BBC Learning English has joined forces with The Open University to bring the language of William Shakespeare to life in Shakespeare Speaks, a series of 20 short animations.

The series is part of a pan-BBC festival marking the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death.  In Shakespeare Speaks, The Bard and a cast of real and imagined characters from his life and times explain the origin and meaning of some of his most famous expressions. Each episode focuses on a specific phrase to tell a story, with the characters developing and their lives intertwining over the 20 weeks.  Real-life examples of the phrases in modern and popular use give additional context to learners.