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No. 2.

CHRONOLOGICAL ORDER

IN WHICH

THE PLAYS OF SHAKSPEARE

ARE SUPPOSED TO HAVE BEEN WRITTEN, ACCORDING TO THE

ARRANGEMENTS OF

CHALMERS, MALONE, AND DR. DRAKE.

The

Chalmers and Malone reject Titus Andronicus, | poses it to have been produced in 1590. and Pericles, as spurious. Dr. Drake does not notice the former play, but, on the authority of Dryden, admits the latter as genuine, and sup

dates which they severally ascribe to the remaining plays are as follows:

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No. 3.

A

EDITIONS OF SHAKSPEARE'S WORKS.

Of the following plays, editions were printed during the life-time of Shakspeare.

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Lord Chamberlaine to the Kings most Excellent Majesty, and Philip Earle of Montgomery, &c. Gentleman of his Majesties Bed-chamber. Both Knights of the Most Noble Order of the Garter, and our singular good Lords.

Right Honourable,

Whilst we studie to be thankful in our particular, for the many favours we have received from your L. L. we are falne upon the ill fortune, to mingle two the most diverse things that can bee,

and feare of the successe. feare and rashnesse; rashnesse in the enterprize, For, when we valew the places your H. H. sustaine, we cannot but know their dignity greater, then to descend to the reading of these trifles: and, while we name them trifles, we have depriv'd ourselves of the defence of our Dedication. But since your L. L. have been pleased to thinke these trifles some

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thing, heeretofore, and have prosequuted both them, and their Authour living, with so much favour: we hope that (they out-living him, and he not having the fate, common with some, to be exequutor to his owne writings) you will use the same indulgence toward them, you have done unto their parent. There is a great difference, whether any booke choose his Patrones, or finde them: This hath done both. For, so much were your L. L. likings of the severall parts, when they were acted, as before they were published, the Volume ask'd to be yours. We have but collected them, and done an office to the dead, to procure his Orphanes, Guardians; without ambition either of selfe-profit, or fame: onely to keepe the memory of so worthy a Friend, and Fellow alive, as was our SHAKESPEARE, by humble offer of his playes, to your most noble patronage. Wherein, as we have justly observed, no man to come neere your L. L. but with a kind of religious addresse, it hath bin the height of our care, who are the Presenters, to make the present worthy of your H. H. by the perfection. But, there we must also crave our abilities to be considered, my Lords. We cannot go beyond our owne powers. Country hands reach foorth milke, creame, fruites, or what they have: and many Nations (we have heard) that had not gummes and incense, obtained their requests with a leavened Cake. It was no fault to approch their Gods by what meanes they could: And the most, though meanest, of things are made more precious, when they are dedicated to Temples. In that name therefore, we most humbly consecrate to your H. H. these remaines of your servant SHAKESPEARE; that what delight is in them may be ever your L. L. the reputation his, and the faults ours, if any be committed, by a payre so carefull to shew their gratitude both to the living, and the dead, as is

Your Lordshippes most bounden,
JOHN HEMINGE,
HENRY CONdell.

The Preface of the Players. Prefixed to the first folio edition, published in 1623.

To the great variety of Readers, From the most able, to him that can but spell: there you are number'd. We had rather you were weigh'd. Especially, when the fate of all Bookes depends upon your capacities: and not of your heads alone, but of your purses. Well! it is now publique, and you wil stand for your priviledges wee know: to read, and censure. Do so, but buy it first. That doth best commend a Booke, the Stationer saies. Then, how odde soever your braines be, or your wisdomes, make your licence the same, and spare not. Judge your sixe-pen'orth, your shillings worth, your five shillings worth at a time, or higher, so you

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rise to the just rates, and welcome. But, whatever you do, Buy. Censure will not drive a Trade, or make the Jacke go. And though you be a Magistrate of wit, and sit on the Stage at Black-Friers, or the Cock-pit, to arraigne Playes dailie, know, these Playes have had their triall alreadie, and stood out all Appeales; and do now come forth quitted rather by a Decree of Court, than any purchas'd Letters of commendation.

It had bene a thing, we confesse, worthie to have bene wished, that the Author himselfe had lived to have set forth, and overseen his owne writings; But since it hath bin ordain'd otherwise, and he by death departed from that right, we pray you, doe not envie his Friends, the office of their care and paine, to have collected and publish'd them; and so to have publish'd them, as where (before) you were abus'd with divers stolne, and surreptitious copies, maimed and deformed by the frauds and stealthes of injurious impostors, that expos'd them: even those are now offer'd to your view cur'd, and perfect of their limbes; and all the rest, absolute in their numbers, as he conceived the: Who, as he was a happie imitator of Nature, was a most gentle expresser of it. His mind and hand went together: and what he thought, he uttered with that easinesse, that wee have scarse received from him a blot in his papers. But it is not our province, who onely gather his works, and give them you, to praise him. It is yours that reade him. And there we hope, to your divers capacities, you will finde enough, both to draw, and hold you: for his wit can no more lie hid, then it could be lost. Reade him, therefore; and againe, and againe: And if then you doe not like him, surely you are in some manifest danger, not to understand him. And so we leave you to other of his Friends, whom if you need, can bee your guides: if you neede them not, you can leade yourselves, and others. And such readers we wish him.

