Tuesday, 29 June 2010
On this day...
The Globe Theatre, home to some of Shakespeare's most famous plays, was burnt down in 1613. Owned by the Chamberlain's Men, of whom Shakespeare comprised one of the six monetary partners, the Globe, or at least its timber had previously existed in another form. For the company, due to a dispute over the lease, had dismantled their previous home, The Theatre in 1598, and ferried it beam by beam across the Thames to its new Southwark home.
However, it was destined not to last, and only 15 years later the building was in flames. During a performance of 'Henry VIII', a technical malfunction caused a cannon to misfire, its sparks catching the thatched roof and reportedly destroying the building in only an hour. Contemporary reports state that all were unharmed, except for one gentlemen, whose burning breeches were put out by a bottle of ale. Hopefully tonight's performance of the same play in the reconstructed Globe will pass without such incident.