The City of London Corporation has organized a special exhibition at Guildhall Library to celebrate the 400th anniversary of the first printed edition of William Shakespeare’s plays. Among the highlights of the exhibit is the First Folio, one of the earliest printed editions of Shakespeare’s plays. However, this rare edition will only be on display for five hours on Monday, April 24, and each hour of the day will be accompanied by a 10-minute talk.
The limited display time of the First Folio is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to view one of the most significant books ever written in the English language. Literary experts recognize the First Folio as one of the most influential books ever written in the English language. This volume, also known as the First Folio, was published in 1623, seven years after Shakespeare’s death. It is considered a pivotal work that saved half of his plays from being lost, including some of his most famous works like Macbeth, Twelfth Night, and As You Like It.
The Guildhall Library is about half-a-mile from Jaggard’s Print House where the First Folio was printed. It is also opposite St Mary Aldermanbury Garden, where Shakespeare’s friends and fellow actors, John Heminge and Henry Condell, are buried. A memorial to the book is located there, featuring a bust of Shakespeare.
Dr. Peter Ross, the principal librarian at the Guildhall Library, says that the copy owned by The City of London Corporation is one of the most pristine of the 230 that still exist and one of the around 90 that are still complete. Without Heminge and Condell’s collection, half of Shakespeare’s work might have been lost.
Visitors to the library will also have the chance to view two small and original copies of Henry IV Part One and Othello, as well as a replica copy of the First Folio that they can look through. The exhibition at the Guildhall Library is a must-see for Shakespeare enthusiasts, historians, and anyone who appreciates great literature. The exhibit offers a unique opportunity to learn about the history of Shakespeare’s collection of plays and to view some of his most famous works, which have been carefully preserved for future generations.
The limited display time of the First Folio is a mystery as organisers did not give any explanation for their decision. However, Wendy Hyde, Chair of The City of London Corporation’s Culture, Heritage, and Libraries Committee, expressed pride in the library’s ownership of the book, which has been conserved as a valuable heritage asset for the benefit of future generations.
In conclusion, the exhibition at the Guildhall Library is an opportunity to celebrate the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s first printed edition of plays. The limited display of the First Folio is an opportunity to view one of the most significant books ever written in the English language. The exhibition is a must-see for Shakespeare enthusiasts, historians, and anyone who appreciates great literature.