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Hidden Voices Exhibition

The Lives of the Women Who Made Shakespeare

A new exhibition at Shakespeare’s New Place

Join us in Spring 2024 at Shakespeare’s New Place, the site of the grandest house in Jacobean Stratford-upon-Avon, and explore the stories of life and loss, commerce and healing as we explore the hidden voices of the remarkable women who lived and worked here together.

Using objects from our collection, including artefacts from the late 16th and early 17th centuries, we will explore the impact of these women, as mothers, wives, widows, businesswomen and managers of a grand and busy household at New Place.

Meet the Women Who Made Shakespeare

  • Mary Shakespeare (nee Arden) - Shakespeare’s mother
  • Anne Shakespeare (nee Hathaway) Shakespeare’s wife
  • Susanna Hall (nee Shakespeare) Shakespeare’s eldest daughter
  • Judith Quiney (nee Shakespeare) Shakespeare’s youngest daughter, and twin of Hamnet (d. 1596)
  • Elizabeth Barnard (nee Hall, Nashe) Susanna’s daughter, Shakespeare’s granddaughter 

They are all connected to William by blood or marriage, but as you will see when you visit, there is more to discover about each of these fascinating women.

We will also dispel many of the myths that have persisted over the centuries; that William didn’t love Anne, because he left her the ‘second best bed’, that Susanna was the favourite, that Judith was illiterate and that because Mary was a farmer’s daughter, she was less upwardly mobile.

Part of our multi-year theme, The Women Who Made Shakespeare.


Hidden Voices: The Lives of the Women Who Made Shakespeare will open on March 16 at Shakespeare's New Place.

Access to the exhibition is included in your admission price to Shakespeare’s New Place and the Shakespeare’s Story ticket, giving you access to all three of Shakespeare’s family homes for one great price.

>> Book your ticket

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