Shakespearean scholars, beginning with Edmond Malone in 1778, have attempted to reconstruct the relative chronology of Shakespeare's oeuvre by various means, using external evidence (such as references to the plays by Shakespeare's contemporaries in both critical material and private documents, allusions in other plays, entries in the Stationers' Register, and records of performance and publication), and internal evidence (allusions within the plays to contemporary events, composition and publication dates of sources used by Shakespeare, stylistic analysis looking at the development of his style and diction over time, and the plays' context in the contemporary theatrical and literary milieu). Most modern chronologies are based on the work of E.K. Chambers in "The Problem of Chronology" (1930), published in his book William Shakespeare: A Study of Facts and Problems, Vol. I.
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Macbeth is a Jacobean play, through and through. It celebrates the accession of James VI & I, and his descent through a true line of Scottish kings, foreseen to “stretch out to the crack of doom.” In the vision… go to article