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Home :: Archive :: 2008 :: April ::
Thomas Kyd and 1 Henry 6
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 19.0247  Tuesday, 29 April 2008

[1] 	From:	Thomas Pendleton <
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	Date:	Monday, 28 Apr 2008 16:19:19 -0400
	Subj:	RE: SHK 19.0244 Thomas Kyd and 1 Henry 6

[2] 	From:	John Briggs <
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	Date:	Monday, 28 Apr 2008 22:58:12 +0100
	Subj:	Re: SHK 19.0244 Thomas Kyd and 1 Henry 6


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:		Thomas Pendleton <
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Date:		Monday, 28 Apr 2008 16:19:19 -0400
Subject: 19.0244 Thomas Kyd and 1 Henry 6
Comment:	RE: SHK 19.0244 Thomas Kyd and 1 Henry 6

Henslowe's Diary records a performance by the Earl of Sussex's Men of 
"titus & ondronicus" on January 23, 1594. The entry is marked "ne," 
which seems to mean a new play; it certainly seems to have been 
advertised as new, to judge from the impressive receipts. This isn't 
quite an ironclad guarantee that this is the premiere of Shakespeare's 
Titus, but it's about as strong as such evidence gets.

Henslowe's record of the "ne" "harey the vj" on March 3, 1591 (for 1592) 
is sometimes taken as the premiere of 1 Henry VI. But this, I think, is 
much more problematical. The performance of Henry VIII, during which the 
Globe burned down, may have been its premiere, although Sir Henry 
Wotton's letter calls it only "a new play."

Bob Grumman's implicit objection that we have few (if any) records of 
Shakespearean premieres is quite accurate. There are some court 
performances that are dated, but it is questionable whether the acting 
company would have played something unproven in public performance in 
such a venue.

Tom Pendleton

[2]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:		John Briggs <
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Date:		Monday, 28 Apr 2008 22:58:12 +0100
Subject: 19.0244 Thomas Kyd and 1 Henry 6
Comment:	Re: SHK 19.0244 Thomas Kyd and 1 Henry 6

Bob Grumman wrote:

 >John Briggs speaks of premieres of certain plays by Shakespeare such
 >as Titus Andronicus. I was not aware that we knew the date of any of
 >his plays' premieres. What evidentiary backing is there for any
 >specific date as the date of a Shakespearean premiere?

The "evidentiary backing" is that those dates for first performances of 
those plays are annotated "ne" (i.e. "new") in Philip Henlowe's "Diary." 
The "evidential backing" for that interpretation is that similar 
annotations for other plays do indeed seem to be definitely first 
performances of new plays - and not just revised plays.

John Briggs

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