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Jonson's Catiline with Special Reference to its Sources. The scope and sureness of Miss Wright's classical knowledge have spared me many plodding hours. I have not always agreed with her results, at times I have omitted citations I thought irrelevant, at times I have made substitutions that seemed to me more nearly parallel to the text, and I have added much new material; but even with these deductions, a heavy share of the credit belongs to her. I need hardly state that I have verified every citation. Another debt which I owe, and take equal pleasure in acknowledging, is to Mr. W. A. White of New York City, for his kindness in lending me the Quartos of 1611 and 1635 for collation. I also desire to convey my thanks, for help in various matters of detail, to Professors Hanns Oertel, Frederick W. Williams, Clarence W. Mendell, and Henry B. Wright of Yale University; and to the Yale Elizabethan Club for the use of their copy of the 1616 Folio. I wish also to acknowledge the uniform consideration and courtesy of the officials of the Yale University Library, the Northwestern University Library, the Newberry Library of Chicago, the University of Minnesota Library, and the St. Paul Public Library. Most especially do I wish to express my gratitude to Professor Albert S. Cook, without whose inspiring counsel and aid this work would never have been completed.
A portion of the expense of printing this book has been borne by the English Club of Yale University from funds placed at its disposal by the generosity of Mr. George E. Dimock of Elizabeth, New Jersey, a graduate of Yale in the Class of 1874.
UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS,
January 3, 1916
L. H. H.
A. EDITIONS OF THE PLAY
Collations and Descriptions
Catiline was first acted in 1611, and published in the same year in quarto (Q1). There is no entry of it in the Stationers' Registers, but this lack is not unusual, for 'the Registers by no means include everything which appeared from the press. Those who held special privileges or monopolies for printing a certain book, or, maybe, a whole class of books, were not, apparently, under obligation to enter such books, and the royal printers were also superior to the rule so far as the works included in their patent were concerned.'1 However, the charter of the Company of Stationers was stringent enough to prevent the lawful printing of any work not entered on its books, unless exempt as above stated. Of course, numerous 'pirated' editions were issued by the secret presses; but the 1611 Quarto of Catiline can scarcely have been of this type, as a glance at its title-page will show: CATILINE | his CONSPIRACY | Written by | BEN: IONSON. LONDON, | Printed for Walter Burre. | 1611. | Walter Burre was a member in good standing of the Company, and had already issued editions of Jonson's Alchemist, Sejanus, and Volpone. This Quarto is a clearly printed volume, containing: title, one leaf (verso, heraldic device); dedication, one leaf; addresses to the reader, one leaf recto; commendatory verses, 2 one leaf verso, one leaf recto; names of the actors, one leaf verso; text B-03 in fours.
1 Cambridge Hist. Eng. Lit. 4. 433.
2 See Appendix, pp. 216 ff.
The addresses to the reader (also found in Q2) are decidedly Jonsonian in flavor. W. and G. introduced them into their editions. They read as follows:
'TO THE READER IN ORDINARIE.
"The Muses forbid, that I should restraine your medling, whom I see alreadie busie with the Title, and tricking ouer the leaues: It is your owne. I departed with my right, when I let it first abroad. And now, so secure an Interpreter I am of my chance, that neither praise, nor dispraise from you can affect mee. Though you commend the two first Actes, with the people, because they are the worst; and dislike the Oration of Cicero, in regard you read some pieces of it, at Schoole, and vnderstand them not yet; I shall finde the way to forgiue you. Be anything you will be, at your owne charge. Would I had deseru'd but halfe so well of it in translation, as that ought to deserue of you in iudgment, if you haue any. I know (whosoeuer you are) to haue that, and more. But all pretences are not iust claymes.
'The commendation of good things may fall within a many, their approbation but in a few; for the most commend out of affection, selfe tickling, an easiness, or imitation; but men iudge only out of knowledge. That is the trying faculty. And, to those works that will beare a Iudge, nothing is more dangerous then a foolish prayse. You will say I shall not haue yours, therefore; but rather the contrary, all vexation of Censure. If I were not aboue such molestations now, I had great cause to think vnworthily of my studies, or they had so of mee. But I leaue you to your exercise. Beginne.
'To the Reader extraordinary.
'You I would vnderstand to be the better Man, though Places in Court go otherwise; to you I submit my selfe, and worke. Farewell. BEN: IONSON.'