THE WINTER'S TALE contains one of the most famous stage directions in English literary history: "Exit, pursued by a bear." Some speculate that, because the Elizabethan theaters were in the same neighborhood as "bear baiting" pits, it's possible that one or more performances featured a live bear. But it seems more likely that an actor dressed up in a bear costume and chased Antigonus across the stage.
Some critics believe that Leontes's jealous behavior toward Hermione is a thinly veiled allegory about King Henry VIII's second wife, Anne Boleyn, who was beheaded after being tried and convicted of adultery in 1536.
Bohemia is completely landlocked, but Shakespeare either didn't know or didn't care. At points in the play, the characters refer to or are sent to both the coast and the desert, neither or which actually exist in Bohemia.