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TROILUS AND CRESSIDA.

VOL. VI.

B

::

The Famous Historie of Troylus and Cresseid. Excellently expressing the beginning of their loues, with the conceited wooing of Pandarus Prince of Licia. Written by William Shakespeare. London Imprinted by G. Eld for R. Bonian and H. Walley, and are to be sold at the spred Eagle in Paules Church-yeard, ouer against the great North doore. 1609. 4to. 46 leaves.

The Historie of Troylus and Cresseida. As it was acted by the Kings Maiesties seruants at the Globe. Written by William Shakespeare. London Imprinted by G. Eld for R. Bonian and H. Wala ley, and are to be sold at the spred Eagle in Paules Church-yeard, ouer against the great North doore. 1609. 4to. 45 leaves.

In the folio of 1623, “The Tragedie of Troylus and Cressida" occupies twenty-nine pages, the Prologue filling the first page and the last being left blank. It retains its place in the later folios ; but in that of 1685 the Prologue is placed at the head of the page on which the play commences.

INTRODUCTION.

We will first state the facts respecting the early impressions of "Troilus and Cressida,” and then make such observations upon them as seem necessary.

The play was originally printed in 1609. It was formerly supposed that there were two editions in that year, but they were merely different issues of the same impression : the body of the work (with two exceptions, pointed out hereafter) is alike in each ; they were from the types of the same printer, and were published by the same booksellers. The title-pages, as may be seen on the opposite leaf, vary materially; but there is another more remarkable alteration, On the title-page of the copies first circulated, it is not stated that the drama had been represented by any company; and in a sort of preface headed, “A never Writer to an ever Reader. News,” it is asserted that it had never been “ staled with the stage, never clapper-clawed with the palms of the vulgar;" in other words, that the play had not been acted. This was probably then true ; but as “ Troilus and Cressida” was very soon afterwards brought upon the stage, it became necessary for the publishers to substitute a new title-page, and to suppress their preface : accordingly a re-issue of the same edition took place, by the title-page of which it appeared, that the play was printed “as it was acted by the King's Majesty's servants at the Globe.”

In the Stationers' Registers are two entries, of distinct dates, relating to a play, or plays, called “Troilus and Cressida :" they are in the following terms:-

7 Feb. 1602-3 “Mr. Roberts] The booke of Troilus and Cresseda, as yt is

acted by my Lo. Chamberlens men.” " 28 Jan. 1608-9 “Rich. Bonion and Hen. Whalleys] Entered for their copie

under t'hands of Mr. Segar Deputy to Sir Geo. Bucke, and Mr. Warden Lownes: A booke called the History

of Troylus and Cressula." The edition of 1609 was, doubtless, published in consequence of the entry of “ 28 Jan. 1608-9;" but if Roberts printed a “Troilus and Cressida," whether by Shakespeare or by any other dramatist, in consequence of the earlier entry of “7 Feb. 1602-3," none such has come down to our time. Shakespeare's tragedy was not again

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