This copy of a selection of Shakespeare’s plays was required by my Early Shakespeare professor. It is based on the New Cambridge Shakespeare Edition, and is not complete. It includes significant portion, though: The Comedy of Errors, Titus Andronicus, Richard III, Romeo and Juliet, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Richard II, The Merchant of Venice, Henry IV.I, Much Ado About Nothing, Henry IV.II, As You Like It, Henry V, Julius Caesar, Hamlet, Twelfth Night, Othello, Troilus and Cressida, Measure for Measure, King Lear, Macbeth, Coriolanus, Antony and Cleopatra, The Winter’s Tale, and the Tempest.
It is an acceptable version, for sure. The type is larger than my Dad’s copy and is easily read, there are lots of pictures of performances of the plays and quotes from actors and other people on certain parts of the plays, and the copy includes side bars, asides, and context ‘essays’ for lack of a better term, along with the footnotes. The footnotes are not as complete as my Dad’s copy, the are not noted in the text it self, and there are certain details, such as scene breaks and lines, that are different between the two.
Specifically, with regard to the footnotes, Shakespeare frequently makes references to ‘rubs,’ which is a reference to the game of bowls that Elizabethans would have been familiar with. My Dad’s copy points the reader to an appendices that discusses bowls so that the reader has a deeper understanding of what Shakespeare was trying to evoke by using the term. This copy does not note references to ‘rub’ in such a way. It is a small instance, but it’s there, none the less.
All in all, I think it is a good copy for studying. There is a lot more room for note taking, so I give it 9/10. Not my favorite, but it has different strengths. So, having both is very helpful.
Is there a book you have were you prefer one copy over another? Are you nit-picky about footnotes and how they present in a book? Share your thoughts! Until next time, keep reading and stay kind!