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Home :: Archive :: 2008 :: May ::
Thomas Kyd and 1 Henry 6
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 19.0261  Monday, 5 May 2008

[1] 	From:	Diana Price <
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	Date:	Friday, 2 May 2008 13:54:18 -0700 (PDT)
	Subj:	Re: SHK 19.0255 Thomas Kyd and 1 Henry 6

[2] 	From:	Bob Grumman <
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	Date:	Friday, 02 May 2008 18:07:39 -0500
	Subj:	Re: SHK 19.0255 Thomas Kyd and 1 Henry 6


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:		Diana Price <
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Date:		Friday, 2 May 2008 13:54:18 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: 19.0255 Thomas Kyd and 1 Henry 6
Comment:	Re: SHK 19.0255 Thomas Kyd and 1 Henry 6

John Briggs questions the viability of my theory that a "ne" performance 
is one at which Henslowe charged double admissions. In 1585, a German 
merchant, Samuel Kiechel, reported that in London theatres, "when they 
act anything new . . . double prices are charged." Following is an 
overview of how I approached the question (adapted from 'Henslowe's "ne" 
and "the tyeringe-howsse doore"'_ (RORD2003).

Henslowe's sums are independent of admissions for groundlings admitted 
at the main gates. The largest receipts generated by a non-"ne" 
performance are only a few shillings less than the largest "ne" 
receipts, so not all admission fees could have been doubled. My analysis 
of data includes calculating the likely attendance and configuration of 
that attendance to account for the differential.

The double price evidently was charged only at the main entrances to the 
theater. Gallery admissions were the same for "ne' and non-"ne" 
performances. Henslowe did not benefit from the second penny charged at 
the main entrances at "ne" performances.

Based on estimates made by Richard Hosley and others, I assume a maximum 
of sixteen customers entering at the tiring-house door to sit in the 
lord's room. While we do not know how much Henslowe charged for his 
lords' room, all the evidence points to 6d for regular performances.

If Henslowe charged sixteen customers double the usual rate (i.e., 12d) 
at the tiring-house door at "ne" performances, he could gross up to 192d 
or 16s. His 50% share would be 96d or 8s, so at maximum capacity, "ne" 
sums would exceed non-"ne" sums by approximately 4s. In other words, if 
this theory is viable, (and assuming that capacity crowds were close in 
number but not necessarily identical), then the difference between 
admissions collected at the tiring-house door for a sold-out "ne" and 
non-"ne" performance should be approximately 4s. As the takings 
decrease, so does the possibility of making any meaningful inferences 
about the differentials. The article sets forth several possible "box 
office reports" to examine these differentials.

I can send the complete article to anyone wishing to question this 
theory further.

Diana Price

[2]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:		Bob Grumman <
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Date:		Friday, 02 May 2008 18:07:39 -0500
Subject: 19.0255 Thomas Kyd and 1 Henry 6
Comment:	Re: SHK 19.0255 Thomas Kyd and 1 Henry 6

 >John Briggs said:

 >"Yes, 'Henslowe's 'ne' does not necessarily mean
 >'new' - but it almost certainly does, and to pretend
 >otherwise is probably irresponsible, as it leads to
?people like Bob Grumman thinking that they have
 >'read that it merely meant (or could have merely
 >meant) new for Henslowe's theatre.'"

Well, I'm sure I have read that it could have meant "new for Henslowe," 
which I found quite plausible. I don't quite see how that makes me not 
taking "ne" to mean "new." What I can't take it certainly to mean is 
"world premiere." I'm not sure footnoting all this would be proper if 
one is prominently assuming it does mean that to advance some larger 
argument. (With which, ironically, I probably mostly agree.)

--Bob G.


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