Comedies, Histories and Tragedies.

Shakespeare (William)

Comedies, Histories and Tragedies.

Published according to the true Original Copies. Unto which is added, Seven Plays, Never before Printed in Folio ...

Description: magnificent engraved portrait by Martin Droeshout above the verses To the Reader on verso of the first leaf, title with fleur-de-lis device (McKerrow 263), double column text within typographical rules, woodcut initials, frontispiece skilfully repaired at inner margin, a tear (repaired) in the top inner corner just passing through the engraved surface for about 1 cm (hatched area), title-page with tears repaired, 2 small lacunae filled in, some of the repaired tears passing through letters but without loss, paperflaw in *Bbb1 with the loss of 7 letters on the recto and several more on the verso (failure to print), water-staining in the inner margins at the beginning, diminishing until absent in gathering E, intermittant water-staining in the lower margins, last leaf mounted and defective at head and foot without loss of text, minor worming strictly in the fore-margin in the third pagination, a few ink splashes here and there, and the odd small rust hole, tears in lower margin of *Bbb6 with loss to blank margin (not affecting text), another to Kkk4 entering the text but without loss, [xii], 96, 99-160, 163-254, 243 [i.e. 253]-272, [2], 328, 303, [1], folio (362 x 235 mm), modern panelled calf over old boards (by James Brockman), spine richly gilt, contrasting lettering pieces ('Shakespear' as per the title-page), black-velvet-lined maroon buckram folding box with a black lettering piece ('Shakespeare'), good

Publication Details: Printed for H. Herringman, E. Brewster, and R. Bentley, 1685

Notes: In general a good copy of the Fourth Folio, the last of the 17th-century editions of Shakespeare's works, edited by John Heminge (d. 1630) and Henry Condell (d. 1627), the seven plays added by Philip Chetwin (d. 1680), publisher of the Third Folio: the title variant here (no priority) omits Chetwin's name. A tall copy at 14½ inches (cf. the 2 Pforzheimer copies: 910 at 14, and 911 at 13¼). Of the seven added plays only Pericles is now seriously considered to have any Shakespearian connection. In spite of the 'Never before Printed' of the title-page the seven extra plays were in fact included...more

Bibliography: (Bartlett 123; Gregg III, p. 1119; Jaggard p. 497; Pforzheimer 910; Wing S2915; see PMM for the First Folio - a remarkably succinct entry).

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Price: £85,000

Subject: Literature

Published Date: 1685

Stock Number: 54091

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