This is a facsimile reprint of the second edition of Bowdler’s famous collection of Shakespeare’s plays, first published in 1820. Following the first edition, which was most likely edited by his sister, Thomas Bowdler completed this collection himself. His practice of expurgating material he deemed improper or offensive—especially to the perceived delicate sensibilities of women and children—became synonymous with this type of censorship. He believed his ‘bowdlerized’ Shakespeare was more appropriate to grace the libraries of British families of the period. His edition remained popular throughout the Victorian age and was published in many different editions. This second edition includes Bowdler’s introductory notes to some of the plays and is generally considered to be his best work.
Volume I Tempest. Two Gentlemen of Verona. Merry Wives of Windsor. Twelfth-Night: or, What You Will. Volume II Bowdler. Measure for Measure. Much Ado about Nothing. Midsummer-night’s Dream. Love’s Labour’s Lost. Volume III Merchant of Venice. As You Like It. All’s Well that Ends Well. Taming of the Shrew. Volume IV Winter’s Tale. Comedy of Errors. Macbeth. King John. Volume V The Life and Death of King Richard II. Preface of the Editor to the Two Parts of Henry IV. First Part of King Henry IV. Second Part of King Henry IV. King Henry V. Volume VI First Part of King Henry VI. Second Part of King Henry VI. Third Part of King Henry VI. Volume VII Life and Death of King Richard III. King Henry VIII. Troilus and Cressida. Volume VIII Timon of Athens. Coriolanus. Julius Caesar. Anthony and Cleopatra. Volume IX Cymbeline. Titus Andronicus. King Lear. Volume X Romeo and Juliet. Preface to Hamlet by Thomas Bowdler. Hamlet, Prince of Denmark. Preface to Othello by Thomas Bowdler. Othello, the Moor of Venice.