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 than Plutarch’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.