London: Printed for H. Herringman, and are to be sold by Joseph Knight and Francis Saunders, 1685. Fourth Folio.
Folio; Fine; bound in imitation period style, with old leather used for the boards, new spine, and endpapers using old-style paper; bookplates preserved onto front pastedown; pages measure 360mm x 234mm.;
The First leaf with with the portrait and verses have been restored in the margins with modern blank paper, not affecting the text and engraving. There are marginal repairs to the title page, where the top lines of the title page margin have been restored in facsimile. Two leaves, signatures 313-314, have been supplied from another copy. The portrait, title page, and first few leaves have slightly more wear than the remainder. There are minor stains, minor closed tears, slight wear, and extremely minor worming to the lower margin, almost exclusively to last few signatures.;
Variant imprint, without the usual "for H. Herringman, E. Brewster, R. Chiswell, and R. Bently", but rather "Printed for H. Herringman, and are to be sold by Joseph Knight and Francis Saunders". First State, with borders on all pages;
With the bookplates of both Sir John Leveson-Gower of Trentham (1675-1709) and Thomas Fowler (1760-1815). Detailed information about the provenance available upon request.
Shelved Dupont Bookstore
This is the only edition among the four Shakespeare Folios in which each play does not begin a fresh page. Unlike other three folios, the Fourth Folio is not a page-for-page reprint of the earlier edition. The text is clearly divided into three sections, each starting a fresh set of pagination: the Comedies (Signatures. A-Z, paged 1-272), the Histories and the Tragedies up to the end of Romeo and Juliet (Signatures. 2B-2Z, *3A-*3E, paged 1-328), and the rest of the Tragedies and the seven apocryphal plays (Signatures: 3A-4C, paged 1-303). [Meisei University]
Two pages of Love's Labour's Lost (Sig. L1 and L1v) are conspicuous in that the text is set continuously and in smaller type (8-point rather than 12-point.) They were apparently reset to print the text equivalent to 3 pages into 2, after noticing that they had missed a page. 2B1, 2C1, 2C3, 2E3, 2O1 have the signatures hand-corrected (or in the case of 2E3, entirely in hand, or in 2O1, thick 'OO' covering an incorrect 'Pp'), as usual, due to the printer misprinting some signatures. [Dawson 1951]
The Fourth Folio "reprints the folio of 1664 without change except in the way of modernizing the spelling, and of increasing the number of initial capitals within the sentence." [Lee, 1922]
"The Fourth Folio, published in 1685, included the same 43 plays in the same sequence as the Third – and indeed exactly echoed its claim on the title page to have “added” 7 plays “Never before Published in Folio.” These were in fact also reprinted from the Third Folio." [University of Oregon]