What are the best plays by William Shakespeare?

asked by Anonymous
213 contributors
31 solutions
  1. 31

    #1The Tragedy of King Richard III

    The Tragedy of King Richard III
    Richard III is one of the most known plays by Shakespeare and has been adapted several times for TV and film. This version, in particular, is indicated for scholars thanks to the documentation and extensive textual for clarifying the original text in 16th Century English. 
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    Diana Parker
    Written on April 28, 2018
    "William Shakespeare has a catalog of some of the greatest plays ever written. It is very hard to pin down his "best", but The Tragedy of King Richard III is a classic and hit in it's own right. It's with the likes of Hamlet as one of the top tier plays in the world. It is definitely one of the greatest ever, and one of Shakespeare's best."
  2. 27

    #2Hamlet

    Hamlet
    This is one of the greatest plays of all times and this edition is the groundbreaking Cambridge School, established by Rex Gibson. This is the story of the tormented prince of Denmark confronted with the evidence that this uncle murdered his father. 
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    Concepción Jímenez
    Written on May 4, 2018
    "I think it goes without saying that Hamlet is a widely popular Shakespeare play. There are no other comparisons."
  3. 26

    #3King Lear

    King Lear

    King Lear was too old and tired to reign anymore, so he decided to divide his realm among his daughters: the two eldest daughters flattered him, and they were rewarded properly, but the youngest child, Cordelia, expressed her true feelings towards him, and was disinherited, what ultimately made the King lose his mind. 

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    Rosario Armenta
    Written on May 5, 2018
    "King Lear is a classic, and I think this was a pretty good response. It is one of his best, for sure, and less cliche than Romeo and Juliet."
  1. 25

    #4Titus Andronicus

    Titus Andronicus
    Titus Andronicus is the first tragedy attributed to Shakespeare and the earliest Roman play by this author. Titus has led 21 of his 25 sons to the death in wars fought by the name and glory of Rome. This edition of Titus Andronicus has been fully noted for students with guides for understanding the Shakespeare's English. 
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    Olivia Thomas
    Written on May 3, 2018
    "Titus Andronicus is one of Shakespeare's lesser known tragedies, but I'd argue it's one of his best plays. It's a bit more violent that some of his other plays, and occasionally feels more juvenile, but it's a well told story. A must for all Shakespeare fans, but also all readers!"
  2. 23

    #5Richard II

    Richard II
    This is the Oxford School Shakespeare Series version of the Richard II. This version is specially intended for 14 to 16 years old students because it's a fully annotated and explained to understand the background of England at the time of Shakespeare. 
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    Charles Carpenter
    Written on May 4, 2018
    "Richard II is one of the best plays by William Shakespeare. The story is so interesting I can't put it down after I start reading."
  3. 18

    #6Antony and Cleopatra

    Antony and Cleopatra
    Antony and Cleopatra is a historical fiction book written by William Shakespeare first published in 1606. This book contains the complete text of Antony and Cleopatra. 
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    Tyler Gonzalez
    Written on April 26, 2018
    "Antony and Cleopatra is a decent play by William Shakespeare. I would not say it's among his best like Romeo & Juliet or The Tempest, but it is still a good read. The character's real life counterparts make it worth picking up."
  4. 16

    #7Henry V

    Henry V
    Henry V is the most famous "war play" by Shakespeare. This version includes the storied victory of the English royal troops against the Franch in the battle of Agincourt. It also contains explanations, reading guide for Shakespeare's English, among other interesting content for scholars. 
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    Brenda Marshall
    Written on May 1, 2018
    "Henry V is a highly underrated Shakespeare play. It has intriguing, drama, and history. If you have read some of the more popular plays, give this a try for something different. "
  5. 6

    #8The Tempest

    The Tempest

    The Tempest is a play by the iconic medieval poet and playwright William Shakespeare. It is believed to have been written in 1610. It is about the complexities of the human mind and the gray areas in life choices.

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    Jack Scott
    Written on April 29, 2018
    "The Tempest is a true classic play by William Shakespeare. It details the human mind and thoughts as well as shades of gra vs black and white."
  6. 4

    #9A Midsummer Night's Dream

    A Midsummer Night's Dream

    A Midsummer Night's Dream is a classic romantic fantasy play by one of the most famous playwrights in history, William Shakespeare. It features love stories of mythological creatures like Theseus and Hippolyta. 

