Page images
PDF
EPUB

Verso Gg3, (354), gives the date of the first production of the play by the Chapel Children, With the allowance of the Master of REVELLS, and the names of the six principal comedians.

After the general title-page, the printer's name is found on the title-pages of the plays only. The title-pages of Every Man in his Humour reads: Printed by VVILLIAM STANSBY. The title-pages of Cynthia's Revels, Sejanus, Volpone, Epicoene, the Alchemist, and Catiline, are the same in this respect; but that of Every Man out of his Humour reads: Printed by W. Stansby for I. Smithwicke. Poetaster has been dealt with above.

III. THE | WORKES | OF | Benjamin Jonson | -neque, me vt miretur turba, | laboro: | Contentus paucis lectoribus. | LONDON, | Printed by | Richard Bishop, I and are to be sold by | Andrew Crooke, | in St. Paules, I Church-yard. Ano D. 1640.

Folio. Collation.—[A] to (L114] verso, p. 668, in sixes, including the plays; A, p. [1], to [16] verso, p. 228, in sixes, including the Epigrams, the Forest, Entertainments, a Panegyre, and Masques. The first half is blank. The title-page of the 1616 folio, by Hole, is duplicated here with changed imprint. All pieces in the volume, Poetaster excepted, were printed by Richard Bishop.

Pasted to the verso of the blank leaf [A], and thus opposite the title-page (which is A2 recto, verso blank), is an engraving of Jonson, seated, crowned with bays, the oval frame cutting out the right hand; he has a cloak over his left shoulder and holds gloves in his left hand. About the oval frame are the words : VERA EFFIGIES DOCTISSIMI POETARVM ANGLORVM BEN: IOHNSONII. On either side, above the center, the oval is decorated with a palm branch, and it is set in a rectangular frame, in each lower corner of which are two books, one lying flat, the

*This collation is made from the copy of the 1640 folio in the Boston Athenaeum Library.

other on edge upon the first. To the left, below the oval, is printed: Ro: Vaughan fecit. Beneath the whole appears:

Johnsoni typus, ecce! qui furoris,
Antistes sacer, Enthei, Camenis,
Vinder Ingenij recens Sepulti,
Antiqua reparator unus artis,

Defuncta Pater Eruditionis,
Et Scenæ veteris novator andar.
Nec falix minus, aut minus politus
Cui solus similis, Figura, vivet.

O could there be an art found out that might
Produce his shape soe lively as to Write.

Ab. Holl:

POËTASTER, OR | His Arraignement. | A Comicall Satyre. First Acted in the yeare 1601 By. the then | Children of Queene ELIZABETHS ! CHAPPELL. | VVith the allowance of the Master of Revels. / The Author B. J. I MART. | Et mihi de nullo fama rubore placet. | [Device]" | LONDON, | Printed by ROBERT YOUNG. / M. DC. XL. |

The above title-page is on [X5] recto, p. [237], verso being blank. [X6] recto, p. (239), bears the Dedication; on the verso, p. (240), are The Persons of the Play, as in folio 1616; THE SCENE. | ROME. | and The principall Comedians. The text of the play proper begins Y recto, p. 241, and ends Dd3 verso, p. 306, where begins the Apologetical Dialogue, which ends [Dd5] verso, p. 310.

In the first section, the following sets of signatures are wanting: J, U, W, Jj, Uu, Ww, Jjj. The last play, Catiline, ends [L114] verso.

In the second section, the title-page of the Epigrams is A recto, p. [1]; verso blank. Signatures for J are wanting. The section ends [T6] verso.

IV. THE | WORKS | OF | BEN JONSON, / Which were formerly Printed in Two Volumes, | are now Reprinted in One. To which is added | A COMEDY, I CALLED THE | NEVV INN. | With Additions never before

* The device of a satyr's head appears on the title-pages of all the plays in this folio except Poetaster, the title-page of which bears, within an oval marked MOLLIA CVM DVRIS, an acrobatic figure who seems to carry a bundle of books in his left hand, and to invoke Jove (?), who is looking down from the clouds, with his right; Jove's eagle (?) is ascending.

1

[ocr errors]

Published. -neque, me ut miretur turba laboro : | Con-
tentus paucis lectoribus.

(Here follow four wood-cuts, representing respectively the emblems
of England, Scotland, Wales, and Ireland.)

LONDON, | Printed by Thomas Hodgkin, for H. Herringman, E. Brewster, T. Baffett, R. Chiswell, M. Wotton, G. Conyers, M DC XCII,

Folio. Collation.-A, six leaves, the third alone bearing
signature. The first leaf, said by Lowndes to bear a laureled
portrait of Jonson by W. Elder, is wanting in the Yale
Library copy. B to [Bbbbb4] verso, in fours. Two leaves
without signature or pagination, bearing Leges Convivales,
RULES FOR THE Tavern Academy, &c., and Over the
DOOR at the Entrance into the APOLLO, are added. All
except the two extra leaves are printed in double column.

