The First Englishman to Reach Japan

Hi everyone!

Since May is Asian Heritage Month, I thought I’d devote this week to the long and fascinating history of cultural exchange between Shakespeare and Asia. First, you can read my post on China and Shakespeare here: Chinese New Year post: China and Shakespeare

Secondly, I’d like to post a shoutout to fellow Shakespearean podcaster Cassidy Cash, who in her fascinating podcast That Shakespeare Life, she interviews a historian about the first contact between England and Japan; a sailor named William Adams who reached Japan in 1600, (the same year Shakespeare wrote about “The undiscovered country” in Hamlet). Adams helped build the first western ships in Japan, and helped start trade between Japan and the west:

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