14 April 2004
DAY, John (ca 1574-ca 1640). Law-Trickes or, Who Would Have Tought It. As it hath bene divers times Acted by the Children of the Revels. London: Printed [by Edward Allde] for Richard More, 1608.
4o (179 x 114 mm). (Title soiled and mounted, small stain on F3 affecting catchword, lower corner of I2 repaired affecting last three lines of text on verso, final leaf with a few small internal holes backed on verso.) Modern green morocco, gilt-lettered on front cover and spine, edges gilt. Provenance: some contemporary marginalia, mostly on blank verso of final leaf; Frederick Locker-Lampson (bookplate); John Verlhaw (bookplate); Marsden J. Perry (bookplate).
FIRST EDITION. From 1598 to 1603, John Day was employed by the Lord Admiral's Men as one of Philip Henslowe's regular playwrights, working in collaboration with Thomas Dekker. In 1599 he killed the playwright Henry Porter in a quarrel. From 1604 to 1608 he left Henslowe to work alone, during which time he wrote this work, as well as The Isle of Gulls and Humour Out of Breath. In his Conversations with Drummond, Ben Jonson mentions that Day, along with Dekker and others, "were all rogues." Law-Trickes includes several direct references to Shakespeare. Works by Day are very scarce on the market. Greg 267; Pforzheimer 270; STC 6416.
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