A study reveals a shocking side to Shakespeare.
A new study from Aberystwyth University on the life of the playwright William Shakespeare shows that he was a wealthy landowner and businessman, who broke the law to accumulate his fortune.
It also shows another side of Shakespeare, claiming that he was prosecuted several times for hoarding food illegally and for tax evasion.
According to court records and tax files, Shakespeare bought grain, barley and malt that he stored and resold for inflated prices when there was a shortage.
He even wrote a play based on a peasant revolt over grain hoarding that happened around 1607.
His questionable business practices allowed him to retire as the largest property owner in Stratford-upon-Avon after working for only 24 years of his life.
There are many theories and questions about who William Shakespeare really was.
One theory claims that Shakespeare was actually a group of people writing plays and publishing them under the pseudonym of William Shakespeare.
Another theory suggests that the playwright known as William Shakespeare was actually Edward de Vere, the 17th Earl of Oxford.
Although little evidence supports this theory, it is the subject of a Hollywood motion picture called Anonymous.