Shakespeare was born into not so rich circumstances. Although his mother was from an affluent family, his father had a business that did not fetch the family much. In the 1580s, Shakespeare’s father suffered failure in business. Circumstances were such that the bard had to marry at the age of 18 and thus had three extra mouths to feed. That must be the reason for his leaving for London for better fortune.

     However, soon his popularity and the acceptance of his plays made him a well-to-do man. Moreover, Shakespeare knew how to manage the money he received from his well-earned reputation. In his early years, Shakespeare did well as his plays were successful.

      Would you believe that Shakespeare ventured into the real estate business with his wealth? In fact, the bard did invest 900 pounds in a series of ambitious purchases of real estate. A good-sized house in Stratford could be resold for thirty pounds profit. The annual salary of a Stratford headmaster was just 20 pounds then. From these investments, Shakespeare must have made a return of around 75-80 pounds per year. However, did it make him extremely wealthy? It is difficult to say.

      Shakespeare did not even manage to break into the ranks of the minor local gentry in the town of Stratford-upon-Avon. This is most obvious in the marriages of his two daughters, Susanna to John Hall, and Judith to Thomas Quiney. These men were the sort of marriage partners thought inappropriate for the daughters of an aspiring gentleman. After Shakespeare’s death, neither of his sons-in-law, whose wives had inherited almost all of Shakespeare’s real and personal estate, lived out his life as a man of independent means.

     It was in 1605 that he made his highest purchase of real estate. This investment was of around 440 pounds and it doubled in value and earned him 60 pounds income each year.

     Some academics speculate that this investment gave Shakespeare the time he needed to write plays uninterrupted. However, this was also his last as he did not earn much after this.

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