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WILLIAM GEORGE CLARK, M.A.
FELLOW AND TUTOR OF TRINITY COLLEGE, AND PUBLIC ORATOR IN THE
The four plays printed in this volume appeared for the first time in the Folio of 1623, and in the same order in which they are here given.
Of The Taming of the Shrew alone is there any Quarto edition. The title-page of this, as it appears in Capell's copy, is as follows:
A wittie | and pleasant | Comedie Called | The Taming of the Shrew. | As it was acted by his Maiesties | Seruants at the Blacke Friers and the Globe. Written by Will. Shakespeare. | LONDON, | Printed by W. S. for John Smethwicke, and are to be | sold at his Shop in Saint Dunstones Church- | yard vnder the Diall: | 1631. |
From a minute comparison of this Quarto edition with the First Folio, extending to points which are necessarily left unrecorded in our notes, we have come to the conclusion that the Quarto was printed from the Folio. It is necessary to mention this, because Mr Collier, in the second edition of his Shakespeare, maintains that the Quarto was printed long before 1623, perhaps as early as 1607 or 1609; that its publication “had been in some way stayed' by the intervention of the author, on behalf of himself and the company to which he belonged; and that, having in consequence been laid aside for a number of years, some copies of it, remaining in the hands of Smithwicke the stationer, were issued in 1631, as if it had been then first published.” Mr Collier also conjectures that the title-page was 'struck off long subscquent to the printing of the body of the