Front cover image for The works of Mr. William Shakespear : in eight volumes : adorn'd with cutts

The works of Mr. William Shakespear : in eight volumes : adorn'd with cutts

Print Book, English, MDCCXIV [1714]
Printed for Jacob Tonson at Shakespear's-Head ..., London, MDCCXIV [1714]
8 volumes, 41 unnumbered leaves of plates : illustrations ; 17 cm (12mo)
v. 1. Some account of the life, &c. of Mr. William Shakespear / N. Rowe
Two gentlemen of Verona
Merry wives of Windsor
Measure for measure
Comedy of errors
Much ado about nothing
v. 2. Love's labour's lost
Midsummer night's dream
Merchant of Venice
As you like it
Taming of the shrew
All's well that ends well
v. 3. Twelfth night
Winter's tale
King John
King Richard II
King Henry IV, part 1
v. 4. King Henry IV, part 2
King Henry V
King Henry VI, part 1
King Henry VI, part 2
King Henry VI, part 3
v. 5. King Richard III
King Henry VIII
Troilus and Cressida
Titus Andronicus
v. 6. Romeo and Juliet
Timon of Athens
Julius Caesar
v. 7. King Lear
Antony and Cleopatra
v. 8. Pericles
London prodigal
Thomas Lord Cromwell
Sir John Oldcastle
Yorkshire tragedy
The Rowe edition of Shakespeare's plays was first published by Jacob Tonson [the elder] in 1709 in six octavo volumes. The edition of 1714 in duodecimo, described in several sources as the third Rowe edition, contains new engravings, revisions to play texts, and an index. Though Rowe's name remained on the title page, there is evidence that an unnamed editor, possibly John Hughes (1677-1720), was responsible for preparing the text of this edition. See Bouchard, M. D. S. "A revised account of the 1714 Works of Mr. William Shakespear," Papers of the Bibliographical Society of America, vol. 115, no. 4 (Dec. 2021) : 419-461
This edition was issued under three different general title pages, each with a different imprint. The first two titles have "in eight volumes" and the third "in nine volumes." The ninth volume (printed by J. Darby for Edmund Curll also in 1714) contains Shakespeare's poems, which were not part of the Rowe edition. The ninth volume may be found as part of sets of this edition whose general title has either "in eight volumes" or "in nine volumes." For descriptions of all three general title pages in the order they were issued, see H.L. Ford, Shakespeare 1700-1740, or the Chronological Appendix in A. Murphy, Shakespeare in Print (2021), page 406. Ford states that the texts of vols. 1-8 appear to be identical under all versions of the general title page
Third edition, 1st issue.--Cf. Ford, p. 15: "very scarce."
Sets of this edition issued with the second and third versions of the general title page are described in ESTC records N25979 and T26042, respectively
General title page in vol. 1 only; vols. 2-8 have only volume title page: "The works of Mr. William Shakespear; volume the second" [etc.], with portrait vignette and imprint "Printed for Jacob Tonson in the Strand, MDCCXIV." Each play has special title page with: "Printed in the year MDCCXIV." Plays were also sold separately--Cf. Jaggard
Numerous pagination errors (particularly in vols. 3-8)
Frontispiece portrait of Shakespeare by Lud. du Guernier prefixed to vol. 1. Plate by Du Guernier or Kirkall prefixes each play's title page
Head- and tail-pieces; initials
Vol. 8 includes plays no longer attributed to Shakespeare (also included in the 1709 edition)
"An index of the most beautiful thoughts, descriptions, speeches, &c. in Shakespear's works": vol. 8, pages [399]-[419]