Edward Alleyn (1566-1626) was an actor in early London who founded of Dulwich College. He was known for his physical size and handle of commanding parts. Born in 1566, he was characterized as a “bred a Stage-player” even though that his family was not focused on theater. He is known for his performance at the Rose Theatre as part of the Lord Admiral’s Men. He became friends with Philip Henslowe, the founder of the Rose Theater. They made theatrical investments together. Henslowe became Alleyn’s step father in law when he married his step daughter. Alleyn was famous for his roles in Christopher Marlowe’s plays. He made a lasting impact off stage building and managing an orphanage. He also built the pensioners’ home called the College of God’s Gift at Dulwich. Today this is Dulwich College. Alleyn’s wife died and was buried in Dulwich College chapel. Afterwards, Alleyn married the daughter of John Donne, poet and dean of St. Paul’s Cathedral. Years later, Alleyn traveled with the intention of purchasing property, but on November 13, 1626 Alleyn would write out his last will and testament. He was buried two weeks later in the Dulwich College chapel.
Author: Chad Mead (Stonehill)
Editor: Seamus Bruno