What are the best physical editions I can get of Shakespeare's plays? Complete editions or individual books? I'm interested in getting one with the original text or as close as possible, without excessive extra commentary or comparative text in modern English.
I've preordered the C011ectd W3rkz.
they're super luxury/premium items. you're reading it right.
they're probably the best physical books you can buy with money. whether or not that's "worth it" to you is another matter.
Oxford editions are what you are looking for.
If you're looking for seriously academic editions, go for Arden, though some people get turned off by the amount of notes, but I personally prefer them over other editions.
As for Complete Works vs Individual Editions, CW tend to be more general with the annotations and only point out difficult passages and words. Agains, Arden or Oxford are bretty good, as well as Norton. I prefer individual works because they are more thorough, but it's also more expensive in the long run.
if you want individual paperbacks without too much notes you should probably skip the arden and norton (which are excellent in their own right), and perhaps look into something like the cambridge or oxford shakespeares. notes are still on the heavy side since most paperbacks tend to be targeted for students.
for a budget option that actually might fit better since there's less "excess" material, you could consider the folger shakespeare paperbacks
the most quality/enduring/expensive manufacturing and materials are used for them. they come in two books - one is just the play, with no notes or commentary or other distractions from the text, and a much heftier second volume that contains decent quality academia commentary and notes and supplementary material
oh then you're fine. every respectable editions will be "original" text, the modern text on the sparks note is just a paraphrase. i thought you meant you wanted something like
To be, or not to be, that is the Question:
Whether 'tis Nobler in the minde to suffer
The Slings and Arrowes of outragious Fortune,
Or to take Armes against a Sea of troubles,
And by opposing end them: to dye, to sleepe
No more; and by a sleepe, to say we end
The Heart-ake, and the thousand Naturall shockes
That Flesh is heyre too? 'Tis a consummation
Deuoutly to be wish'd. To dye to sleepe,
To sleepe, perchance to Dreame; I, there's the rub,
For in that sleepe of death, what dreames may come,
When we haue shufflel'd off this mortall coile,
Must giue vs pawse.
Thanks, it wasn't the spelling that I was very concerned about, but since I'll have to order them online I was worried something like that paraphrasing would arrive, or double-text edition.
I second this, I have the Oxford complete works and enjoy it. I'm actually reading Macbeth right now.
Some caveats are that they modernize and standardize spelling and that it is humongous. I also heard the earlier version is much better than the most recent (or maybe the other way around, do your research). They seem to be meticulous about getting the original version and have some short introductory material that may be helpful.
What do you mean by the original text? As in same spelling or not being edited by a early or modern editor?
Also watching the plays is fun. I like the BBC series, I had my brother rip it from the bay of pirates. They don't mess with the text like other renditions and subtitle it too. They have around thirty of them.
By the way the Oxford contains the sonnets too.
>This portrait always makes me laugh because it's so evident that it was painted by Jonathan Richardson, and later claimed as being produced during Shakespeare's life. How quickly rumours proliferate among the English!
Because the images of Shakespeare are either doubtful in provenance or lacking expression, no one image seems to reconcile well with readers' imaginations. The relatively dusky features have caused repeated comment. George Steevens said that the picture gave Shakespeare "the complexion of a Jew, or rather that of a chimney sweeper in the jaundice".
According to Ben Macintyre, "Some Victorians recoiled at the idea that the Chandos portrait represented Shakespeare. One critic, J. Hain Friswell, insisted 'one cannot readily imagine our essentially English Shakespeare to have been a dark, heavy man, with a foreign expression'."
Friswell agreed with Steevens that the portrait had "a decidedly Jewish physiognomy" adding that it displayed "a somewhat lubricious mouth, red-edged eyes" and "wanton lips, with a coarse expression."
According to Ernest Jones, the portrait convinced Sigmund Freud that Shakespeare was French; "He insisted that his countenance could not be that of an Anglo-Saxon but must be French, and he suggested that the name was a corruption of Jacques Pierre."
The Iraqi writer Safa Khulusi argued that its "un-English" look and "Islamic beard" was evidence for his theory that Shakespeare was an Arab.