Top Shakespeare expert and rare artefacts come to Oxford libraries

The Shakespeare’s Dead or Alive festival celebrating the work of the Bard is continuing at Oxfordshire County Council’s libraries with talks from a leading scholar and a rare chance to view precious historical documents on special release from the Bodleian.

Leading Oxford University academic Emma Smith will be dropping in at Summertown and Cowley libraries to talk about the theme of death in Shakespeare’s time and in his plays, and visitors will be able to get up close to precious artefacts such as the 16th century ‘Bills of Mortality’ which recorded burials in London.

Emma is a world-renowned Shakespeare expert who authenticated the recently discovered ‘First Folio’ of the Bard’s plays on the island of Bute. She is visiting the libraries in connection with the Bodleian library’s popular Shakespeare’s Dead exhibition.

Rare opportunity

Oxfordshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Cultural Services Lorraine Lindsay-Gale said: “We’re delighted to be able to work with Professor Emma Smith with a rare opportunity to view precious historical items that are not normally on public display and to learn more about them. I would encourage everyone to go along to learn something new about Shakespeare and the historical context that helped to shape his work.”


Thursday 7 July, 2pm – 3pm

Shakespeare’s Dead Talk, Summertown Library, Emma Smith

Tuesday 12 July 11am - 12.00

Shakespeare’s Dead Talk, Cowley Library, Emma Smith