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Home :: Archive :: 2003 :: June ::
Re: Line Numbers, On-Line Sources
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 14.1162  Wednesday, 11 June 2003

From:           Thomas M Lahey <
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Date:           Thursday, 10 Apr 2003 20:53:08 -0700
Subject:        Line Numbers, On-Line Sources

Hi,

Thanks to all (well, almost all) who gave URLs to texts.  So far, the
winner for my purposes is the Michael Best site (THANKS) identified in
Amy Ulen's (THANKS THANKS) email.

I'm developing a computer program to aid in teaching drama in general,
starting at Macbeth in particular.  I was dismayed/surprised that ALL
line-numbered texts aren't identical.  The first text I used (Folger,
Aug 1992) has 13 lines for Act I, Scene 1.  A friend noted that another
version only counted 12.  I studied the difference & came to the
conclusion that 12 was the right number.  I'm now using Dell Invitation
to Shakespeare (Apr 1966) as my source.

The difference occurs in "Upon the heath."  Is it a line on its own?  Or
should it be counted as completing the meter of "Where the place?"  I
opted for the latter.

I think that teaching from a book that doesn't emphasize the meter by
indenting (Folger does indent) & then counting such lines is a mistake.
It isn't just completing meter, it's how the thought hangs together
(e.g. Dell I.7.59 in a "correctly" numbered edition! (oh, all right:
Have done to this./If we should fail?/We fail?)).

Am I missing something?

So, are texts that don't line number "correctly" identified & frowned on
in teaching circles?  Should we begin a campaign?

Stay healthy,
Tom

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