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Home :: Archive :: 2003 :: December ::
Shakespeare's Library
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 14.2319  Wednesday, 10 December 2003

From:           W.L. Godshalk <
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Date:           Tuesday, 09 Dec 2003 21:30:36 -0500
Subject:        Shakespeare's Library

I assume that Shakespeare, like Dorothy Parker, was a constant reader,
yet there seems to be no evidence that he had a personal library and the
free public library was, in 1600, a thing of the future. So where did
Shakespeare get books to read?  Did Southampton invite the poet over to
use his library?  Did Shakespeare borrow books (at a price) from
booksellers, or spend his leisure time browsing in bookstores?  Did he
do a great deal of manuscript reading?  Did books and manuscript
circulate freely among the literati and writers?  Did some public houses
and/or inns have a selection of reading material for patrons?  Or, like
some 21st century writers, did Shakespeare hire a research assistant?

Bill Godshalk

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