Donne, John Timeline

Year Historical Literary Author
1572 St Bartholomew's Day massacre of Huguenots in France Birth of John Donne
1576 The Theatre - first purpose-built playhouse in London James Burbage builds first permanent English playhouse, The Theatre in London.
1577 Sir Francis Drake sails around the world. Holinshed publishes his Chronicles, the main source of Shakespeare's historical material.
1579 North's translation of Plutarch's Lives
Spenser's The Shepherd's Calendar
1583 Queen's Men acting company formed
1584 First English colony in America established by Sir Walter Raleigh at Roanoke Island, Virginia Donne goes to Oxford University
1586 (Catholic) Mary Queen of Scots tried for treason against (Protestant) Queen Elizabeth of England. Sir Philip Sidney dies
1587 Mary Queen of Scots executed in England.
Pope proclaims crusade against England
Performances of Kyd's The Spanish Tradgedy
Rose Theatre built in London
1588 Spanish Armada sent in retaliation of Mary Queen of Scots, defeated in battle. Lyly's Endymion Donne possibly at Cambridge University
1589 Hakluyt's Voyages published
1590 Spenser's Faerie Queene (I-III) published
Sidney's Countess of Pembroke's Arcadia
1591 Increasing persecution of Catholics Kyd writes The Spanish Tragedy, thought to have a strong influence on Shakespeare's Hamlet.
Sidney's Astrophil and Stella
Donne goes to Thavies Inn as law student

Donne goes to Lincoln's Inn to study law.  

1593 Theatres closed because of plague

Acting group The Lord Chamberlain's Men re-established, of which Shakespeare is a leading member. They use the Theatre as their playhouse.

Sir Philip Sidney's Apology for Poetry published
Hooker's Of the Laws of the Ecclesiastical Polity I-IV
Nashe's The Unfortunate Traveller
1595 Sidney's An Apology for Poetry (or The Defence of Poesy)
Spenser's Amoretti
1596 Essex attacks Cadiz Spenser's Faerie Queene (IV-VI) published
Second Blackfriars Theatre opened by Burbage

Donne on Cadiz expedition.  

1597 New Poor Law Bacon's Essays published

The lease on The Theatre expires. James and Richard Burbage dismantle the building and move the materials to another site in order to rebuild it.

1598 Death of Philip II Donne appointed Secretary to Egerton
1599 Earl of Essex, former favourite of Queen Elizabeth, arrested for failure to carry out her policies in Ireland
Oliver Cromwell born
The Globe Theatre built on south bank of the Thames
Edmund Spenser dies
1600 East India Company founded Shakespeare's first tragedies performed
1601 Following an attempted uprising, Earl of Essex beheaded for treason 'War of the Theatres' - Jonson, Thomas Dekker, John Marston Donne secretly gets married to Anne More and is dismissed from Egerton's service. He becomes M.P.
1603 Elizabeth dies; succeeded by James VI of Scotland, who becomes James I of England

Plague in London and theatres are closed again

Lord Chamberlain's Men become The King's Men, and frequently perform at court
1604 Hampton Court conference
1605 Gunpowder plot. Arrest and execution of Guy Fawkes Cervantes' Don Quixote pt 1

 Shakespeare's King Lear


Cyril Tourneur The Revenger's Tragedy

1607 Appearance of Halley's comet
Founding of Jamestown, Virginia
Tourneur's The Revenger's Tragedy published
Francis Beaumont and John Fletcher's The Knight of the Burning Pestle
Donne's Divine Poems
1610 Galileo reports on his findings with the telescope
Galileo The Starry Messenger
Beaumont's and Fletcher's The Maid's Tragedy
1611 Authorised (or King James') Version of the Bible
Chapman, translation of Homer's lliad
Donne's First Anniversarie printed
1612 Death of Henry, Prince of Wales.
Prince Charles becomes heir to the throne
Donne's Of the Progress of the Soul
1613 Globe theatre fire

The Globe Theatre burns down after catching fire during a performance of Henry VIII. The fire was started by a spark from a cannon which was used for sound effects.

1614 Globe theatre rebuilt after fire in previous year Chapman, translation of Homer's Odyssey (-1615) Donne elected M. P. for Taunton
1615 Cervantes's Don Quixote pt 2 Donne becomes Church of England priest. Receives D.D. from Cambridge University
1616 Lectures on the circulation of the blood by William Harvey in London Jonson's Works
Death of Cervantes
1617 Anne Donne dies
1618 Sir Walter Raleigh executed
Beginning of the Thirty Years' War (to 1648)
1620 Pilgrim Fathers to Massachussetts in the Mayflower
1621 Bacon dismissed from office
Performances of Philip Massinger's A New Way to Pay Old Debts
Thomas Middleton's Women Beware Women

Donne Dean of St.Paul's Cathedral, London.  

1622 Performance of Middleton's The Changeling

Donne's Devotions upon Emergent Occasions.  

1625 James I dies. Charles I becomes king. Charles marries Henrietta Maria of France
1626 War with France Bacon dies
1628 John Bunyan born
Laud appointed Bishop of London
Buckingham assassinated
1629 Charles I suspends Parliament and has Sir John Eliot among other leaders imprisoned
1630 Future Charles II is born
1631 Bishop Laud enforces uniformity to the Church of England John Dryden born March 31: Donne dies
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