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on 18 October 2003
This edition is extremely useful to have at home to consult, if you can't afford the Norton facsimile, but it should be treated with great caution and always checked against the Norton. I discovered from a reference in the 'Shakespeare Survey' that it is based on the "Halliwell-Phillips" facsimile of 1876 which contains numerous incorrect and pointless emendations, for example 'Tunne-dish' to the meaningless 'Tunnerdish'(a-23 p.74 in the comedies). For further information see 'Shakespeare Survey',33 (1980)and Charlton Hinman's article about the Halliwell-Phillips folio in 'Shakespeare Quarterly', 5 (1954) It's a bit naughty of Moston not to state the source of his edition.
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on 29 July 2000
The textual difficulties presented by Shakespeare's drama has been compounded in the past by the tendancy of modern editors to form what are essentially new plays out of the favourite bits of Foli and Quarto versions of plays such as Hamlet. The Folio presents an opportunity for students to cut through the crap: Hamlet first 'good' quarto (1603) is a totally different play to the Folio version, and an exact comparrison between the two is necessary when making any judgements about 'Hamlet'. Fools such as Gary Taylor, editor of the OUP H5 create new and pointelss plays, which were neither read, nor acted, in the form presented. (Oh, and the Folio, contrary to what it says above, was not an acting edition, and the plays are generally very far from the original authorial 'foul papers').
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