The Shakespeare Thefts: In Search of the First Folios

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Not The Queen? Published in , the copies of the first edition of William Shakespeare's collected works, known as the First Folio, has been sought after relentlessly by kings, earls, and bibliophiles.

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In his effort to track down the extant copies renowned Shakespeare scholar Eric Rasmussen and his team of First Folio hunters embarked on an incredible adventure around the world. This fast-paced narrative takes us from the court rooms of England to high-security vaults in the rare book rooms of Japan, encountering thieves, reclusive librarians, and eccentric billionaires along the way, all lusting for one of the world's most valuable books.

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Eric Rasmussen, Ph.D.

This fascinating account explores how manuscript hunters identify a book's past through distinguishing marks: a bullet hole, desecrated pages, and splashes of red that resemble blood; and how a book's location and condition can reveal its story. Part literary detective story, part Shakespearean lore, The Shakespeare Thefts is a rare glimpse between the covers of one of the most coveted books in the world. Want more? Advanced embedding details, examples, and help! Publication date Topics Shakespeare, William, -- Folios. Of the First Folios listed in a census of , 14 were subsequently stolen-and only two of these were ever recovered.

In his efforts to catalog all these precious First Folios, renowned Shakespeare scholar Eric Rasmussen embarked on a riveting journey around the globe, involving run-ins with heavily tattooed criminal street gangs in Tokyo, bizarre visits with eccentric, reclusive billionaires, and intense battles of wills with secretive librarians.

He explores the intrigue surrounding the Earl of Pembroke, arguably Shakespeare's boyfriend, to whom the First Folio is dedicated and whose personal copy is still missing. He investigates the uncanny sequence of events in which a wealthy East Coast couple drowned in a boating accident and the next week their First Folio appeared for sale in Kansas.

Shakespeare: Original pronunciation (The Open University)

We hear about Folios that were censored, the pages ripped out of them, about a volume that was marked in red paint-or is it blood? Part literary detective story, part Shakespearean lore, The Shakespeare Thefts will charm the Bard's many fans"-- Includes bibliographical references and index A literary detective story -- The most hated man in England : the Gondomar copy -- First Folio hunters -- A Cuban fraud : the Durham University copy -- The waiting is the hardest part -- Unrecovered : the Manchester University copy -- The Pope's sticky fingers -- A close personal relationship : the Pembroke copies -- Nationalism, bullets, and a recovered treasure -- The bibliomaniac : the Sir Thomas Phillipps copy -- Looking into Shakespeare's eyes -- Fell in the weeping brook : the Fiske Harris copy -- Got to get ourselves back to the garden -- The King's companion : Royalist copies, Puritan copies -- A literary thief, a bootlegger, a shoe salesman, and Hitler : the Williams College copy -- Why is 'The Whore of Babylon' well thumbed?


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