14 April 2004
[HARDY, Thomas (1840-1928)]. SHAKESPEARE, William. Tragedy of Hamlet. London: J.M. Dent, 1895.
16o (135 x 100 mm). Frontispiece. Original red cloth, top edge gilt; russet morocco folding case. Provenance: Thomas Hardy, English author (red Max Gate bookplate; inscription); Granville Barker (note pasted inside case: "This copy of Hamlet was given to us upon our first visit to Max Gate after T.H.'s death. G.B. 1928."
THOMAS HARDY'S COPY OF 'HAMLET', a volume of Dent's "Temple Shakespeare" edition. INSCRIBED BY HARDY on the half-title: "Thomas Hardy. (at Stratford-on-Avon.) 1896." A two-word pencil annotation on p.102 defining the word "shent" is possibly in Hardy's hand. While the literary life was unknown to Hardy, he made a methodical study of pictures in the National Gallery, and was very impressed with the acting of Samuel Phelps in Shakespeare.
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