The Institute for the Quaternary Evolution in Shakespearean Thought
             MOTTO: Know you not that I must be about my mother's business

  •   Super A3 Volume
    Quaternary Institute & Quaternary Imprint
    1623 FOLIO

    Published by Quaternary Imprint for the
    Quaternary Institute and released June 2022

    Roger Peters Copyright © 2022

    All 924 Pages are also available for viewing at Quaternary Imprint
    Play Commentaries to William Shakespeare's 1623 Folio

    Play Commentaries to William Shakespeare's 1623 Folio

    Play Commentaries to William Shakespeare's 1623 Folio


    (Special Boutique Bookbound Edition)

    Short Introduction to

    The Commentaries present 924 Super A3 pages in a red and blue balloon-style format
    around a black and white facsimile of the original 1623 Edition.
    INTRODUCTION: A five-page Introduction explains how the philosophy deliberately embedded by Shakespeare in the 1609 edition of Shake-speares Sonnets is critical for appreciating the content of all thirty-six plays in the 1623 Folio, before the first eleven pages of the Commentary examine the 1623 Folio's Prefatory material with comments and advice from the Editors John Heminge and Henry Condell and poems and commendations by Shakespeare's contemporaries.
    FOURTEEN COMEDIES: The Commentary examines how the fourteen Comedies provide instances of Shakespeare's nature-based philosophy resolving otherwise intractable male-based personal, social, political and religious issues.
    TEN HISTORIES: The Commentary on the ten English Histories from King John to Henry VIII examines Shakespeare's devastating critique of the mayhem and murder consequent on giving Monarchs God-like delusions.
    TWELVE TRAGEDIES: The Commentary examines Shakespeare's dramatic critique of twelve instances from the Histories and Literature where male-based prerogatives are given murderous ascendency over nature and the female default.

