Put a face on Shakespeare? You may as well try to personify the English language. reaches a disconcerting conclusion in the First Folio. Yes, he says, it would be marvellous if the engraver could have portrayed Shakespeare's wit –
But since he cannot, reader, look
Not on his picture, but his book.
Original Bard portrait unveiled
The portrait is believed to have been painted in 1610
A portrait of William Shakespeare thought to be the only picture made of the playwright during his lifetime has been unveiled in London.
It is believed the artwork dates back to 1610, six years before Shakespeare's death at the age of 52.
The newly-authenticated picture was inherited by art restorer Alec Cobbe.
The portrait will go on show at The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust in Stratford-upon-Avon from 23 April, the author's birthday.
The painting has been in the Cobbe family for centuries, through its maritial link to Shakespeare's only literary patron, Henry Wriothesley, the 3rd Earl of Southampton.
'Very fine painting'
Mr Cobbe realised the significance of the painting after visiting an exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery where he saw a portrait that had until 70 years ago been accepted as a life portrait of Shakespeare.
He immediately realised that it was a copy of the painting in his family collection.
Professor Stanley Wells, chairman of The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust, said: "The identification of this portrait marks a major development in the history of Shakespearean portraiture. This new portrait is a very fine painting."
There has long been controversy over the accuracy of some of the portraits claimed as likenesses of Shakespeare.
Experts generally agree the most accurate depictions are a bust of the playwright originally put up in Holy Trinity Church in Stratford-upon-Avon and an engraving made for the title page of the first collected edition of Shakespeare's plays.
Both are thought likely to be accurate as they were created or commissioned shortly after his death in 1616 by people who had actually met him.
從 18世紀早期起，科比家族就擁有一幅畫于1610年的畫像，但是沒人清楚畫中的男子究竟是誰。2006年，一個偶然的機會讓科比開始懷疑這幅肖像畫就是莎 士比亞的畫像，3年來經過各種方式的不斷鑒定，科比終於認定這幅畫像就是莎翁本人的畫像，畫于莎翁46歲那年，也就是他逝世前6年。
科 比的說法得到了世界上最權威的莎士比亞研究專家之一——斯坦利·威爾斯的肯定。威爾斯是英國伯明翰大學莎士比亞研究專業的名譽退休教授，任牛津大學出版社 莎士比亞著作系列總編已有30年。目前，斯坦利·威爾斯已經在畫像後背書，確認這幅畫中的主人公就是莎翁本人。
當 今世上存在兩件跟莎士比亞肖像有關的物品，被莎士比亞研究專家們普遍認為是出自莎翁同時代人之手。其一是莎翁的埋葬地、位於莎翁故鄉的聖三一教堂的莎翁半 身像，這尊半身像在他死後不久就被立在那裏；其二是1623年出版的莎翁著作“第一對開本”封面上所刻印的莎翁形象。
莎 士比亞生於1564年4月，卒于1616年4月23日，享年52歲。他是英國文藝復興時期傑出的戲劇家和詩人，是歐洲文藝復興時期人文主義文學的集大成 者，代表作有四大悲劇《哈姆雷特》、《奧賽羅》、《李爾王》、《麥克白》；四大喜劇《第十二夜》、《仲夏夜之夢》、《威尼斯商人》、《皆大歡喜》等。
Archaeologists add fragment to Bard puzzle
As the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust unveiled its portrait of the Bard painted during his lifetime, archaeologists were yesterday claiming to have beaten them to it.
A team working on the site of the long-lost venue known as The Theatre, in Shoreditch, east London, where Shakespeare acted and staged his first plays, unveiled a piece of 16th-century pottery depicting what looks like his face discovered on the site. There is no proof that the face on the fragment of Beauvais pottery is the Bard's, but insiders are excited. "We knew we'd be somewhere near Shakespeare's theatre when we got this site for our new building, and that was thrilling enough," said Penny Tuerk, a director of the Tower Theatre Company. The face may be from an ale mug sold in The Theatre's souvenir shop, she said - and might be reused when the new theatre opens in 2012.
James Burbage, father of Shakespeare's friend and business partner Richard Burbage, built The Theatre in 1576. It was just outside the walls of London among taverns and slum houses. The Burbages fell out with their landlord, and in 1598, supposedly with Shakespeare's help, they dismantled the building and took it across the Thames to Bankside where it rose again as a far more famous theatre: the Globe.