Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 2, No. 293. Friday, 8 Nov 1991.
Date: 8 Nov 1991 20:20:00
Subject: Help Identifying PD Text of *Hamlet*
Michael Hart has forwarded me a copy of the first page of a text
recently submitted to Project Gutenberg. Before he can release it as
a public domain text, he must ascertain precisely which edition it has
been drawn from. If we can identify the edition for him, we should be
able to share the benefits of a PD *Hamlet* text.
As you will see, the excerpt is rather brief, but the most distinctive
features of it are the initial stage direction and perhaps the reading
"ho! Who". I've compared the text with the editions I have at home,
and can report that it is *not*:
-the first quarto
-the second quarto
-the first folio
-David Bevington's Bantam Hamlet
-George Hibbard's Oxford Hamlet
-Harold Jenkins' Arden Hamlet
-John Dover Wilson's Cambridge Hamlet
-Wells & Taylor's Oxford Hamlet
-Blakemore Evan's Riverside Hamlet
What it comes *closest to*, in my own collection (which is limited to
what I've listed here), is an 1823 edition published in London for
J.H.Bohte (no editor given). This would lead me to suspect a
nineteenth-century edition, but no doubt there are others on SHAKSPER
with better collections and knowledge about these than I.
I invite responses to SHAKSPER, as I'm curious now too. And I hope we
can solve this one...
University of Toronto
---------------The Mystery Hamlet------------------
Act: ACT I.
Scen: SCENE I.
Text: [Elsinore. A platform before the castle.]
[FRANCISCO at his post. Enter to him BERNARDO.]
Who's there? 1/1/1
Nay, answer me: stand, and unfold yourself. 1/1/2
Long live the King! 1/1/3
You come most carefully upon your hour. 1/1/6
'Tis now struck twelve; get thee to bed, Francisco. 1/1/7
For this relief much thanks: 'tis bitter cold, 1/1/8
And I am sick at heart. 1/1/9
Have you had quiet guard? 1/1/10
Not a mouse stirring.
Well, good night. 1/1/11
If you do meet Horatio and Marcellus, 1/1/12
The rivals of my watch, bid them make haste. 1/1/13
I think I hear them.- Stand, ho! Who is there? 1/1/14
[Enter HORATIO and MARCELLUS.]
Friends to this ground. 1/1/15
And liegemen to the Dane.
Give you good night. 1/1/16
O, farewell, honest soldier:
Who hath relieved you? 1/1/17
Bernardo has my place.
Give you good night. [Exit.] 1/1/18