Shakespeare in the Time of Plague takes place in England between 1603 - 1609 a period of frequent episodes of bubonic plague, which greatly affected London and shut down the Globe and other London theaters for long stretches of time. No one was immune to the misery and death the plague produced, particularly in the poorer parishes of London. It was, also, a time when Shakespeare wrote some of his greatest plays, including Hamlet, Macbeth and Lear. Losses animate the lead characters in complicated ways in all those plays, e.g.: Hamlet loses his father and Laertes loses his father and sister; Macbeth loses his sense of honor and becomes guilt ridden because he has betrayed and killed his King and a loyal friend. Lear gives up his responsibilities and loses his children. Shakespeare may have drawn upon responses he observed in reactions to conditions of the plague.