Thomas Dekker Timeline

1572?—   Thomas Dekker born in London of unknown parentage.
1580 - 88?Presumably attends grammar school.
1589 - 93?Probably serves as a seaman or as an apprentice to a tradesman.
1592?- 93?Marriage.
1594A child of "Thomas Dycker" is baptized in St. Giles, Cripplegate.
1593?- 95?Probably begins to write for the actors, particularly Henslowe's clients,the Lord Admiral's Men.
1598Henslowe first mentions Dekker by name in January. Francis Mere listsDekker among the best English writers of tragedy. Early in February, Dekker is inprison for debt.
1599Arrested on January 30, for debt to the Lord Chamberlain's Men; Henslowe discharges debt.
1600 - 01Writes for the Children of Paul's company; drawn into the Stage Quarrel against Jonson. Writes occasionally for Henslowe, that is, for the Lord Admiral's Men.
1602 Writes on a full-time basis for Henslowe.
1603 Composes much of the script for The Magnificent Entertainment Given toKing James.
1603 - 04  Composes two pamphlets on the cause and the misery of plague.
1604 - 06  Resumes playwriting for Henslowe, the Children of Paul's and probablyalso the Prince's Men. Collaborates with Middleton (at least two plays) and withWebster (two).
1606 - c.1609Quarrel with the Prince's Men at the Fortune Theatre; Children ofPaul's company collapses. Dekker writes prose tracts.
1610-12Returns to playwriting, apparently for the Queen's Men at the Red BullTheater; continues to write tracts and at least on Lord Mayor's show. Moves fromCripplegate to Clerkenwell, near the Red Bull.
1613-19Confined in King's Bench prison for debt.
1620-24Writes for the Red Bull Company (now called "Players of the Revels"), forthe Palsgrave's Men, and possibly for others. Collaborates with Massinger, Day,Ford, Webster, and others.
1625Death of King James; plague causes closing of the theaters, reorganization ofthe acting companies. Publishes tract.
1626-29Indicted for recusancy, probably because of absence from church toavoid arrest for debt. Composes three tracts; writes at least two Lord Mayor's shows;revises or composes several plays.
1630Resurgence of the plague leads Dekker to publish two more pamphlets.
1631Probably returns to playwriting; assignment of plays to this year is conjectural.
1632Buried on August 25 at St. James's parish, Clerkenwell.

Price, George R. Thomas Dekker.
New York: Twayne, 1969. 14-15.


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Created by Anniina Jokinen on December 15, 1999. Last updated September 2, 2006.