Thursday, April 24, 2014

Bard's book

Following the purchase of a book on eBay for $4,050 (€2,931). New York antiquarian booksellers Daniel Wechsler and George Koppelman have become convinced that they have found the annotated dictionary belonging to none other than William Shakespeare. John Baret's An Alvearie or Quadruple Dictionarie (IMAGE OF TITLE PAGE ABOVE) was published in 1580 and this particular copy contains thousands of annotations in a contemporary handwriting. Wechsler and Koppelman have spent the past 6 years linking the marginalia directly to the composition of some of Shakespeare's best known works, including Hamlet, Romeo and Juliet, and many of the sonnets. Although he has not yet had time to weigh the evidence, Shakespeare biographer and scholar Stephen Greenblatt comments, "It would reinforce, in a fascinating way, Shakespeare's passion for language. We know that Shakespeare had an eye out for unusual words – but we have only limited knowledge of where he went to find them."

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