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William Shakespeare's Poems

Price: $25.00
Sale Price: $18.75
Shakespeare’s verse, like his plays, has established itself at the very foundation of English literature: again and again the reader is confronted with phrases that have become proverbial (“Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?”) and with combinations of words (“the remembrance of things past”) that bear the special resonance of cultural icons. Only the King James version of the Bible can claim a greater influence over the shape and cadence of English-language expression.

Nearly all the best-known and most enduring of Shakespeare’s poems, the 154 sonnets, were written in the first decade of his theatrical career. These compellingly personal works were circulated in handwritten copies among their author’s circle of acquaintances in the mid-to-late 1590s, and were published in book form in 1609. The first attempt to collect a larger range of Shakespeare’s lyric verse did not occur until the 1640 Poems was issued, nearly a quarter-century after the poet’s death. This unauthorized edition, printed in the small octavo “pocket” format characteristic of the times, was published by John Benson, a bookseller specializing in broadside ballads, popular literature, and music. This Octavo Edition reproduces one of the fewer than fifty surviving copies.


-Commentary by Arthur Freeman, author of books and articles on the literature and bibliography of the age of Shakespeare
-Searchable live text
-Magnify up to 1000%


-Digital images of every page of this rare book, cover to cover, in full color, presented as uncropped spreads
-Print and Thumbnails files for creating printed references
-PDF file on CD-ROM with all of Adobe Reader’s viewing, navigation, and search features
-Octavo Digital Guide and Help files


- Adobe Reader 5.0 or later 
- Windows PC with Pentium processor running Windows 95 or later
- Macintosh Power Mac running OS 9.2, or OS X 10.1 or later. Linux 2.2 kernel on X86 computer
- Color Monitor (15" or larger, capable of displaying millions of colors recommended)
- CD-ROM drive

The original book imaged for this digital edition: 5 9/16 x 3 9/16 inches (141 x 91 mm)
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