The Collation

Research and Exploration at the Folger

Posts By: Georgianna Ziegler

Announcing a New Folger Fellowship in Honor of Margaret Hannay

We’re proud to announce the creation of a new fellowship at the Folger Shakespeare Library. In partnership with the Society for the Study of Early Modern Women, the Folger Institute will offer a fellowship to scholars working on studies of women, genders, and/or sexualities in the early modern world, who can demonstrate a clear need to utilize the Folger’s collections. This $2500 award will allow a scholar to spend one month in residence at the Folger.… Continue Reading

Princely New Year’s Gift? A Newly-Discovered Manuscript

What better way to greet the New Year than with a ceremony of gift giving among friends and acquaintances? It was certainly a popular way to celebrate at the courts of Elizabeth I and her successor, James I. Gifts came from courtiers and household members of all degrees, beginning with earls and their ladies down to the queen’s apothecary and musicians, as well as poets and others from outside the court seeking favor.… Continue Reading

The Earliest Recorded Shakespeare in America?

We know that a number of the founding fathers (and mothers) in 18th-century America knew their Shakespeare. John and Abigail Adams frequently quoted from Shakespeare in their letters; Thomas Jefferson recommended reading Shakespeare in a course of private study; and the Folger has a letter dated 1776 from General Charles Lee quoting from Richard III to complain that he is in the dark about the enemy’s intentions and where he should be: “I may be in the North, when as Richard the third says, I should serve my sovereign in the West” (Folger MS Y.c.1374 (1)).… Continue Reading

A new copy of Foxe’s Actes and Monuments

The Folger Shakespeare Library already has two copies of John Foxe’s Actes and Monuments, published in 1570, so why would we want another, especially as it is only volume 1, of a two-volume set? The answer provides a good example of how we decide what rare items to add to the collection. We purchased this volume in June from Bonham’s auction house in London.… Continue Reading

From Stage to E-page: Theater Archives at the Folger Library

[This post was first delivered as a talk at the 2012 conference of the Shakespeare Association of America as part of a session called “The Once and Future Performance Archive.”] The Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, DC opened in 1932. It is representative of a private institution whose collections were very much shaped by the interest of its founders, Henry and Emily Folger.… Continue Reading

Spotlight on a calligrapher

In an era when many schools don’t even teach cursive handwriting anymore because everyone taps out their messages on screens, it may seem quaint to focus on a woman known for her handwriting. But that’s exactly why we’re attracted to Esther Inglis, featured in the Folger’s current exhibition, “Shakespeare’s Sisters: Voices of English and European Women Writers, 1500-1700”. Inglis was a master of calligraphy, an art form that raises handwriting to a whole new height.… Continue Reading

Women marking the text

“I beegan, to ourloke this Booke . . . .”  These words are written by Lady Anne Clifford on the title page of her copy of John Selden’s Titles of Honor (1631), which is featured in the first case of our new exhibition Shakespeare’s Sisters: Voices of English and European Women Writers, 1500-1700 , opening on February 3rd. Clifford's inscription on Selden's Titles of honor Not only did she “read” and “overlook” her book, she also made sure that her secretaries marked the passages of particular interest to her, and sometimes she went back herself and made a note. … Continue Reading

Reading the romantics

What do Folger staff read in their spare time?  Not necessarily Shakespeare!  I’ve recently finished a wonderful book by Daisy Hay called The Young Romantics, published in the spring of 2010 and now available in hardback, paperback, or on a Kindle near you.  Hay has an amazing grasp of the lives of the second-generation Romantics—Shelley, Keats, Byron, Mary Shelley, her stepsister Claire Claremont, Leigh Hunt—and a host of others in their expanding circle. … Continue Reading