100 Best Books for Children ~ Lamb

Lamb’s Tales from Shakespeare is number 66 on The Hundred Best Books for Children list found in The Book-lover.

Charles Lamb was an English essayist who along with his sister Mary interpreted the plays of Shakespeare for young readers.

Charles Lamb (1775–1834) spent most of his life as a bookkeeper, first for the South Sea Company and then for the East India Company, in London. All of his writing was done in his spare time, and he found time to see old friends and make new ones….

Both [Charles and his sister Mary] were writers, and they collaborated (worked together) on the famous Tales from Shakespeare, which have been read by boys and girls ever since.

“Some Famous British Essayists,” The Book of Knowledge

In Tales of Shakespeare the Lambs sought to bring the comedies and tragedies of Shakespeare to young readers while maintaining the language of the original. First published in 1807, the book has become a classic.

The 20 tales include:

  • “The Tempest.”
  • “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.”
  • “Much Ado About Nothing.”
  • “As You Like It.”
  • “The Merchant of Venice.”
  • “King Lear.”
  • “Macbeth.”
  • “All’s Well That Ends Well.”
  • “The Comedy of Errors.”
  • “Romeo and Juliet.”
  • “Hamlet.”

The following Tales are meant to be submitted to the young reader as an introduction to the study of Shakespeare, for which purpose his words are used whenever it seemed possible to bring them in; and in whatever has been added to give them the regular form of a connected story, diligent care has been taken to select such words as might least interrupt the effect of the beautiful English tongue in which he wrote: therefore, words introduced into our language since his time have been as far as possible avoided.

Preface, Tales From Shakespeare

We first added this book to our collection over 10 years ago! You’ll find our favorite go-along resources there:

Tales from Shakespeare: A Unit Study

Tales From Shakespeare: A Unit Study {Free eBook}
Our unit with links to the free eBook along with other resources.

Free eBook
  • Read the book aloud, one story at a time.
  • Since there are 20 stories, you can vary your readings with poetry, fairy tales, or other stories.
  • Ask for oral narrations. Have your child tell the story in his own words.
  • Shakespeare coined many words we use today. Have your child make a list of ten or more. You’ll find resources in our unit to aid you in this.
  • Learn more about the Globe Theater where the plays were performed.
  • Create an author page for Charles Lamb (and/or Shakespeare) (along with the other authors in our series).

Additional Resources

Author Notebooking Pages {Free Download}
Use this free set to create an author notebook for our 100 Best Books for Children series.

The Hundred Best Books for Children ~ Introduction
The Hundred Best Books for Children

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