In the signatures, the following sets of letters are omitted :
J, U, W, Jj, Min, Nn, Vv, Ww, Ddd, Jjj, Uuu, Www, Jjjj,
Uuuu, Wwww. In place of R2, we have R repeated; Ccc,
two leaves; all Ddd is omitted, p. 382 being followed by
p. 393. Catiline ends [L14] verso, p. 264, and the next
page is 281, with signature Oo; but judging from the
Catalogue, no material is omitted here. Beginning Oo recto
we have the Epigrams, the Forest, Masques, and Entertain-
ments. The plays recommence Eee recto, P. 393, and extend
to [Zzz4] verso, p. 544. Then, beginning Aaaa recto, p.
545, we have the Underwoods, Love's Welcome, Mortimer
(a fragment), Masques, Horace's Art of Poetry, the English
Grammar, and Discoveries, ending [Yyyy4] recto, p. 719,
verso blank. On p. 721, with signature Aaaaa by error
for Zzzz, begins recto the New Inn, which extends to
[Bbbbb4] verso. Zzzz is replaced by Aaaaa, which is fol-
lowed by Zzzz2; then after [Zzzz4] follows another Aaaaa,
Aaaaa2, etc.

Poetaster begins [14] recto, p. 95, and ends R [2] recto,
p. 123, verso blank. The title-page reads: POETASTER:
| or, | His Arraignment. | A COMICAL SATYR. | First

A&ted in the Year 1601. By the then CHILDREN of QUEEN | ELIZABETH's CHAPPEL. With the Allowance of the Master of REVELS. | The Author B. J. | Et mihi de nullo fama rubore placet. Mart. TO THE VERTUOUS and my WORTHY FRIEND, Mr. Richard Martin. [Then follows the Dedication.

(N4) verso bears The PERSONS of the Play, as in folio 1616; The SCENE ROME, and The Principal Com@DIANS. O recto, p. 97, the text of the play begins; it ends R verso, P. 122, where we find TO THE READER and the beginning of the apologetical dialogue. This dialogue ends R[2] recto, p. 123.

V. The subsequent editions of Jonson are of less bibliographical importance. In 1716 appeared a booksellers’ reprint, in seven octavo volumes, of the 1692 text. The Brit. Mus. Cat. contains: ‘B. J.'s Plays. 2 vol. Dublin, 1729. 12°.' This edition I have not seen. In 1756 Peter Whalley published the Works in seven volumes, annotated. Jonson's Dramatic Works, from the text and with the notes of Whalley, were in 1811 reprinted in one volume, with the Dramatic Works of Beaumont and Fletcher, edited by George Colman. A nine-volume edition of the Works, with memoir and notes, by William Gifford, was published in 1816; new edition, 1846. Another edition of Gifford, 3 vols., was produced by F. Cunningham in 1871; this was reissued in 9 vols., in 1875. In 1838 appeared a one-volume edition of Jonson's Works, by Barry Cornwall. In the Mermaid Series, the first volume of plays selected from Jonson, edited by Dr. Brinsley Nicholson, with an introduction by C. H. Herford, appeared in 1893; vol. 2 followed in 1894, vol. 3 in 1895.

b. REMARKS UPON THE EDITIONS Poetaster was entered on the Stationers' Register December 21, 1601, and published in quarto in 1602. It was included in the first folio of Jonson's Works, 1616, and in all subsequent editions.

1602. Comparatively speaking, the quarto of 1602 is excellent in typography. It presents a text, however, differing in many respects from that of 1616, which contains changes and several important additions that must have been made by Jonson himself. It should be noted that in the quarto, as will be seen in our Variants, the act and scene headings are in Latin; that in act 5, sc. 3 Crispinus disgorges a number of words not reprinted in the first folio; and that Exit and Exeunt are frequent. The address To the Reader, supplying the place of Epilogue and Apology, is reprinted in our collation.

1616. Jonson's "Works" were first collected in the folio edition, of which the first volume, carefully revised by himself, appeared in 1616, the second in a succession of fragments from 1630-41.' Thus C. H. Herford, in his article on Jonson in DNB, presents the generally accepted view as to the authority of the 1616 folio. Recently, however, a different theory has been advanced by B. A. P. van Dam and C. Stoffel,—The Authority of the Ben Jonson Folio of 1616,' Anglia, Neue Folge, 14. 377 ff. Taking up Every Man out of his Humour as it appears in quarto 1600 and in folio 1616, the authors point out serious omissions and transpositions, besides minor changes, in the 1616 version. Their conclusion is that the 1616 folio was not 'carefully revised,' nor even supervised at all, by Jonson.

A detailed collation of the quarto edition of Poetaster with the version in folio 1616 leads me to believe that this play at least was not carelessly, ignorantly, or capriciously dealt with by the 1616 editor; that, on the contrary, it has many alterations and additions that no printer's hack would have attempted. Since Jonson was then alive and active, the only reasonable conclusion is that he himself supervised the printing of Poetaster in 1616. Concerning the other plays in the folio I am not prepared to make any statement, and I shall confine myself here to presenting the facts upon which my inference as to Poetaster is based.

« PreviousContinue »