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Elizabethan fork excavated at Rose Theatre to feature on Radio 4

London SE1 website team

A fork discovered during excavations at the Rose Theatre on Bankside will be the subject of a programme presented by British Museum director Neil MacGregor on BBC Radio 4 this spring.

Starting on 16 April, Shakespeare's Restless World is a 20-part series that looks at the world through the eyes of Shakespeare's audience by exploring objects from that turbulent period.

"This series gives us a chance to understand what life was like in the turbulent world of William Shakespeare," says Neil MacGregor.

"Using 20 objects from the period – some grand, some everyday things – we can explore what the world looked like to the groundlings in the Globe and try to understand Shakespeare's restless world."

The programmes will be made permanently available to listen to online and download. The objects, from the British Museum and institutions across the UK, can be viewed in deep zoom, along with in-depth information about the object and their place in the culture and society of Shakespeare's world.

The Rose Theatre, built in 1587 by Philip Henslowe, was the first playhouse on Bankside. Its remains were discovered in Park Street in 1989. Under the stewardship of the Rose Theatre Trust the site is regularly used for theatre performances.

The fork, lent by the Museum of London, will be the subject of the programme to be broadcast on 18 April at 1.45pm and 7.45pm.

The programme on 20 April will focus on a rapier and dagger found on Bankside. These weapons, lent by the Royal Armouries in Leeds, will be used as a starting point to help address issues of culture and violence in Shakespeare's world and plays.

Many of the objects from the series will be featured in the Shakespeare: Staging the World exhibition at the British Museum this summer.

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