and Adonis and The
Rape of Lucrece,
the plague. Both were written to be printed, perhaps reflecting
of the 3rd
of his name
on the title-page of The Passionate Pilgrim (in which
only a few of the poems are his) indicates that by 1599 he was
famous for his poetry.
It was once thought that the edition of The Sonnets which
appeared in 1609 was unauthorised. More recently, it has been suggested
that the collection was printed according to Shakespeare’s
- Venus and Adonis, created in about 1592-1593. First printed in quarto in 1593. Venus and Adonis was dedicated to Henry Wriothesley, 3rd Earl of Southampton. The poem was regularly reprinted. In all, it appeared in 17 quarto editions before 1641.
William Shakespeare, Venus
- The Rape of Lucrece, created in about 1593-1594. First
printed in quarto in 1594. The title-page calls the poem Lucrece,
although the longer title appears on the half-title. The Rape
of Lucrece was also dedicated to the 3rd Earl of Southampton.
The poem was successful, but never as popular as Venus and
Adonis. It appeared in a total of eight quarto editions before
- The Passionate Pilgrim. First printed in octavo in
1599. This first edition survives only in a two-sheet fragment.
The second edition was also printed in 1599 and survives complete.
A third edition of The Passionate Pilgrim appeared in
1612. Of the 20 poems in the volume, only five are by Shakespeare.
They include early versions of two of his sonnets, as well as
verses from Love’s Labour’s Lost.
- The Phoenix and Turtle, perhaps created in about 1601.
First printed in Robert Chester’s Loves Martyr,
which appeared in quarto in 1601. This work was reissued with
a new title-page in 1611. The poem, which begins ‘Let the
bird of loudest lay’, acquired its title only in 1807.
The dedication ‘to
- A Lover’s Complaint, created in about 1603-1604. First printed in quarto alongside Shakespeare’s sonnets in 1609. A Lover’s Complaint was also included in the edition of The Sonnets of 1640.
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