The value of a structure has a lot to do with what it represents, and in the case of the Globe Theater, it represents a modern homage to what many believe to be the greatest writer who ever lived, William Shakespeare. The original Globe Theater burned down in 1613, and there were big problems in trying to recreate a historic Elizabethan playhouse, from determining what it probably looked like to rediscovering where it should be situated geographically.
With the help of many historians, architects and other experts, American actor Sam Wanamaker spearheaded the effort to rebuild the Globe on or near its original site. Without a wealthy patron or the help of the British government, the project was completely financed by private donations. It was a labor of love and a potent illustration of the enduring power that buildings have to stir passions, enliven discourse and honor the past [source: Howells].
On the next page, we'll explore one of Michelangelo's triumphs, the Piazza del Campidoglio.