Wherefore art thou factoid? To celebrate the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death, Time magazine writers Sarah Begley and Merrill Fabray collaborated with designer Heather Jones to create a brilliant, colorful infographic packed with amusing factoids highlighting the Bard’s enduring impact on culture. Titled, “Will’s Testament, 400 Years On,” the infographic lists each of Shakespeare’s plays in the order they were published (more or less), surrounded by relevant trivia. Like one of the Swan of Avon’s plays, it takes some time to read and digest. Bookshelf presents Time’s list of 36 plays broken up into tasty morsels of nine plays in four parts. Friends, Romans, countrymen, lend me your ears; I come to praise Shakespeare, not dismiss him, with thy trivia:
1915: T.S. Eliot references the play in his poem The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock
1975: Woody Allen references the play in his film Love and Death
1994: The plot of The Lion King alludes to the play
1996: The play inspired the title of David Foster Wallace’s nearly 1,000-page magnum opus Infinite Jest
1930: A line from the play inspired the title of W. Somerset Maugham’s novel Cakes and Ale
2006: The play was adapted by Karen Lutz and Kirsten Smith into the film, She’s the Man
Troilus and Cressida
1997: The title of Green Day’s song “Good Riddance (Time of Your Life)” is inspired from a line in the play.
Measure for Measure
1833: The play was the inspiration for Alexander Pushkin’s poem, Angelo
1836: The play was the inspiration for Richard Wagner’s opera Das Leibesverbot
1887: Giuseppe Verdi adapted the play into the opera Otello
1992: Disney named the parrot in Aladdin after Iago
2011: Toni Morrison’s play Desdemona was inspired by the play
Timon of Athens
1962: A line from the play inspired the title of Vladimir Nabokov’s Pale Fire
1985: Akira Kurosawa adapted the play into the landmark film, Ran
1929: A line from the play inspired the title of William Faulkner’s The Sound and the Fury
1962: Ray Bradbury borrowed a phrase from the play for the title of his novel, Something Wicked This Way Comes
1990: The play inspired characters and scenes from HBO’s House of Cards
Antony and Cleopatra
1954: The title for Dorothy Reynolds’ and Julian Slade’s musical, Salad Days, is taken from a line in the play
Read related posts: The Most Common Myths About Shakespeare
Shakespeare the Pop Song Writer
Random Fascinating Facts About Shakespeare
Most Common Nicknames for Shakespeare
Most Beautiful Books of Shakespeare’s Sonnets
Were Shakespeare’s Sonnets Written to a Young Man?
What Dictionary Did Shakespeare Use?
Shakespeare’s Portrait as A Young Man Discovered
For further reading: Time Magazine, “Will’s Testament, 400 Years On,” by Sarah Begley and Merrill Fabry, April 11, 2016.