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PREFACE TO THE FIRST EDITION,
The First Part of King Henry the Sixth was printed for the first time, so far as we know, in the Folio of 1623. The same edition contained also for the first time in their present form, The second part of Henry the Sixt, with the death of the Good Duke Humfrey,' and 'The third Part of Henry the Sixt, with the death of the Duke of Yorke.'
The play upon which the Second Part of Henry the Sixth was founded was first printed in quarto (Q.), in 1594, with the following title:
The First part of the Con-tention betwixt the two famous Houses of Yorke / and Lancaster, with the death of the good |
1 Duke Humphrey : | And the banishment and death of the Duke of | Suffolke, and the Tragicall end of the proud Cardinall | of Winchester, with the notable Rebellion of lacke Cade : | And the Duke of Yorkes first claime vnto the Crowne. | LONDON | Printed
1 by Thomas Creed, for Thomas Millington, | and are to be sold at his shop vnder Saint Peters | Church in Cornwall. 1594. I
The only copy known of this edition is in the Bodleian Library (Malone, Add. 870)', and is probably the same which was once in Malone's possession, and which he collated with the second Quarto printed in 1600. Mr Halliwell, in the preface to The first sketches of the second and third parts of King Henry the Sixth,' edited by him for the Shakespeare Society, is inclined to doubt this, on the ground that Malone quotes, from the copy in his possession, a reading which does not exist in that now in the Bodleian. The passage in question is in Scene ix. line 12, 'Honouring him as if he were their king :' on which Mr Halliwell in his note observes, Malone, who has collated his copy of the edition of 1600, “printed by W. W.," with a copy of the 1594 edition formerly in his possession, distinctly writes
1 I have since found a copy in the Library of Lord Mostyn. (W. A. W.]
“Thinking him as if he were their king,” as the reading of his copy of the first edition. If so, it must have been a different copy from that now in the Bodleian, from which the present text is reprinted, and another instance of the curious variations in different copies of the same editions, which were first discovered by Steevens (Boswell's Malone, Vol. x. p. 73), and recently applied to good use by Mr Collier.' Mr Halliwell has here inadvertently fallen into error. Malone's collation is made in a copy of the edıtion of 1600, in which the line stands thus:
Honouring him as if he were a king.' At the foot of the page he wrote their king,' which is the reading of the edition of 1594 for the last two words, but which Mr Halliwell misread 'thinking' and regarded as a various reading for ‘Honouring.' It is still possible, therefore, that Malone's copy and that at present in the Bodleian may be identical.
The second edition (Q.) of the First Part of the Contention appeared in quarto in 1600, with the following title: The First part of the Con- tention betwixt the two famous
1 hou- ses of Yorke and Lancaster, with the death of the good Duke l
| Humphrey: | And the banishment and death of the Duke of | Suffolke, and the Tragical end of the prowd Cardinall of Winchester, with the notable Rebellion of | Iacke Cade : | And the Duke of Yorkes first clayme to the Crowne. I LONDON | Printed by Valentine
1 Simmes for Thomas Millington, and I are to be sold at his shop vnder S. Peters church in Cornewall. 1600.
Copies with this title are in the Library of the Duke of Devonshire, and in the Bodleian (Malone, 867). An imperfect copy, wanting the last seven leaves, is in the Capell collection. Another impression bearing the same date, ‘Printed by W. W. for Thomas Millington,' is said to exist, but we have been unable to find it. The MS. title quoted by Mr Halliwell from a copy in the Bodleian (Malone, 36) is prefixed to what appears to us unquestionably the same edition as the above. The minute correspondence of misplaced and defective letters between this copy and Capell's, with which, as well as with the other copy in the Bodleian, we have compared it, proves beyond question that all three must have been printed from the same form, and that the MS. title inserted in Malone's copy is out of place. So far therefore from Capell's imperfect copy of this
. edition being unique, as Mr Halliwell states, there are at least two other perfect copies in existence, besides one which only wants the title-page. In Lowndes's Bibliographer's Manual (ed. Bohn, p. 2281), another is said to be in the possession of Mr Tite. The late Mr George Daniel is stated, on the same authority, to have had the editions printed by Valentine Simmes and by W. W. in one volume, but they were not sold at his sale, and we have been unable to trace them.
In 1619, a third edition (Qz) without date, printed by Isaac Jaggard, and including also The True Tragedy of Richard Duke of York,' appeared with the following title:
The Whole Contention betweene the two Famous | Houses, LANCASTER and | YORKE. With the Tragicall ends of the good Duke | Humfrey, Richard Duke of Yorke, / and King Henrie the sixt. Diuided into two Parts : And newly corrected and enlarged. Written by William Shake-speare, Gent. | Printed at London, for
T. P. 1
On the title-page of his copy of this edition, Capell has added in MS. the date ‘1619.—at the same time with the Pericles that follows; as appears by the continuation of the signatures, The signatures of The Whole Contention' are
from A to Q in fours, while in Pericles, ‘Printed for T. P. 1619,' the first page has signature R, which shows that the two must have formed part of the same volume.
“The True Tragedy of Richard Duke of York,' which formed the ground-work of The Third Part of King Henry the Sixth, was first printed in small 8vo. in 1595, with the following title:
The true Tragedie of Richard | Duke of Yorke, and the death of good King Henrie the Sixt, with the whole contention betweene the two Houses Lancaster | and Yorke, as it was sundrie times | acted by the Right Honoura-ble the Earle of Pem-brooke his seruants. | Printed at London by P. S. for Thomas Milling-lton, and are to be sold at his shoppe vnder | Saint Peters Church in' Cornwal, 1595.1
A unique copy of this edition is in the Bodleian Library (Malone, 876). Although printed in 8vo. we have quoted it as (Q.), in order to avoid introducing a new notation.
The second edition (Q.) was printed in 1600, with the following title:
The True Tragedie of Richarde Duke of Yorke, and the
1 death of good | King Henrie the sixt: With the whole contention betweene the two | Houses, Lancaster and Yorke ; as it was / sundry times acted by the Right | Honourable the Earle of Pembrooke his seruantes. Printed at London by W. W. for Thomas Millington, , and are to be sold at his shoppe vnder Saint Peters Church
1 in Cornewall. 1600.
Copies of this edition are in the Duke of Devonshire's Library, the Bodleian (Malone, 36), and the British Museum. In Malone's Shakespeare (ed. 1790, Vol. 1. Pt. I. p. 235), among the ‘Dramatick Pieces on which plays were formed by Shakespeare,' an edition of The True Tragedy is mentioned, bearing date ‘1600, V. S. for Thomas Millington,' but in a note to the • Third Part of King Henry VI.' (Vol. VI. p. 261) he confesses, 'I have never seen the quarto copy of the Second part of The