Shakespeare’s universality his in the acceptance of life in its Fatality. He has expressed human soul with intense emotion, their own emotions – their laughter and tears, passions and prejudices, longings and aspirations. Human tastes change, values change, but Shakespeare has not been lost in oblivion. He is a greater dramatist than Ibsen or Bernard Shaw because he was a greater poet. His plays are faithful record of Elizabethan conventions, passions, prejudices and nuances of expression. Poetry, the supreme expression of imagination, therefore, has a universal appeal and Shakespeare has made excellent use of it. Shakespeare’s universality also consists in his broad humanity. A man, he believes, is a man for all that. He is not a social reformer or ambience to his point of view. Unlike Wordsworth, whose primary object was to teach, Shakespeare is not a preacher or a teacher. He has never thought of using his plays as a convenient pulpit from which to deliver sermons. Shakespeare has a friendly approach to man with all his baseness and limitations. Charity, tolerance, forgiveness are his cardinal precepts, while intolerance and revenge are anathema. Every play of Shakespeare presents the playwrights view of life. Forgiveness is undoubtedly the dominant theme of most of his works. King lear who was suffering from the chastisement of hubris banished the innocent Cordelia and later said, “pray, you now, forget and forgive.” Johnson complains that Shakespeare has no poetic justice in his play. In other words, prosperity and adversity, reward and punishment have not been distributed according to the merits and demerits of the characters. Lear, I ago in Othello, Claudius in Hamlet Macbeth and Lady Macbeth have to yield to the inexorable moral laws. Life and love are intertwined in Shakespeare’s vision, both in tragedies and comedies. Love is one of the fundamental instincts of man, shared by huts. Shakespeare concludes, “Love looks not with the eyes, but with the mind, and therefore is wing’s Cupid painted blind.”
Human nature has not changed although there have been revolutionary changes in our material aspects. Empires have fallen and risen. Social and economic orders have undergone sea changes, but the same heart-beat can be heard through the centuries. Shakespearean tragedy is a record of these eternal heart-beats. Yet we do not recoil from the tragedy which has loudly proclaimed the triumph of goodness, beauty, love and life. In fine we can say that the age of Shakespeare or the Elizabethan Age witnessed of the richest periods in the history & growth of the feelings of patriotism & nationalism among the English people, & brought about an unprecedented progress in almost all the branches of its variegated life.