William Shakespeare. Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies, Published According to the True Originall Copies. (First Folio) London: Isaac Jaggard and E. Blount, 1623.

Gift of the Dallas Shakespeare Club in honor of their 100th anniversary.

William Shakespeare died without publishing any of the plays that he wrote. Several years after his death, when many corrupted versions of the plays were being printed, two friends, John Heminge and Henry Condell, decided to collect, edit, and publish all thirty-six of Shakespeare’s plays that they believed to be authentic. For this important work they chose the "folio" format, which refers to a book size where the sheet of paper on which the text is printed is folded once to form two leaves or four pages. Because it is the first compilation of Shakespeare's plays and is printed in the folio format, this book is often referred to as the "First Folio." A number of Shakespeare’s important plays appear in print for the first time in this volume and, without it, would likely have been lost. Of the approximately 1,200 copies printed, only about 250 remain today.

 

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