career, Shakespeare felt himself an outsider in the great metropolis.

'This lecture will explore outline details of London life and aspects of Shakespeare's work within that context. It will also present new evidence regarding the earliest playhouses.'

The research, which is based on the 400-year-old records of the notorious Bridewell prison, focuses partly on the recently-excavated Curtain Theatre in Shoreditch.

Professor Salkeld will also talk about the murky politics behind Shakespeare's creation of the character Falstaff.

He added: 'There are some real horror stories from the prison records including knife fights, gang wars, and diseases - London in the sixteenth century was a grim place.

'It is astonishing that Shakespeare not only survived the plague and other diseases but one of the most dangerous periods of the capital's history.'

The lecture, which starts at 6:30pm, will be held at the University's Mitre Lecture Theatre at its Bishop Otter campus in Chichester, PO19 6PE.

Tickets are free for all but should be reserved in advance at

For more about Professor Duncan Salkeld and his extensive research into the life and work of Shakespeare go to

Alternatively for more about the forthcoming public lecture series at the University of Chichester held across the year email [email protected].