Shakespeare first folio up for sale

Posted on July 12, 2006 

Shakespeare first folio up for sale

A complete First Folio edition of William Shakespeare’s plays, in prime condition and still in its 17th century calf leather binding, is expected to fetch up to 3.5 million pounds ($6.10 million) at auction on Thursday.

Hailed by auctioneer Sotheby’s as the most important book in English literature, the First Folio is credited with saving for posterity many of the bard’s plays including “Macbeth,” “Twelfth Night” and “Julius Caesar” which had never before been printed.

It contains detailed notes in the margins made, it is believed, by contemporary scholars and giving an insight into the understanding and interpretation of the wordsmith’s masterworks soon after his own era.

“The profusion of markings in this volume does much to illuminate a contemporary or near-contemporary reader’s taste for, and in some measure interpretation of, Shakespeare’s works,” said Sotheby’s English manuscript expert Peter Beal.

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