Shakespeare, the Globe & the World

Shakespeare, the Globe & the World

Shakespeare, the Globe & the World

Shakespeare, the Globe & the World

Synopsis

This book explores the influence Shakespeare has had on world culture.

Excerpt

This book celebrates the glory of Shakespeare. It has grown out of an exhibition of manuscripts, books, and other objects brought together to illuminate Shakespeare and his works, the world of the English Renaissance in which he lived, and the enduring mark he left on his own and later times.

The illustrations in the text derive from rare materials obtained for the occasion from the vaults of the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, D.C. Conceived as a memorial to Shakespeare, this magnificent library was a gift to the American people from Henry Clay Folger and his wife Emily Jordan Folger, who erected it in 1932 to house the vast collection of Shakespeareana they had acquired in the course of many years of dedicated and painstaking search. the rare, and in some cases unique, materials which make the Folger the preeminent center for Shakespeare research in the world today still constitute the heart of the Library's collection. During the forty-seven years since the Library's founding, however, it has expanded the range of its holdings to encompass the whole age of Shakespeare and, more generally, the civilization of Western Europe from the Renaissance to the early modern period.

It is appropriate to acknowledge here the great debt owed those who have contributed so much to the original project, especially Margaret Welch, Elizabeth Niemyer, James Elder, and John Andrews of the Folger and Stuart Silver and George Trescher of New York City. It is also a pleasure to thank the inimitable author of the book that marks the occasion. Sam Schoenbaum has provided a narrative of remarkable grace and erudition, reminding us yet once more that, for all the influence the English Renaissance had on Shakespeare's work, he was (as Ben Jonson was the first to observe)"not of an age, but for all time."

Finally, as project director, I must stress that this book could not have been produced without the encouragement and generous assistance afforded by the National Endowment for the Humanities and the three corporate sponsors: Metropolitan Life Insurance Company, Exxon Corporation, and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.

Philip A. Knachel Associate Director Folger Shakespeare Library . . .

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