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DR. FURNESS' next Variorum will be THE TEMPEST.
The remaining five volumes of the Bankside will be issued this spring. The King John of the Bankside Shakespeare will be a notable volume in every sense of the word, and, as a triumph of typographical art, will be an exhibit of which The Riverside Press may well be proud. It is well known that the old play, The Troublesome Raigne, etc., was set up partially in a blackletter of its own (unused elsewhere as far as can be discovered), abounding in curious logotypes and contracted letters. Furthermore, the blackletter was interspersed with italic type, used for setting up proper names, while a font of Arabic was laid under countribution for the stage directions—altogether a most unique and interesting jumble. of this jumble, however, the general editor of the Bankside, has insisted upon an exact fac-simile. Most editors, to carry out the claim that the Bankside Shakespeare is an absolutely accurate replication of the old quartos and folios, would doubtless have been satisfied with counterfeiting the antique and broken Elizabethan types. But the Bankside is too punctilious to take advantage of even so plausible a claim, and the result has been, that to satisfy its editor, The Riverside Press has itself cast a complete font of their “Caxton” or blackletter, logotypes and all, and will use it in manufacturing the King John. This will be, therefore, not only the first book in blackletter set up in the United States for two hundred years or more (if indeed it is not the only one), but a lasting triumph for The Riverside Press, and a testimony to the conscientiousness of THE BANKSIDE SHAKESPEARE.
MR. MORGAN's introduction to the fourteenth Bankside Shake speare concludes with the following sentence:
“ If called upon to state the net results of almost twenty years of Shakespeare study, I think now that I should put it thus : Shakespeare was a practical playwright. He was much more, but he was that, first, last and all the time. And he was not ashamed of it! Be ing a playwright, he could not afford to be obscure. He earned friends and fortune, not by posing for the grammarian, the purist, the cryptographer, or the conjectural reader, but by packing his theatres. He flashed his meanings and made his points from the mouths of his actors to the understanding of his audience. Has immortality come to him because he was the soul of his age—the applause, delight and wonder of his stage-or in spite of it? Would he have been more widely studied, worshipped and loved to-day if he had been unintelligible to his own neighbors ? Would he have been the soul of any other age, had he not first been the soul of his own? For myself I should not care to waste a moment in arguing these questions.
Perhaps a Browning society here and there in these United States might ponder over this paragraph not altogether unprofitably.
In view of the greatly reduced space at the disposal of the Editors, it is urgently requested that contributors refrain as much as possible from quotations from the Plays, referring instead to passages in point by the Bankside line notation (or if not practicable, to the act, scene and line of the Globe Edition). Proof is not sent to authors unless particularly requested, or unless the subject matter require it. Please address all matter intended for the Editors, books for Review, etc., to Box 323, Westfield, UNION Co., New Jersey. The Editors cannot undertake to answer personal letters, or to return unused matter unless stamped envelopes are enclosed for the purpose.
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