Samuel Daniel, poet and playwright, was almost
Shakespeare’s exact contemporary. Born only two years earlier than
Shakespeare he survived him by just three.
In 1592 Daniel issued a collection of his sonnets under the title Delia.
This collection included one entitled “The Complaint of
Rosamond” echoes of which have been found in Shakespeare’s The Rape
of Lucrece, Love’s Labour’s Lost and Romeo and Juliet. The
year following he wrote a play, The Tragedie of Cleopatra, and
Shakespeare’s Cleopatra appears to be more closely modeled on Daniel’s
By 1595, however, Daniel turned to writing history and
published the first four books of Civil Wars, his account of
contests between the houses of York and Lancaster, which was surely among
Shakespeare’s sources for Henry IV.
Civil Wars (First Four Books). First edition. 1595.
Works. 1602. Includes The Tragedie of Cleopatra and The Complaint of Rosamond.