Shakespeare Documented is still growing! Currently, two thirds of the descriptions and 98% of the images are available in the resource. Descriptive text will continue to be added, updated and expanded. Visit our About page to learn more about the project scope.
To learn more about searching and using Shakespeare Documented please visit Explore.
This diary entry, written by Richard Stonley on Tuesday, June 12, 1593, records the first known purchase of the first edition of Shakespeare's first printed work, the narrative poem Venus and Adonis (London, 1593).
This is the only known copy in existence of the first edition of Shakespeare’s first printed work, Venus and Adonis, which appeared in 1593. During his lifetime Shakespeare was known first and foremost as the author of Venus and Adonis.
Venus and Adonis was William Shakespeare’s first work to be entered into a Stationers’ Company register. This epic poem was entered on April 18, 1593 into the Stationers' Liber B by Richard Field (entered as "ffeild"), a printer from Stratford-upon-Avon.
The second edition of Venus and Adonis was published in 1594, only one year after the first edition. The speed with which it was republished suggests that the poem was popular enough to have already sold out or nearly sold out.