Twenty-nine Volumes from the Letterpress Shakespeare[Folio Society]. LIMITED. The Letterpress Shakespeare. London: The Folio Society, 2007-2013. Twenty-nine volumes of a thirty-nine volume set. Each book limited and hand numbered. Half-bound in color-coded goatskin leather [Tragedies in red, Comedies in green, and Histories in blue] with hand-marbled paper sides; top edges gilt, and ribbon markers. Each play is housed in its own buckram solander box and comes with a smaller buckram-bound companion volume of the Oxford University Press edition with footnotes and commentaries. The boxes exhibit signs of wear to varying degrees, including scuffing, scratching, staining, and soiling; with the greatest extent of the damage to the History boxes. The books themselves were well protected and are in near fine condition.
Anthony and Cleopatra (2008) #127 of 3,750. 126 pages: 388 pages edited by Michael Neill.
Coriolanus (2008) #127 of 3,750. 127 pages: 388 pages edited by R.B. Parker, which has a scuffed spine.
Hamlet (2007) #163 of 3,750. 129 pages: 406 pages edited by G.R. Hibbard.
Julius Caesar (2008) #127 of 3,750. 98 pages: 253 pages edited by Arthur Humphreys.
King Lear (2007) #250 of 3,750. 115 pages: 321 pages edited by Stanley Wells.
Macbeth (2007) #277 of 3,750. 92 pages: 249 pages edited by Nicholas Brooke.
Othello (2007) #163 of 3,750. 125 pages: 491 pages edited by Michael Neill.
Romeo and Juliet (2010) #127 of 1,000. 113 pages: 450 pages edited by Jill L. Levenson.
Timon of Athens (2012) #127 of 1,000. 87 pages: 370 pages edited by John Jowett.
Titus Andronicus (2008) #127 of 3,750. 97 pages: 226 pages edited by Eugene M. Waith.
Troilus and Cressida (2011) #127 of 1,000. 120 pages: 205 pages edited by Kenneth Muir.
A Midsummer Night's Dream (2008) #192 of 3,750. 82 pages: 275 pages edited by Peter Holland.
All's Well That Ends Well (2011) #127 of 1,000. 103 pages: 245 pages edited by Susan Snyder.
As You Like It (2008) #322 of 3,750. 94 pages: 245 pages edited by Alan Brissenden.
Measure for Measure (2011) #127 of 1,000. 100 pages: 255 pages edited by N.W. Bawcutt.
Much ado about Nothing (2010) #127 of 1,000. 93 pages: 214 pages edited by Sheldon P. Zitner.
The Comedy of Errors (2013) #127 of 1,000. 75 pages: 232 pages edited by Charles Whitworth.
The Merchant of Venice (2010) #127 of 1,000. 97 pages: 241 pages edited by Jay L. Halio.
The Taming of the Shrew (2010) #127 of 1,000. 101 pages: 248 pages edited by H.J. Oliver.
The Tempest (2008) #187 of 3,750. 80 pages: 248 pages edited by Stephen Orgel.
The Winter's Tale (2011) #127 of 1,000. 110 pages: 295 pages edited by Stephen Orgel.
Twelfth Night (2008) #331 of 3,750. 87 pages: 247 pages edited by Roger Warren and Stanley Wells.
Henry IV, part one (2009) #127 of 1,000. 101 pages: 315 pages edited by David Bevington.
Henry IV, part two (2009) #127 of 1,000. 111 pages: 287 pages edited by René Weis.
Henry V (2009) #127 of 1,000. 109 pages: 330 pages edited by Gary Taylor.
King Henry VIII (2012) #127 of 1,000. 115 pages: 230 pages edited by Jay L. Halio.
King John (2012) #127 of 1,000. 100 pages: 303 pages edited by A.R. Braunmuller.
Richard II (2012) #127 of 1,000. 106 pages: 297 pages edited by Anthony B. Dawson and Paul Yachnin.
Richard III (2009) #127 of 1,000. 133 pages: 414 pages edited by John Jowett.
Please visit HA.com/6117 for an extended description of this lot.
In 2006 the Folio Society undertook the task of producing a letterpress edition of each of Shakespeare's plays in the "purest" form possible. The project, spanning eight years, was completed in 2014, coinciding with the celebration of Shakespeare's 450th birthday.
The result was thirty-nine beautifully hand bound volumes, each set in hot metal type, and printed on large mould-made paper with wide margins. With academic notes and commentaries relegated to a separate smaller format Oxford University Press volume, each play's text is presented "clutter" free. All that remains on the pages are Shakespeare's immortal words, on their own, reminding us that despite centuries of insightful academic work, "The play's the thing."
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