The Plays of William Shakespeare,; In Eight Volumes, with the Corrections and Illustrations of Various Commentators; To which are added Notes by Sam. Johnson. William Shakespeare, Samuel Johnson.

The Plays of William Shakespeare,; In Eight Volumes, with the Corrections and Illustrations of Various Commentators; To which are added Notes by Sam. Johnson.

London: J. and R. Tonson, et al. 1765. Second Edition. 8 vols., 8vos; frontispiece portrait in Vol. 1; clv, 488; [2] 557; [2] 504; [2] 589; [2] 493; [2] 627; [2] 547; [2] 473, [53]; half-titles in Vols. 2-8 (not called for in Vol. 1); contemporary polished calf with gilt rules, dentelles, marbled endpapers; spines finely tooled in gilt with red and green labels. Hinges tender but sound; edges rubbed; page edges dusted; headband of last volume mostly detached; a nice set. Item #205864

Twnety years in the making, Johnson's Shakespeare was eagerly anticipated. The first printing of 1000 copies was mostly sold to subscribers in advance. This anacknowledged second edition appeared in the same month as the first, believed to be 750 copies. It is easily distinguished by the addition of the name "T. Longman" to the list of publishers in the first two volumes and the pagination in Johnson's preface - it was not paginated in the first edition. A key work in Johnson's life and "one of the landmarks in the history of literary criticism" (Bate 390).

Price: $5,000.00

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