A SELECT COLLECTION OF OLD PLAYS (RICHARD DODSLEY)
Series Note: This series consisted of twelve volumes which were edited and published by Robert Dodsley of Pall-Mall, London in 1744-45. The series (sometimes referred to as Dodsley's Old Plays) was a new kind of literary project: the first to publish in a single collected reprint edition the "canon" of English plays (61 in all) of the early modern and Elizabethan period (1500-1600). Dodsley stated in the series's preface that his intention was "to snatch some of the best Pieces of our old Dramatic Writers from total Neglect and Oblivion" and (according to the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography), in doing so, "he produced an unprecedented repository of texts in the English theatre tradition to which all subsequent editors would be indebted".
This series was republished in three subsequent revised and expanded editions:
- Isaac Reed, ed., A Select Collection of Old Plays (2nd ed.). London: J. Dodsley, 1780, 12 volumes.
- John Payne Collier, ed., A Select Collection of Old Plays (3rd ed.). London: Septimus Prowett, 1825-27, 12 volumes.
- W. Carew Hazlitt (William Carew Hazlitt), ed., A Select Collection of Old English Plays (4th ed.). London: Reeves and Turner, 1874-76, 15 volumes.
Later series and anthologies imitated or inspired by A Select Collection of Old Plays included the Mermaid Series (London: Vizetelly & Co., 1887- ), the New Mermaids series (London: Ernest Benn, 1950s- ) and A Collection of Old English Plays, edited by A. H. Bullen (Alfred Henry Bullen), 4 volumes (London: John C. Nimmo, 1882-89).
Volume Number / Play Titles and Dramatists
The promises of God / by John Bale ; New custom ; The four P's / by John Heywood ; Grammer Gurton's needle ; The pinner of Wakefield ; Damon and Pithias / by Richard Edwards
The tragedy of Gorboduc / by Lord Buckhurst ; Campaspe / by John Lilly ; The history of Edward the Second / by Christopher Marlow ; Mustapha / by Lord Brooke
Green's tu quoque / by Joseph Cooke ; The honest whore / by Thomas Decker ; The hog hath lost his pearl / by Robert Tailor ; Fuimus Troes ; The white devil / by John Webster
The malcontent / by John Marston ; A woman kill'd with kindness / by Thomas Heywood ; Eastward hoe / by Ben Johnson ; The widow's tears / by George Chapman ; The revenger's tragedy / by Cyril Tourneur
Lingua ; A mad world my masters / by Thomas Middleton ; 'Tis pity she's a whore / by John Ford ; Grim the collier of Croydon / by J. T. ; Microcosmus / by Thomas Nabbs
The widow / by Ben Johnson, John Fletcher, & Thomas Middleton ; A match at midnight / by William Rowley ; The dumb knight / by Lewis Machin ; The muses looking-glass / by Thomas Randolph ; The jovial crew / by Broome
The heir / by May ; The old couple / by May ; The antiquary / by Shakerly Marmion ; The goblins / by John Suckling ; The shepherd's holiday / by Rutter
The city madam ; A new way to pay old debts ; The guardian ; The unnatural combat ; The picture [all by Philip Massinger]
Albumazar ; The gemester / by Mr. Shirley ; The bird in a cage / by Mr. Shirley ; The city night-cap / by Mr. Davenport ; The parson's wedding / by Thomas Killigrew
The city-match / by Jasper Maine ; The lost lady / by Sir William Barclay ; The ordinary / by Mr. Cartwright ; The Queen of Aragon / by Mr. Habington ; The marriage night / by Lord Falkland
A dialogue on plays and players. Tancred and Gismundda / by Robert Wilmot / Cornelia, by Thomas Kykd / The merry devil of Edmonton. Andromena: or, the merchant's wife / by J.S. / The mayor of Quinborough / by Tho. Middleton
Elvira: or, the worst not always true / by George Lord Digby / Love will find out the way, by T.B. / All mistaken: or the mad couple / by James Howard / The adventures of five hours / by Samuel Tuke / The revenge: or a match in Newgate
Author of this page:
David Paul Wagner