The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 20.0490 Friday, 18 September 2009
Date: Friday, 18 Sep 2009 12:05:14 -0700
Subject: Holinshed's Chronicles
Forwarded from H-Net List for British and Irish History
I am pleased to announce a new freely available resource for all those
interested in historical writing (and much else besides) in the early
modern period: Holinshed's Chronicles of England, Scotland and Wales.
An Oxford based team comprising myself (History, Oxford), Dr Felicity
Heal (History, Oxford), Dr Paulina Kewes (English, Oxford), and Dr Henry
Summerson (The Oxford Holinshed Project Research Assistant) has been
working on a parallel text electronic edition of Holinshed's Chronicles.
The Chronicles are best known as the source text for many of
Shakespeare's plays, but they were a gold mine for other dramatists and
poets, and for lawyers, politicians, and general readers. We've been
aware for a long time of the existence of differences between the two
editions of 1577 and 1587, but systematic analysis has proved elusive
because of the sheer volume of the texts. What we offer is a means of
reading the two editions alongside each other, a privilege hitherto only
available to those in particularly well endowed libraries. Users with
access to EEBO will be able to move from our edition to the EBO hosted
facsimiles of the pages.
The edition would have been impossible without the co-operation of
EEBO-TCP who undertook the keying of the 1577 edition (in addition to
the 1587 edition already on their site), as well as granting us
permission to make use of the two texts in our version.
We have also benefited from the assistance of the Research Services Team
at Oxford University Computing Services who developed the TEI Comparator
Tool, enabling comparison between the two texts. We think that this tool
may be of use to other projects. See the link to James Cummings' blog below.
The resource is freely available, and has been funded by Oxford
University's Fell Fund.
To access the texts go to:
But you can get there from the project website:
I send you there simply to alert you to the amount of additional
content, including a comprehensive analysis of the sources behind the
Chronicles undertaken by Henry Summerson.
There is also a comprehensive Holinshed bibliography, and a number of
To read James Cummings' blog and to find out more about the TEI
Comparator Tool, go to:
The parallel text edition is one of several outputs envisaged by the
Oxford Holinshed Project. We have commissioned forty essays which will
be published by OUP as The Oxford Handbook to Holinshed's Chronicles in
2011. We also hope to receive funding to enhance the electronic edition
with scholarly annotation.
All best wishes,
Ian W. Archer
Keble College, Oxford, OX1 3PG
Acting Warden, Keble College
Fellow and Tutor in Modern History
General Editor, Royal Historical Society Bibliography on British History
Literary Director, Royal Historical Society
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