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Home :: Archive :: 1999 :: December ::
Re: First Folios (again)
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 10.2111  Thursday, 2 December 1999.

[1]     From:   A. D. Murphy <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 1 Dec 1999 14:32:47 +0000
        Subj:   Re: SHK 10.2106 First Folios (again)

[2]     From:   Louis Marder <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 1 Dec 1999 17:43:09 -0600
        Subj:   Re: SHK 10.2106 First Folios (again)


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           A. D. Murphy <
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Date:           Wednesday, 1 Dec 1999 14:32:47 +0000
Subject: 10.2106 First Folios (again)
Comment:        Re: SHK 10.2106 First Folios (again)

It may be that this has already come up on the original discussion of
this topic, but anyone who wants to use the Yale facsimile would be very
well advised to read Fredson Bowers' review of it in Modern Philology,
53 (1955), pp. 50-57. Bowers describes the Yale as 'the second faultiest
ever offered for sale'. The problems lie primarily in the process used
to produce the facsimile (cheap line offset) -- very serious changes
were inadvertently made to the text when the plates were 'cleaned' to
remove, eg, showthrough.

Bowers' conclusion is: 'Anyone wishing to use a facsimile in work where
accuracy is a desideratum must still rely on the Lee facsimile of 1902
or, curiously, on the amazingly accurate type facsimile of Lionel Booth
published in 1862-64'-his comments predate, of course, the Hinman
facsimile.

Cheers,
Andrew

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Louis Marder <
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Date:           Wednesday, 1 Dec 1999 17:43:09 -0600
Subject: 10.2106 First Folios (again)
Comment:        Re: SHK 10.2106 First Folios (again)

Dear Jimmy Jung and other Shakespeareans: December 1, 1999:

You can use the Yale facsimile as a working copy, but for final
publication of what you might publish, check the Sidney Lee facsimile
1902.  The Yale editors rushed their original 1623 Folio edition through
the photo offset press because, so I was told by Fredson Bowers, they
knew that the Charlton Hinman Folio was near publication.  Hinman's is
not ANY single F1 because he  used pages of other folios to replace
pages which were not good enough.  It is not The Folio it is A Folio.
See Hinman's work on The Printing and Proof-Reading of the First Folio
of Shakespeare, 1963.  (Use it and Lee while you are using the Yale
edition.)

When the Yale Folio facsimile was going through the press, it was
discovered that there was show-through on some of the pages causing
difficulties in reading.  The publishers employed a man to take the
negatives and clean them up by painting out the parts that were showing
through between the lines.  He was not very careful because in so doing,
he painted out ascenders of some letters and descenders of others. So,
for example,  an h without its ascender would look like an n; a y
without its descender would like a v, etc.  As Bowers told me, it was
the only folio facsimile that was printed with typographical errors!  So
far as I know, the only good reproduction  is the facsimile produced by
Sir Sidney Lee in 1902.  It was done by the collotype method, which is
actually like a printed  photograph of the pages from margin to margin
showing holes, blemishes, etc. See my and other reviews in The
Shakespeare Newsletters of 1973 on the 350th anniversary of the 1623
edition.  I compiled a bibliography of Folio facsimiles which appeared
in SNL in the same anniversary year.  [From the ventricals of my memory
I seem to recall that Lee also did some finagling.  Can anyone supply a
reference for this?]

RSVP to Louis Marder,  The Shakesspeare Data Bank, 
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