JOHN HEMINGE, HENRIE CONdell.

Steevens, with some degree of probability, supposes these prefaces to be the productions of Ben Jonson.

In 1632, the works of Shakspeare were reprinted in folio by Thomas Cotes, for Robert Allot. Of this edition Malone speaks most contemptuously, though many of the errors of the first are corrected in it, and he himself silently adopted 186 of its corrections without acknowledging the debt. The judgment passed by Steevens on this edition is, "Though it be more incorrectly printed than the preceding one, it has likewise the advantage of various readings, which are not merely such as reiterature of copies will naturally produce. The curious examiner of

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10 vols.

Shakspeare's text, who possesses the first of these, | Octavo, Johnson and Steevens, London, 1778, ught not to be unfurnished with the second.' The third folio was printed in 1664, for P. C. And a fourth, for H. Herringham, E. Brewster, and R. Bentley, in 1682.

As to these impressions,' says Steevens, 'they are little better than waste paper, for they differ only from the preceding ones by a larger accumulation of errors.'

These are all the ancient editions of Shak

speare.

MODERN EDITIONS.

Octavo, Rowe's, London, 1709, 7 vols.
Duodecimo, Rowe's, ditto, 1714, 9 ditto.
Quarto, Pope's, ditto, 1725, 6 ditto.
Duodecimo, Pope's, ditto, 1728, 10 ditto.
Octavo, Theobald's, ditto, 1733, 7 ditto.
Duodecimo, Theobald's, ditto, 1740, 8 ditto.
Quarto, Hanmer's, Oxford, 1744, 6 ditto.
Octavo, Warburton's, London, 1747, 8 ditto.
Ditto, Johnson's, ditto, 1765, 8 ditto.
Ditto, Steevens's, ditto, 1766, 4 ditto.
Crown 8vo. Capell's, 1768, 10 ditto.
Quarto, Hanmer's, Oxford, 1771, 6 ditto.
Octavo, Johnson and Steevens, London, 1773,
10 ditto.

Ditto (published by Stockdale), 1784, 1 ditto.
Ditto, Johnson and Steevens, 1785, third edition,
revised and augmented by the editor of
Dodsley's Collection of old Plays (i. e. Mr.
Reed), 10 ditto.

Duodecimo (published by Bell), London, 1788,

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No. 4.

PLAYS ASCRIBED TO SHAKSPEARE.

EITHER BY THE EDITORS OF THE TWO LATER FOLIOS, OR BY THE COMPILERS OF
ANCIENT CATALOGUES.

Locrine.

Sir John Oldcastle.

Lord Cromwell.

The London Prodigal.

The Puritan.

The Yorkshire Tragedy.

from the papers of Henslowet that Sir John Oldcastle was the work of four writers-Munday, Drayton, Wilson, and Hathway. It is impossible to discover to whom the rest are to be attributed. Some other plays, with about equal pretensions, have likewise been given to our author.

The Arraignment of Paris, which is known to have been written by George Peele.

These were all printed as Shakspeare's in the dard folio, 1664, without having the slightest dam to such a distinction. Steevens thought The Birth of Merlin, the work of Rowley, althat the Yorkshire Tragedy might probably be a though in the title-page, 1662, probably by a hasty sketch of our great poet; but he after-fraud of the bookseller, it is stated to be the joint wards silently abandoned this opinion. We find production of Rowley and Shakspeare.

This edition is more scarce than even that of 1423: most of the copies having been destroyed in The fire of London, 1666.

+ He appears to have been proprietor of the Rose Theatre, near the bank side in Southwark. The MSS alluded to were found at Dulwich College.

Edward the Third.

This play Capell ascribed | Kinsmen. If he was the person who united with
Jonson in the composition of Sejanus, which Mr.
Gifford very reasonably doubts, no portion of his
work is now remaining. The piece, as originally
written, was not successful; and the passages
supplied by the nameless friend of Jonson were
omitted in publication. The fact of his having
co-operated with Fletcher in the Two Noble Kins-
men has been much discussed; Pope favours the
supposition that Shakspeare's hand may be dis-
covered in the tragedy: Dr. Warburton ex-
presses a belief that our great poet wrote 'the
first act, but in his worst manner.' All the rest
of the commentators, without exception, agree
in rejecting this opinion; and attribute the origin
of the tale to the puff of a bookseller, who found
his profit in uniting the name of Shakspeare with
that of Fletcher on publishing the play. The
judgment of the majority appears in this case to
be the most correct.

to Shakspeare, for no other reason but that he
thought it too good to be the work of any of his
contemporaries.
Fair Emma. There is no other ground for
supposing this play to be among our author's
productions, than its having been met with in a
volume, which formerly belonged to Charles II.
which is lettered on the back, SHAKSPEARE,
Vol. I.

The Merry Devil of Edmonton, entered on the Stationers' books as Shakspeare's about the time of the Restoration; but there is a former entry, in 1608, in which it is said to be written by T. B. whom Malone supposes to have been Tony or Antony Brewer.

Ma

Mucedorus. The real author unknown. lone conceives that he might be R. Greene. Shakspeare is supposed to have had a share in two other plays, and to have assisted Ben Jonson in Sejanus, and Fletcher in the Two Noble

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