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    Carolyn Ward
    Written on May 1, 2018
    "This is by far my favorite Shakepeare play. So well written (of course), so provacative, just a gorgeous story. I would recommend A Midsummer Night's Dream as the play to use to introduce youth to Shakespeare, they'll be hooked!"
  7. 3

    #10The Merchant of Venice

    The Merchant of Venice

    The Merchant of Venice is written by William Shakespeare which centers on Bassanio trying to win the test of Portia's father in order for him to be able to marry her, and if he fails he might never marry her. 

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    Judy Andrews
    Written on May 7, 2018
    "I enjoy going to the theater from time to time and I enjoy reading plays. I recently found The Merchant of Venice and was entertained from beginning to end. Wonderful play by William Shakespeare"
  8. 3

    #11Othello

    Othello

    Othello by William Shakespeare is a drama novel first published in 1603. This book follows the story of two married couples, Othello and Desdemona, from mutual devotion to jealousy and death. This novel has a movie and a play adaptation.

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    Andrew Delgado
    Written on May 6, 2018
    "Probably, everyone has heard about Othello - one of the most well known plays by William Shakespeare. Some might even call it the best work of his and although it is very much debatable, one can not argue about the importance of this masterpiece which manages to stay relevant for centuries after the original publication. "
  9. 0

    #12As You Like It (Arden Shakespeare: Third Series)

    As You Like It (Arden Shakespeare: Third Series)

    As You Like It (The Arden Shakespeare: Third Series) is a book by William Shakespeare edited by Juliet Dusinberre. Totaling pages 449, it was first published in 1599 under ISBN-10: 1904271227 and ISBN-13: 978-1904271222.

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    Dylan Castillo
    Written on May 5, 2018
    "As You Like It, William Shakespeare, what more do we need to say. This edition gives a fresh slant and viewpoint to the play. If you like Shakespeare you won't want to miss this."
  10. 0

    #13Julius Caesar (The Arden Shakespeare: Third Series)

    Julius Caesar (The Arden Shakespeare: Third Series)

    Julius Caesar (The Arden Shakespeare: Third Series) is a book by William Shakespeare edited by Daniell. Totaling 416 pages, it was first published in 1599 under ISBN-10: 1904271227 and ISBN-13: 978-1904271222.

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    Russell Schmidt
    Written on May 14, 2018
    "This is in my mind Shakespeare’s first work. A captivating and timeless classic, this story has something that nearly everyone can relate to. In my mind this is a must read for everyone. Highly recommended!"
  11. 0

    #14Romeo And Juliet (The Arden Shakespeare: Third Series)

    Romeo And Juliet (The Arden Shakespeare: Third Series)

    Romeo And Juliet (The Arden Shakespeare: Third Series) is a book by William Shakespeare edited by René Weis. Totaling 350 pages, it was first published in 1597. The first edition was reprinted by The Arden Shakespeare in 2013.

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    Doris Fowler
    Written on May 10, 2018
    "Romeo And Juliet: Third Series is a classic novel by William Shakespeare. This major new edition of Shakespeare's greatest tragedy of love argues that that play is ultimately Juliet's. The play text is expertly edited and the on-page commentary notes discuss issues of staging, theme, meaning and Shakespeare's use of his sources to give the reader deep and engaging insights into the play. This is one of the best plays by William Shakespeare."
  12. 0

    #15Bravo Mr. William Shakespeare!

    Bravo Mr. William Shakespeare!

    Bravo, Mr. William Shakespeare! is a picture book for children by Marcia Williams. First published in 2000 by Walker Books limited, this picture book introduces children to some of the finest works from William Shakespeare.

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    Alice Morgan
    Written on May 8, 2018
    "This is good for kids learning about Shakespeare, but that's not what I wanted. I needed a collection of Shakespeare's play as is. This is more geared to helping kids understand the content. That has it's purpose, but not what I needed. "
  13. 0

    #16Tempest (The Sandman: Master of Dreams #75)

    Tempest (The Sandman: Master of Dreams #75)

    The Tempest is an adaptation of Shakespeare's novel with the same title. It was written by Neil Gaiman and illustrated by John Ridgway, Bryan Talbot, and Charles Vess, it is the 75th volume in the series: The Sandman: Master of Dreams.

