Believing his wife, Hermione, to be unfaithful, King Leontes of Sicilia, orders her new-born child abandoned in the wilderness. But when Hermione's fidelity is proven by the divinations of the Oracle of Delphi, Leontes is cursed to have no heir until his daughter is found. Sixteen years later, the abandoned child, now the shepherdess Perdita, returns to Sicilia seeking refuge, only to learn her true identity.
Known as "The Bard of Avon," William Shakespeare is arguably the greatest English-language writer known. Enormously popular during his life, Shakespeare's works continue to resonate more than three centuries after his death, as has his influence on theatre and literature. Shakespeare's innovative use of character, language, and experimentation with romance as tragedy served as a foundation for later playwrights and dramatists, and some of his most famous lines of dialogue have become part of everyday speech.