Our portraits of Shakespeare may not be accurate!

There are no written descriptions of William Shakespeare himself, a fact that is slightly ironic considering how many plays he wrote. Even having written 38 plays and other works, there are very few writing about Shakespeare himself. 

We also have no proof that Shakespeare himself ever had a portrait done of himself, so our knowledge of his appearance is fairly limited Because of his fame and the lack of accurate images of Shakespeare, a number of fake Shakespeare images cropped up. Portraits of other people were often mislabeled as Shakespeare. 

It’s hard to determine exactly how these fake portraits impacted the images we now have of Shakespeare. The most accurate images of Shakespeare are considered to come from two locations: the Droeshout engravement and the Stratford monument to Shakespeare, which is the monument in his place of birth. There is a lot of speculation about Shakespeare beyond his appearance, including theories about, his religion, his sexuality, and whether he actually wrote the plays attributed to him.