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Home :: Archive :: 1994 :: August ::
Re: Generic Expectations (*Tro.*, Blayney, and More)
Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 5, No. 0690.  Monday, 22 August 1994.
 
(1)     From:   W. L. Godshalk <
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        Date:   Saturday, 20 Aug 1994 23:10:04 -0500 (EST)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 5.0689  Re: The Printing of Folio TROILUS
 
(2)     From:   Hardy M. Cook <
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        Date:   Monday, August  22, 1994
        Subj:   Printing of Folio *Tro.* and Blayney Catalog
 
(3)     From:   W. L. Godshalk <
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        Date:   Sunday, 21 Aug 1994 21:47:37 -0500 (EST)
        Subj:   Genre
 
(4)     From:   David Schalkwyk <
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        Date:   Monday, 22 Aug 94 09:44:29 SAST-2
        Subj:   Re: SHK 5.0689  Re: Generic Expectations (*Tro.*)
 
 
(1)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           W. L. Godshalk <
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Date:           Saturday, 20 Aug 1994 23:10:04 -0500 (EST)
Subject: 5.0689  Re: The Printing of Folio TROILUS
Comment:        Re: SHK 5.0689  Re: The Printing of Folio TROILUS
 
Peter Blayney's explanation should surprise no one. Greg and Hinman have used
it, as well as Kenneth Palmer in his Arden edition of TROILUS. The story of
Walley's resistance to Jaggard has been told so often that it has taken on the
status of truth. Walley, sometimes known as Walleys, was indeed one of the two
publishers (the other was Richard Bonion or Bonian) who commissioned Eld to
print the first quarto -- and Walley may possibly have had some rights in
TROILUS. Bonion/Bonian, as I recall without checking, was gone from the
publishing scene by 1623.
 
Nevertheless, as far as I know -- and Blayney may have access to records that I
don't know about, there is no substantial proof that Walley was responsible for
the delay in the Folio printing. The evidence that I have seen can hardly be
called "evidence."  That Walley dragged his feet may seem "reasonable," but
when analyzing human actions, "reason" may be the wrong criterion.
 
Further, in the time between the first aborted printing and the final printing,
Jaggard apparently got hold of a different text from which to continue
printing. The first aborted printing had been a reprint of Q1. The final
printing shows signs of Q1, but also signs of a manuscript -- and the changes
are sometimes extensive. Philip Williams counted approximately 5000 differences
between Q1 and F1 Troilus. I don't think we can be sure that the new copy-text
did NOT have something to do with the postponement of the printing.
 
My hypothesis is that Jaggard (or Heminge and Condell) had a new manuscript
copy-text prepared, a copy-text that used both Q1 and the newly acquired
manuscript. This hypothesis accounts for all the phenonema (I think). Why
Jaggard or Heminge and Condell had the new-copy text prepared is a matter for
further hypotheses. But printers did (during this period) have poorly
prepared manuscript copy recopied by a scribe before setting. Perhaps not
always, but it was a common enough practice.
 
Howard-Hill has suggested a similar hypothesis for KING LEAR in Library 4
(1982):1-24.
 
Is Blayney's catalog still available? I haven't seen it, but I surely would
like to.
 
Biographically yours,  Bill Godshalk
 
(2)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Hardy M. Cook <
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Date:           Monday, August 22, 1994
Re:             Printing of *Tro.* and Blayney Catalog
 
I simply do not have the background to enter into a defense of Peter Blayney's
contentions other than to say that problems with publishing rights seem as
plausible an explanation to me as Jaggard's or Heminge's or Condell's
inability to assign a genre to *Troilus and Cressida* as the reason for the
final placement of *Tro.* in F1.  Blayney mentions Greg but tags as "hardly
likely" that "the Roberts entry would have enabled Jaggard 'to snap his
fingers at Walley' and reprint *Troilus* without further ado."  Blayney also
discusses Hinman's evidence regarding the sheet with the surviving crossed-out
*Romeo* page and his contention that the inclusion of the prologue was "an
excuse for eliminating the crossed-out page of *Romeo*."  Finally, Blayney
addresses the consequent three issues of the First Folio.  To Blayney, these
incidents appear as a self-evident, seamless series of activities: there seems
to be no NEW evidence beyond Peter Blayney's considerable expertise.
 
As for the availability of the Blayney catalog, it is a Folger Library
Publication (ISBN 0-9629254-3-8), and I saw a few copies of the hardbound copy
in the Folger Bookstore/Gift Shop when I was at the Library a few weeks ago.
One could write -- 201 East Capital Street, S.E., Washington, D.C. 20003 -- or
FAX -- (202) 544-4623 -- for further information.
 
(3)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           W. L. Godshalk <
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Date:           Sunday, 21 Aug 1994 21:47:37 -0500 (EST)
Subject:        Genre
 
Following Dave Evett's musings, I would like to suggest a plan of attack.
First, let's use Greg's BIBLIOGRAPHY OF ENGLISH PRINTED DRAMA to see what
generic designations are actually used on 16th and early 17th century
titlepages. Second, let's use Yoshiko Kawachi's CALENDAR OF ENGLISH RENAISSANCE
DRAMA 1558-1642 to see what generic designations are used presently. The
results might be surprising.
 
In 1592, TITUS ANDRONICUS was listed as a "Romaine Tragedie." In the 1611
printing and thereafter, it was called the "Lamentable Tragedie." Kawachi
labels it "tragedy." In 1594, ORLANDO FURIOSO (the play) was called a
"Historie." Kawachi calls it "romantic comedy."
 
I won't go on.  But it seems to me that, if we want to be sure about
Renaissance genre labels on titlepages, someone will have to analyze a
significant number of them. Or has someone already done that work?
 
Dave suggests that my style is hyperbolic, and cites "supersensitive" as an
example. Strangely enough, I was under the impression that it was Dave's thesis
that the early moderns had been particularly sensitive to genre! (Note my
hyperbolic exclamation mark!)
 
Yours, Bill Godshalk
 
(4)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           David Schalkwyk <
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Date:           Monday, 22 Aug 94 09:44:29 SAST-2
Subject: 5.0689  Re: Generic Expectations (*Tro.*)
Comment:        Re: SHK 5.0689  Re: Generic Expectations (*Tro.*)
 
In response to David Evett's suggestion that modes of death may be an
indication of genre, I wonder if anyone has heard (or read) Stephen
Greenblatt's latest thoughts on death in Shakespeare.  He suggests that no-one
ever dies of "natural causes" in Shakespeare.
 
David Schalkwyk
University of Cape Town
 

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