Make a Donation

Consider making a donation to support SHAKSPER.

Subscribe to Our Feeds

Current Postings RSS

Announcements RSS

Home :: Archive :: 2001 :: June ::
Re: Cuthbert Burby
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 12.1580  Thursday, 22 June 2001

[1]     From:   William Proctor Williams <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
        Date:   Wednesday, 20 Jun 2001 12:31:22 -0400
        Subj:   Re: SHK 12.1570 Cuthbert Burby

[2]     From:   Joe Conlon <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
        Date:   Wednesday, 20 Jun 2001 13:16:44 -0500
        Subj:   Re: SHK 12.1570 Cuthbert Burby Query

[3]     From:   Leslie Thomson <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
        Date:   Wednesday, 20 Jun 2001 16:22:03 -0400
        Subj:   Re: SHK 12.1570 Cuthbert Burby Query

[4]     From:   David Kathman <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
        Date:   Wednesday, 20 Jun 2001 20:52:40 -0600
        Subj:   Re: SHK 12.1570 Cuthbert Burby Query


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           William Proctor Williams <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:           Wednesday, 20 Jun 2001 12:31:22 -0400
Subject: 12.1570 Cuthbert Burby Query
Comment:        Re: SHK 12.1570 Cuthbert Burby Query

Since Burby was a bookseller, though apprenticed as a printer, and since
all the 1592 items in STC are books printed for rather than by, the
answer would seem to be that the question of setting type doesn't
arise.  See STC (2nd ed., vol. 3); McKenzie, Stationers' Apprentices
1605-1640; and Plomer, Dictionary of Printers and Booksellers,
1557-1640.

William Proctor Williams

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Joe Conlon <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:           Wednesday, 20 Jun 2001 13:16:44 -0500
Subject: 12.1570 Cuthbert Burby Query
Comment:        Re: SHK 12.1570 Cuthbert Burby Query

Is Cuthbert Burby the same person as Cuthbert Burbage, James's son and
Richard's brother, and a member of the Chamberlain's Men?

Joe Conlon
Warsaw, IN, USA

[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Leslie Thomson <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:           Wednesday, 20 Jun 2001 16:22:03 -0400
Subject: 12.1570 Cuthbert Burby Query
Comment:        Re: SHK 12.1570 Cuthbert Burby Query

This is Peter Blayney's response to Will Sharpe's question:

"Cuthbert Burby was a bookseller and publisher, but never a printer. He
never owned any type to set, and only "employed compositors" in the
sense that he paid printers to print books for him."

[4]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           David Kathman <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:           Wednesday, 20 Jun 2001 20:52:40 -0600
Subject: 12.1570 Cuthbert Burby Query
Comment:        Re: SHK 12.1570 Cuthbert Burby Query

Will Sharpe wrote:

>Can anybody point me to a good source of information about the
>professional details of Cuthbert Burby in and around 1592, specifically
>containing answers to the question - did he set type himself or employ
>compositors (if so, who and how many) etc.?
>
>I am currently trawling through the Shakespeare Institute archives
>looking for any details I can find, but any suggestions to minimise
>trawling time would be greatly appreciated.

The obvious places to start are the STC (especially the index of
stationers in the third volume); McKerrow's *Dictionary of Printers and
Booksellers, 1557-1640* (old, but still useful for the basics); Arber's
transcript of the Stationer's Register (preferably via the index); Greg
and Boswell's *Records of the Court of the Stationers' Company
1576-1602*; Jackson's *Records of the Court of the Stationers' Company
1602-1640*; D. F. McKenzie's *Stationer's Company Apprentices
1605-1640*; and Plomer's *Abstracts from the Wills of English Printers
and Stationers from 1492 to 1630*, which included Burby's will.

Based on what I have right at hand, here are a few facts you might find
useful:

Cuthbert Burby (1565-1607) was baptized on 3 March 1565 in Arlesley,
Bedfordshire, the son of Edmund Burby, husbandman.  (Ironically, he was
just 3 months and 12 days older than King's Men sharer Cuthbert Burbage,
with whom he was sometimes confused by 19th-century researchers.) He was
apprenticed to stationer William Wright in 1583 at the age of 18, and
was made free of the stationers' company on 13 January 1592, the year
you're interested in.  Right off the bat he was involved in somewhat
shady dealings:  the first book he entered on the Stationers' Register,
on 1 May 1592, was something purporting to be a translation of "the
Axiochus of Plato" by "Edw.  Spenser", but modern scholars generally
agree that the translation is not by Spenser; Anthony Munday is a more
likely candidate.  Later in 1592, Burby's former master William Wright
published the infamous *Greene's Groatsworth of Wit* (entered "vppon the
perill of Henrye Chettle") and Chettle's own *Kind-Heart's Dream* (with
Chettle's famous apology to Shakespeare).  Later in the 1590s, Burby was
involved in publishing the Bodenham miscellanies, in which Munday and
Chettle were involved on the editorial side; he published the most
famous of these, Francis Meres' *Palladis Tamia*.  He also published Q1
*Loves Labours Lost* (1598) and Q2 *Romeo and Juliet* (1599).

Burby's business address in 1592 was given as "the Poultry, by St.
Mildred's Church" (where Wright had his shop, right smack in the middle
of London), but on 10 February 1593 he got married in St. Thomas the
Apostle Church (a little bit southwest of St. Mildred Poultry), and by
the late 1590s he had a shop near the Royal Exchange.  He began taking
apprentices soon after receiving his freedom, and presumably they would
have helped with setting type; however, something kept going wrong with
his apprentices, and it's hard to believe that this was coincidental.
Burby took his first apprentice on 3 April 1592 (John Ashton,
transferred from Humphrey Lownes), but the indenture was cancelled and
Ashton was forbidden from becoming free of the company.  On 26 March
1593, Burby took Thomas Wilkins as an apprentice, but the same thing
happened:  the indenture was cancelled.  On 24 January 1594, Burby took
on Thomas Scrogge, and 11 days later on 4 February he took on Thomas
Shotbolt, but both apprentices were dismissed from Burby's service.
Finally, on 3 March 1595, one worked out:  Henry Rocket was bound to
Burby on that date, and he served out the term of his apprenticeship and
became free in 1602.

Burby died in 1607, leaving his two shops (one at the Swan in Paul's
churchyard, the other in Cornhill near the Royal Exchange) to his
apprentice Nicholas Bourne.  His widow Elizabeth ran the business for a
couple of years before Bourne was ready to take it over.

If you're concerned with compositors, be sure you distinguish books that
Burby *published* from those he *printed*.  None of Burby's most famous
publications were printed by him:  *Plato's Axiochus* was printed by
John Danter and John Charlewood; *Palladis Tamia* was printed by
Nicholas Ling; Q1 *Loves Labours Lost* was printed by William White
(Burby's former master); and Q2 *Romeo and Juliet* was printed by Thomas
Creede.  In fact, I'm not sure that Burby had a printing press at all,
in which the question of compositors would be moot for him; however, I
don't have the full STC handy to check.

Dave Kathman

 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 

_______________________________________________________________
S H A K S P E R: The Global Shakespeare Discussion List
Hardy M. Cook, 
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 
The S H A K S P E R Webpage <http://ws.bowiestate.edu>
 

©2011 Hardy Cook. All rights reserved.