The Shakespeare Thefts: In Search of the First Folios
Part literary detective story, part Shakespearean lore, The Shakespeare Thefts will charm the Bard's many fans.
The first edition of Shakespeare's collected works, the First Folio, published in 1623, is one of the most valuable books in the world and has historically proven to be an attractive target for thieves. Of the 160 First Folios listed in a census of 1902, 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. 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?-on every page; and of yet another that has a bullet lodged in its pages.
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LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - antao - LibraryThing
No Redemption for First Folio Thieves: "The Shakespeare Thefts" by Eric Rasmussen Published October 30, 2012. I’m lost in the desert, beer thirsty, hungry, and desperately searching for any sort of ... Read full review
LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - Alliebadger - LibraryThing
I think calling Eric Rasmussen the "Indiana Jones" of First Folios is overstating it a bit. An interesting read specifically for Shakespeare/history/book history nerds. I lost interest when there were ... Read full review
Two First Folio Hunters
The Durham University Copy
Four The Waiting Is the Hardest Part
The Manchester University Copy
Six The Popes Sticky Fingers
The Pembroke Copies
Eight Nationalism Bullets and a Recovered Treasure
The Williams College Copy
Sixteen Why Is The Whore of Babylon Well Thumbed?
The Hereford Cathedral Copy
Eighteen Creative Control
The William Beeston Copy
Twenty The Worlds Worst Stolen Treasure
Appendix The Making of the Shakespeare First Folio