    Back to Top
    Front Cover

    Sample all 924 Pages online
    Go to Link
    Introduction to

    The speech balloon commentaries in Play Commentaries to Shakespeare’s 1623 Folio around facsimile pages of the 1623 Folio of William Shakespeare’s thirty-six plays utilise the relationship between the nature-based philosophy Shakespeare articulates in his 1609 Shake-speares Sonnets (called Q) and the text of the 1623 edition (called F).
        The speech balloon commentaries respond directly to the actual wording, punctuation and arrangement of the 1623 text without preconceptions, other than applying Shakespeare’s Sonnet philosophy. Moreover, the digitised pages are available as teaching aids for a Quaternary level of learning beyond Tertiary worldwide.
        The 1623 editors John Heminge and Henry Condell scene-set their definitive undertaking by prefacing the Comedies, Histories and Tragedies with commendations from some of those who knew Shakespeare well – including their own incisive thoughts. A word-count throughout their eulogies and reminiscences records Shakespeare’s groundedness in nature, the female, increase, and other basic terms from the 1609 Sonnets.
        There are eleven uses of the word nature with a further eight referring to nature as her, she or herself – nineteen in all. Add the references to goddess, mother and Venus and contrast them with the only mention of God in the unauthorial 1640 edition as an ejaculation in Leonard Digges’ poem. The muses are mentioned five times and many of the words Shakespeare uses to ground his nature-based philosophy get a mention such as increase, got, beget, store, posterity, born and father, and issue appears twice.
         In Heminge and Condell’s Preface ‘To the great Variety of Readers’, the second paragraph elaborates on statements made twice elsewhere in the prefatory pages that the 1623 Folio is ‘Published according to the True Original Copies’. They state Shakespeare (‘you’) was ‘abused with diverse stolen, and surreptitious copies, maimed, and deformed by the frauds and stealthes of injurious imposters’, and that the plays ‘are now offered to your view cured, and perfect of their limbs; and all the rest, absolute in their numbers, as he conceived them’.
        Then follows a sentence summarising Shakespeare’s respect for nature and his ability to capture unprejudiced in his writings every aspect of nature – including human nature. Heminge and Condell record that Shakespeare ‘Who, as he was a happy imitator of Nature, was a most gentle expresser of it’. This one sentence affirms his nature-based intentions and expression and, along with the preceding condemnation of imposters, stands as a canny indictment of the next 400 years of bad faith editing of Shakespeare’s plays and poems.
        Very bluntly, they say that those who have any form of difficulty with Shakespeare’s work should read writers more sympathetic to their beliefs. In Shakespeare’s day such writers might be Donne, Dante, Ovid, Chaucer, Jonson, Marlowe, Sidney, and many others who Heminge and Condell call his ‘Friends’ - and just about every writer since.
        The history of interference in the 1623 Folio of plays ranks as the greatest offence ever perpetrated against a major literary figure. As the philosophic contents of the Sonnets are available from the 1609 Edition without wilful alteration and the same holds for the 1623 Folio, then it is reasonable to presume Shakespeare prepares the Sonnets for publication in 1609 and his colleagues manage by 1623 to compile a faithful presentation of his plays.
        The male-based prejudices that drive those who would wish Bacon, De Vere, or Marlowe had written the plays – or Fletcher and Middleton parts of plays – also motivates the majority of the textual reworking. The technocratic analysis used to justify changing the meanings of words, altering parts spoken by characters or adding and removing portions of text gets its crass respectability from the support it provides for a Shakespeare converted to England’s poet of State and Throne.
        The dissemblers might have heeded Samuel Johnson, who admits of his own uninspired guesswork, ‘I was forced to censure those whom I admired, and could not but reflect, while I was dispossessing their emendations, how soon the same fate might happen to my own’.
        Shakespeare’s plays and poems are at one with the natural world. However, more than any other thinker/artist, Shakespeare not only extracts his meaning from nature, he explains precisely how he does so. It is because of his unique level of reflexivity that he incorporates the most abstract machinations of humankind into his dramatic wordplay and poetic evocations.
        Unless this is the Shakespeare loved and understood by his commentators, then his works will appear disordered, problematic, harsh and addled with errors. Unfortunately, over the last 400 years, the majority of his admirers have been his worst advocates.
        Shakespeare writes and arranges the 154 sonnets in the 1609 Sonnets to be answerable only to the givens of nature and the sexual dynamic of female and male and their logical implications for the workings of the mind. It is the generic text where Shakespeare articulates his nature-based and hence female prioritising philosophy. Consequently, there is not one place name in the 154 sonnets and the 1609 edition’s philosophic purpose also transcends personal names with the generic names: sovereign mistress, Mistress, Master Mistress and Poet.
        The reading of Q as a generic resource has its counterfoil in the Folio of 1623, whose thirty-six plays embrace a continent of named locations across greater Europe. Using the nature-based philosophy of the Sonnets, the speech balloon commentaries investigate the content and the arrangement of all thirty-six plays in the Folio.
        With the arrangement of the 1623 Folio into three genres of fourteen Comedies, ten Histories and twelve Tragedies - in that order – the Comedies show how to achieve resolution using Shakespeare’s nature-based philosophy with eleven savvy and cunning females and three gender-balanced males controlling the action, sometimes as proto-playwrights. Then, the twenty-two Histories and Tragedies case-study the mayhem and murder inevitably consequent on unbridled male-based/mind-based religious beliefs.
        If these patent facts and the recourse to the original editions is not adhered to, there is no chance of understanding their common sense content and natural prescription for contentedness. For instance, only by adhering to the natural logic of Shakespeare’s philosophy can the relation between sexual types as female and male and gender dispositions as feminine and masculine of both individual characters as persons and as personae in the minds of any one character be appreciated and understood.
        In Play Commentaries to Shakespeare’s 1623 Folio, throughout the writing of the 800,000 words around the 896 pages of the facsimile of the 1623 Folio, only a diligent attention to the portion of text to be commented on could either immediately or eventually reveal its depth and range of meaning - at the level of philosophic and literary insight that makes Shakespeare’s works unmatched world-wide.
        There were many cases where fresh insights occurred as in realising the import of Portia’s song in The Merchant of Venice, appreciating the role of Touchstone as a natural philosopher in As You Like It and the role of Pistoll as a Swaggerer in Henry IV Part 2, Henry V and The Merry Wives of Windsor, plus the function of the Induction scene in The Taming of the Shrew, and other moments of epiphany evident in the commentaries around each page of text.

    General specifications: The 924-page Hardback is Super A3.
      Dimensions: L 490mm: W 338mm; D 70mm.

      The Volume is stitchbound with ISBN: 978-0-473-62737-9.


    Back to Top
    Imprint Introduction   +   Imprint Site map   +   William Shakespeare's Sonnet Philosophy Slipcase Set
    William Shakespeare's Sonnet Philosophy Volume 1   +   William Shakespeare's Sonnet Philosophy Volume 2
    William Shakespeare's Sonnet Philosophy Volume 3   +   William Shakespeare's Sonnet Philosophy Volume 4
    Shakespeare's Global Philosophy    +   Shakespeare & Mature Love   +   Shakespeare's Philosophy Illustrated
    Quaternary Essays   +   Play Commentaries to William Shakespeare's 1623 Folio   +   Contact

    The Quaternary Institute

    Roger Peters Copyright © 2022