The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 30.101  Sunday, 10 March 2019


From:        Al Magary <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>

Date:         March 8, 2019 at 3:13:30 PM EST

Subject:    Shakespeare Census


Dear all,


We are very pleased to announce the launch of the new Shakespeare Census <>. The Shakespeare Census is a database that attempts to locate and describe all extant copies of all editions of Shakespeare’s works through 1700 (excluding the four folio editions). 


The Shakespeare Census enables new work in book history, bibliography, and the reception of Shakespeare’s works, revealing copy-specific information that has been “hiding in plain sight”. It promotes scholarly discussion and collaborative research by assigning each copy a unique identifier (the SC number). Over time, details will continue be added about each copy, including its condition, binding, marginalia, and provenance, along with a bibliography of scholarship discussing that specific copy. Currently the Shakespeare Census includes 1752 copies, and there are certainly more to be located. Many copies are not in Henrietta Bartlett’s Census or ESTC.


We invite you to explore the site and to contribute to it by alerting us to copies not yet listed, by contributing copy-specific information, and by identifying scholarship to be added to the copy-specific bibliography.


We are especially interested in hearing from librarians, collectors, and dealers who know of copies that should be in the database but aren’t. If you curate a collection that includes copies covered by the Census, we will set up a Librarian account for you so you can submit your copies and edit their details directly into the database. If you are a collector or dealer and know of privately held copies, please get in touch as well. We are eager to include these and are happy to anonymize as needed.


We hope the Shakespeare Census will be an exciting new resource for your work!



Zachary Lesser, University of Pennsylvania

Adam G. Hooks, University of Iowa




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