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Shake-speares sonnets.
1609

STC 22353, title page

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STC 22353, title page
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Images that are under Folger copyright are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License. This allows you to use our images without additional permission provided that you cite the Folger Shakespeare Library as the source and you license anything you create using the images under the same or equivalent license. For more information, including permissions beyond the scope of this license, see Permissions. The Folger waives permission fees for non-commercial publication by registered non-profits, including university presses, regardless of the license they use. For images copyrighted by an entity other than the Folger, please contact the copyright holder for permission information.

Copy-specific information
Creator: William Shakespeare
Title: Shake-speares sonnets. Neuer before imprinted.
Date: At London : By G. Eld for T[homas]. T[horpe]. and are to be solde by William Aspley, 1609.
Repository: Folger Shakespeare Library, Washington, DC, USA
Call number and opening: STC 22353, title page
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Item Creator
William Shakespeare
Item Title
Shake-speares sonnets. Neuer before imprinted.
Item Date
At London : By G. Eld for T[homas]. T[horpe]. and are to be solde by William Aspley, 1609.
Repository
Folger Shakespeare Library, Washington DC, USA
Call Number
STC 22353, title page

Institution Rights and Document Citation

Terms of use
Images that are under Folger copyright are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License. This allows you to use our images without additional permission provided that you cite the Folger Shakespeare Library as the source and you license anything you create using the images under the same or equivalent license. For more information, including permissions beyond the scope of this license, see Permissions. The Folger waives permission fees for non-commercial publication by registered non-profits, including university presses, regardless of the license they use. For images copyrighted by an entity other than the Folger, please contact the copyright holder for permission information.

Copy-specific information
Creator: William Shakespeare
Title: Shake-speares sonnets. Neuer before imprinted.
Date: At London : By G. Eld for T[homas]. T[horpe]. and are to be solde by William Aspley, 1609.
Repository: Folger Shakespeare Library, Washington, DC, USA
Call number and opening: STC 22353, title page
View online bibliographic record

At first glance, this copy of Shakespeare’s Sonnets, also published in 1609, might look just like the copy at the University of Manchester Library. However, there is a slight difference in the second-to-last line of the imprint. While the book was still printed "AT LONDON By G. Eld for T.T.," this copy and others in this variant state "are to be solde by William Aspley" rather than John Wright. Of the thirteen extant copies of the 1609 Sonnets, only four bear this imprint.

William Aspley had moved the previous year to a shop in St. Paul's Churchyard, the center of the early modern English book trade, at the sign of the Parrot. John Wright's shop was located near Christ Church, which was not too far north, but Katherine Duncan-Jones notes that it was on one of the two main routes by which travelers would enter London. Selling the edition at two booksellers' shops might, then, have been an attempt to maximize the number of copies sold. 

Mr. and Mrs. Folger acquired this copy at an auction of books owned by the journalist and book collector Herschel V. Jones. The sale catalog advertised it as the "first copy to be sold in America" and emphasized that it was "ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY TO ROUND OUT A COLLECTION OF SHAKESPEARE QUARTOS."

Written by Erin A. McCarthy

Sources

Blayney, Peter W.M. The Bookshops in Paul's Cross Churchyard. London: Bibliographical Society, 1990.

Duncan-Jones, Katherine, ed. Shakespeare’s Sonnets. Arden 3. London: Thomason, 1997.

Folger Shakespeare Library, Folger Papers archive.

Hammond, Paul, ed. Shakespeare's Sonnets: An Original Spelling Text. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2012.

Straznicky, Marta, ed. Shakespeare's Stationers: Studies in Cultural Bibliography. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2012.

Last updated March 26, 2018