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    Deborah Hanson
    Written on May 14, 2018
    "This is not by William Shakespeare, it is an adaptation of one of his novels. I really wish that adaptations and reboots would stop showing up as suggestions when searching for something else. I did read this and while it's a good book, it just wasn't what I was after. Gaiman is a great author though."
  14. 0

    #17Othello (Arden Shakespeare: Third Series)

    Othello (Arden Shakespeare: Third Series)

    Othello (The Arden Shakespeare: Third Series) is a book by William Shakespeare edited by E.A.J. Honigmann. Totaling 442 pages, it was first published in 1603 and reprinted in 2002 under ISBN-10: 1903436338 ISBN-13: 978-1903436332.

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    Louis Smith
    Written on May 13, 2018
    "I purchased this book for an English course and I enjoyed it. It was actually the first book I read from Shakespeare. I now see why others enjoy his work."
  15. 0

    #18Illustrated Stories from Shakespeare

    Illustrated Stories from Shakespeare

    Illustrated Stories From Shakespeare is a picture book for children by Rosie Dickins, Anna Claybourne, Lesley Sims, Conrad Mason, Louie Stowell, Christa Unzner-Fischer, Jana Costa, and Serena Riglietti.

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    Russell Porter
    Written on May 12, 2018
    "This book is a wonderful and gentle way to introduce Shakespeare. My kiddos loved it. We have used it several times to when we needed to remind ourselves who the characters were in the play."
  16. 0

    #19King Richard II (Arden Shakespeare: Third Series)

    King Richard II (Arden Shakespeare: Third Series)

    King Richard II (The Arden Shakespeare: Third Series) is a book by William Shakespeare edited by Charles R. Forker. Totaling 616 pages, it was first published in 1599 and reprinted by The Arden Shakespeare in 2002.

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    Brian Jackson
    Written on May 6, 2018
    "This book is an excellent way for a modern day reader to enjoy one of Shakespeare's finest works. Great footnotes that help the reader get engaged. The scholar's notes also provide some nice insight. "
  17. 0

    #20Green Tiger's Illustrated Stories from Shakespeare

    Green Tiger's Illustrated Stories from Shakespeare

    Green Tiger's Illustrated Stories from Shakespeare is a picture book for children by E. Nesbit and illustrated by Arthur Rackham. First published in 2009, this book focuses on selected works of William Shakespeare.

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    Ashley Myers
    Written on May 6, 2018
    "If you have children, this is definitely a book you'll want them to read! It introduces Shakespeare to the young, and does so very creatively. It's easy to understand and will leave your youngsters wanting to learn more and more about William Shakespeare!"
  18. 0

    #21Twelfth Night (The Arden Shakespeare: Third Series)

    Twelfth Night (The Arden Shakespeare: Third Series)

    Twelfth Night (The Arden Shakespeare: Third Series) is a book by William Shakespeare edited by Keir Elam. Totaling 448 pages, it was first published in 1599 and reprinted by The Arden Shakespeare in 2008.

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    James Boyd
    Written on May 14, 2018
    "This is one of Shakespeare's best books. Twelfth Night is a masterful play and compelling story. You will love reading this one."
  19. 0

    #22Shakespeare's Hamlet

    Shakespeare's Hamlet

    Shakespeare's Hamlet is a graphic novel adaptation of the William Shakespeare novel with the same title. Adapted by Nicki Greenberg, it was first published in 2010.

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    Joseph Reyes
    Written on May 15, 2018
    "bad solution"
  20. 0

    #23King Lear (The Arden Shakespeare: Third Series)

    King Lear (The Arden Shakespeare: Third Series)

    King Lear (The Arden Shakespeare: Third Series) is a book by William Shakespeare edited by R. A. Foakes. Totaling 455 pages, it was first published in 1603 and reprinted by Thomas Nelson Publishers in 1997.

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    Matthew Long
    Written on May 3, 2018
    "A classic read and everyone should enjoy"
  21. 0

    #24Hamlet (Arden Shakespeare: Third Series)

    Hamlet (Arden Shakespeare: Third Series)
    Hamlet (The Arden Shakespeare: Third Series) is a book by William Shakespeare edited by Ann Thompson and Neil Taylor. Totaling 613 pages, it was first published in 1603 and reprinted by Delmar in 2005.
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    Evelyn Castro
    Written on May 13, 2018
    "This is a much easier read over the original Shakespeare. While Shakespeare is beautifully written it can be hard for some to understand. This would be a great read for middle school or high school kids. "
  22. 0

    #25The Merchant of Venice: The Graphic Novel

    The Merchant of Venice: The Graphic Novel

    The Merchant of Venice: The Graphic Novel is an of William Shakespeare's novel with the same title. Adapted by John F. McDonald and illustrated by Vinod Kumar, it was first published in 2011 by Campire.

