New York: The Bennett Libraries, Inc., 1928. Item #03301
Shakespeare's Love Poems and Sonnets
One of Two Hundred Large-Paper Copies Specially Bound by Bennett of New York
SHAKESPEARE, William. Will Shakespeare. His Amatory Poems. The Sonnets. Venus and Adonis. The Rape of Lucrece. The Passionate Pilgrim. Elaborated with Frontispiece Portrait and Four Engravings from Classic Originals. New York: The Bennett Libraries, Inc., 1928.
One of 200 Large-Paper Copies printed on Holland Pannekoek Paper (out of a total edition of 1,000).
Royal octavo (9 3/8 x 6 1/2 inches; 239 x 165 mm.). [ii, limitation], 303, [1, blank] pp. Title page and half-titles printed in red and black. Engraved portrait frontispiece and four plates.
Publishers (bound by Bennett, NY) full mottled calf, covers ruled in blind. Spine with five raised bands ruled in blind with two maroon morocco gilt lettered labels, marbled endpapers, top edge gilt, others uncut. A fine copy, many of the pages uncut.
Shakespeare's Sonnets is the title of a collection of 154 sonnets first published in 1609 and accredited to William Shakespeare which cover themes such as the passage of time, love, beauty and mortality. The first 17 poems, traditionally called the procreation sonnets, are addressed to a young man urging him to marry and have children in order to immortalize his beauty by passing it to the next generation. Other sonnets express the speaker's love for a young man; brood upon loneliness, death, and the transience of life; seem to criticize the young man for preferring a rival poet; express ambiguous feelings for the speaker's mistress; and pun on the poet's name. The final two sonnets are allegorical treatments of Greek epigrams referring to the "little love-god" Cupid.
Venus and Adonis (1592-1593) is a poem by William Shakespeare with a plot based on passages from Ovid's Metamorphoses. It is a complex, kaleidoscopic work, using constantly shifting tone and perspective to present contrasting views of the nature of love.
The Rape of Lucrece (1594) is a narrative poem by William Shakespeare about the legendary Lucretia. In his previous narrative poem, Venus and Adonis (1593), Shakespeare had included a dedicatory letter to his patron, the Earl of Southampton, in which he promised to write a "graver work". Accordingly, The Rape of Lucrece has a serious tone throughout.
The Passionate Pilgrim (1599) is an anthology of 20 poems collected and published by William Jaggard that were attributed to "W. Shakespeare" on the title page, only five of which are considered authentically Shakespearean. These are two sonnets, later to be published in the 1609 collection of Shakespeare's Sonnets, and three poems extracted from the play Love's Labour's Lost. Internal and external evidence contradicts the title-page attribution to Shakespeare. Five were attributed to other poets during his lifetime, and two were published in other collections anonymously.