The New Folger Library editions of Shakespeare's plays put readers in touch with current ways of thinking about Shakespeare. Each text is based directly on what the editors consider the best early printed version of the play. Each volume contains full explanatory notes on pages facing the text of the play, as well as a helpful introduction to Shakespeare's language. The accounts of William Shakespeare's life, his theater, and the publication of his plays present the latest scholarship, and the annotated reading lists suggest sources of further information. The illustrations of objects, clothing, and mythological figures mentioned in the plays are drawn from the Library's vast holdings of rare books., At the conclusion of each play there is a full essay by an outstanding scholar who assesses the play in light of today's interests and concerns.
Whether experienced as a revenge tragedy or as a profound psychological study, HAMLET is the most popular of Shakespeare's plays for readers and theater audiences. The New Folger Library edition features brief and simple clarification of seventeenth-century language, scene-by-scene plot summaries, and explanatory notes illuminating obscure and obsolete expressions.