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    Alice Wan
    Written on May 14, 2018
    "This is one of my absolute favorite Shakespeare tales so I was excited to check out this version with the illustrations by Kumar. Enjoyed every minute of it! Always great to see a new interpretation of a classic, this time in the form of such a beautifully illustrated graphic novel."
  23. 0

    #26Romeo and Juliet (Graphic Novel)

    Romeo and Juliet (Graphic Novel)

    Romeo and Juliet (Graphic Novel) is an adaptation of William Shakespeare's novel with the same title. Adapted by Martin Powell and illustrated by Eva Cabrera, it was first published in 2011 by Coughlan Publishing.

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  24. 0

    #27The Tempest (The Arden Shakespeare: Third Series)

    The Tempest (The Arden Shakespeare: Third Series)

    The Tempest (The Arden Shakespeare: Third Series) is a book by William Shakespeare edited by Alden T. Vaughan and Virginia Mason Vaughan. Totaling 390 pages, it was first published in 1623 and reprinted by Bloomsbury Academic in 2011.

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    Roger Howard
    Written on May 8, 2018
    "The Tempest is one of Shakespeare's better works, going deeper into the development of the characters as well as storylines. A clever plot overall and broadly reaching prose make it a good read for all fans of the writer."
  25. 0

    #28Macbeth (The Arden Shakespeare Third Series)

    Macbeth (The Arden Shakespeare Third Series)

    Macbeth (The Arden Shakespeare: Third Series) is a book by William Shakespeare edited by Pamela Mason and Sandra Clark. Totaling 480 pages, it was first published in 1606 and reprinted by Bloomsbury Arden Shakespeare in 2015.

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    Jordan Alvarez
    Written on May 7, 2018
    "Classic work by Shakespeare which is regarded as one of, if not the, best of all his work."
  26. 0

    #29A Midsummer Night's Dream (Graphic Novel)

    A Midsummer Night's Dream (Graphic Novel)

    A Midsummer Night's Dream (Graphic Novel) is an adaptation of William Shakespeare's novel with the same title. It was adapted by Nel Yomtov and Fares Maese and illustrated by Aburtov and Bere Muniz.

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  27. 0

    #30Hamlet (No Fear Shakespeare Graphic Novels)

    Hamlet (No Fear Shakespeare Graphic Novels)
    Hamlet is an adaptation of William Shakespeare's novel with the same title. Adapted by Neil Barba, it was first published in 2008 by SparkNotes. It is the first book in the No Fear Shakespeare Graphic Novels Series.
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    Linda Stanley
    Written on May 4, 2018
    "I thought that this was an interesting offering my Amazon since it is Shakespere in Graphic Novel form. I found it interesting and bought it more out of curiosity than a real love for graphic novels. The high ratings on Amazon gave me the final push to make the purchase. I found it interesting and unique. Reading this made me want to read the actual play again. "
  28. 0

    #31A Midsummer's Night Dream (The Sandman: Master of Dreams #19)

    A Midsummer's Night Dream (The Sandman: Master of Dreams #19)

    A Midsummer's Night Dream (The Sandman: Master of Dreams #19) is a graphic novel written by Neil Gaiman and illustrated by Charles Vess. First published in 1990 by DC Comics, it is the 19th issue in The Sandman Series.

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    Dylan Bates
    Written on May 6, 2018
    "I thought the best Shakespeare play was Romeo and Juliet. This is not too bad as well, but not much of a masterpiece and longed talked about as Romeo and Juliet. "

Summary

Best What are the best plays by William Shakespeare
RankSolutionsTypeVotesPrice
1The Tragedy of King Richard IIIBooks 31 Paid
2HamletBooks 27 Paid
3King Lear Books 26 Paid
4Titus AndronicusBooks 25 Paid
5Richard IIBooks 23 Paid
6Antony and CleopatraBooks 18 Paid
7Henry VBooks 16 Paid
8The TempestBooks 6 Paid
9A Midsummer Night's DreamBooks 4 Paid
10The Merchant of VeniceBooks 3 Paid
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