William Shakespeare had a unique style of weaving the stories in his plays. He has written some of the best sonnets and plays till date and has explored a variety of themes ranging from betrayal to romance. Due to the popularity of his work, many of Shakespeare’s plays have been made into movies while several others have been translated into hundreds of different languages. Scroll more to know about the Top 10 Most Popular Shakespeare’s Plays.
Top Ten Most Popular Shakespeare’s Plays
Hamlet is a tragic play by William Shakespeare based on the young prince of Denmark of the same name. The play is regarded as the best of Shakespeare’s work with five perfect soliloquies delivered by Hamlet over the course of the play. Hamlet has been portrayed as a tragic figure as he finds out that his father has been assassinated and his mother remarries the assassin, his uncle. Hamlet is Shakespeare’s longest play and among the most powerful and influential tragedies in all of English literature.
2. Romeo and Juliet
Counted among one of the best Shakespeare plays in history, Romeo and Juliet is a tragedy which is still adored by teenage lovers for being a romantic epic story. Its plot is based on an Italian tale, depicting two young star-crossed lovers whose end ultimately reconcile their feuding families. Along with Hamlet, it is one of his most frequently performed plays. Today, the title characters are regarded as archetypal young lovers.
Macbeth is one of the darkest and most powerful tragedies among Shakespeare’s plays. Set in Scotland, the play dramatises the corroding psychological and political effects produced when its protagonist, the Scottish lord Macbeth, chooses evil as the way to fulfil his ambition for power. It is frequently performed at both amateur and professional levels and has been adapted for opera, film, books, stage and screen. The whole play deals with the whirlwind tale of assassination, betrayal, and lusty ambition.
4. Julius Caesar
This play is about the determined Roman tyrant and concentrates mainly on the consequences of his assassination. Marcus Brutus is the central character who fights with his codes of respect, faithfulness and nationalism. It is one of several Roman plays that Shakespeare wrote, based on true events from Roman history and is influential enough to be among Shakespeare plays list. Concluded to be written in 1599, the play deals with actual fable of Roman political conflict, occurred during the 44 BC and still continues to dominate the writing genre of friendship, patriotism and honour.
5. The Tempest
Written between 1610 and 1611, this play of William Shakespeare is considered as his last work, according to most scholars. It’s still gorgeous to read this novel with an extreme romantic expression. It is set on a remote island, where Prospero, the rightful Duke of Milan, plots to restore his daughter Miranda to her rightful place using illusion and skillful manipulation. To do so he conjures up a storm, the eponymous tempest.
6. Midsummer Night’s Dream
Portraying the events surrounding the marriage of the Duke of Athens, Theseus, and the Queen of the Amazons, Hippolyta, Midsummer Night’s Dream was written between 1590 and 1596. Like the other Shakespearean works, this play has deserved a lot of appreciation and has been performed on stage by actors all over the world. Categorised as a Comedy, the play is themed with popular concepts such as love, problem with time, loss of individual identity and feminism.
Othello is another well known tragedy by Shakespeare that has been included in the top 10 most popular Shakespeare’s play. The themes of racism, love, jealousy and betrayal has been beautifully sketched through its main characters – Othello, his wife Desdemona, his lieutenant Cassio and his trusted adviser Iago. Though it was approximately written in 1603, it remains relevant to the present day and is often performed in professional and community theatres alike.
8. Much Ado about Nothing
Much Ado about Nothing is a comedy about two pairs of lovers, Benedick and Beatrice, and Claudio and Hero. The happy conclusion of Much Ado about Nothing is the reason the play has been classified as a comedy. However, the true humour in the drama is left to the remarkable collection of supporting characters that dazzle audiences and readers with wit and confound them with absurdity.
Better known as Shakespeare’s most astonishing comedy, The Taming of the Shrew was written between 1590 and 1594, which deals with the submission of a woman to her husband. With cheerful feeling and slapstick humor, this play continues to rule the heart of readers. The play might have confronted a number of arguments for years but the subject matter has motivated a many to perform it for audience.
10. Merchant of Venice
Though classified as a comedy in the First Folio and sharing certain aspects with Shakespeare’s other romantic comedies, the play is perhaps most remembered for its dramatic scenes. It is best known for Shylock, who is the play’s most prominent and most famous character. The popular plot of the play has inspired many films, operas and other cultural references across the globe.