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The Complete Illustrated Shakespeare

4.49  ·  Rating Details ·  45,897 Ratings  ·  727 Reviews
The complete theatrical works of the immortal Bard, uniquely supplemented with annotations and critical analysis by a host of eminent scholars, including Samuel Coleridge and Samuel Johnson, plus a biography of Shakespeare himself. For the collection of the Shakespeare enthusiast, and the edification of the Shakespeare novice.
Unknown Binding
Published January 1st 1979 by Arno Press (first published 1623)
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Popular Answered Questions

Edward Richmond Yes, this is the whole thing. Hence "Complete Works."

Everything in it was written by Shakespeare. Nobody else, unless you believe the wild theories…more
Yes, this is the whole thing. Hence "Complete Works."

Everything in it was written by Shakespeare. Nobody else, unless you believe the wild theories that say it was all secretly the work of Sir Francis Bacon (I don't).(less)
Sam Hickey There are many, many editions of Shakespeare's complete works, and lots of them have line numbers, but some of them don't. If you absolutely need an…moreThere are many, many editions of Shakespeare's complete works, and lots of them have line numbers, but some of them don't. If you absolutely need an edition that has line numbers then may I suggest the Norton edition of Shakespeare's complete works? It is the whole shebang with line numbers, helpful explanatory essays, and extensive annotations and textual notes. The binding leaves a little to be desired though, so you are making a little bit of a trade off for the breadth of content, so if you want a lovely leather bound one then you might have to do a bit of research.(less)
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Community Reviews

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Bookdragon Sean
I plan to read many Shakespeare plays this summer. I won’t complete the full works, but finishing them all is one of my major reading goals. It might take me a few years to do it, but I shall get there eventually!

Here’s where I’m up to at the moment:

1 Two Gentlemen of Verona
2 Taming of the Shrew
3 Henry VI, part 1
4 Henry VI, part 3
5 Titus Andronicus
6 Henry VI, part 2
7 Richard III
8 The Comedy of Errors
9 Love's Labours Lost
10 A Midsummer Night's Dream
11 Romeo and Juliet
12 Richard II
13 Ki
...more
Vane J.
Feb 08, 2015 Vane J. rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition


It all ended so fast. I feel like it's just January, but look at the calendar - it's December! You surely remember earlier in the year when I said I had put a challenge for myself. This was the Shakespeare Challenge, in which I had to read all the works known by William Shakespeare. Guess what? I finally read them all!

It started in January. I was bored and I didn't know what to read. One day I went to the library and checked out a book that contained 4 of Shakespeare's best plays. I read it and
...more
Manny
Celebrity Death Match Special: The Complete Works of Shakespeare versus Deep Learning

Ubergeek Andrej Karpathy had the bright idea of training a recurrent neural network on the complete works of Shakespeare. It produces remarkably good output for an algorithm which not only knows nothing about Shakespeare, but can't even tell a noun from a verb! Here is the first of the two samples he gives:

PANDARUS:
Alas, I think he shall be come approached and the day
When little srain would be attain'd into bein
...more
Daniel Cowan
Oct 21, 2016 Daniel Cowan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Simply put, When you have The Complete Works of William Shakespeare you have one of the best works of literature ever written. I would definitely place it in the top 10 best works of literature of all time. I bought this book at special price from here:
https://www.amazon.com/Complete-Works...
Ted
Jan 27, 2014 Ted rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Have I read this book? Only part of it.

But is anyone going to argue about my rating?


See bottom of review for a list of the plays in order

What follows is little more than the GoodReads description of the edition pictured. But I feel I can do that, since I wrote the description.

This tome includes all 37 of Shakespeare's plays, as well as his poems and sonnets. It was produced "for college students in the hope that it will help them to understand, appreciate, and enjoy the works for themselves. It
...more
midnightfaerie
Apr 23, 2012 midnightfaerie is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
I understand now why I have such a hard time reading Shakespeare. It's not that it's hard to understand. There are enough translations and self help guides to get you through the plot of any of the plays. And once I started reading and translating, I started to get the hang of it, and had fewer words and phrases that I had to look up. No, it's not that. Simply put, it's a play, and not meant to be read. I know there are some who might disagree with me, however, that's my opinion. I revel in the ...more
Darwin8u
Mar 07, 2017 Darwin8u is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
description

1. Two Gentlemen of Verona (1589–1591) - Reviewed Jan 1, 2017
2 The Taming of the Shrew (1590–1591) - Reviewed Jan 5, 2017
3 Henry VI, Part 2 (1591) - Reviewed Feb 1, 2017
4 Henry VI, Part 3 (1591) - Reviewed Feb 3, 2017
5 Henry VI, Part 1 (1591–1592) - Reviewed Jan 21, 2017
6 Titus Andronicus (1591–1592) - Reviewed Feb 9, 2017
7 Richard III (1592–1593) - Reviewed March 4, 2017
8. The Comedy of Errors (1594) - Reviewed March 11, 2017
9. Love's Labour's Lost (1594–1595) - Reviewed March 27, 2017
10.
...more
Maddie
Nov 15, 2016 Maddie marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Free on kindle today
Sarah
Aug 07, 2013 Sarah rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
19/10 - I've just started a course on Shakespeare through FutureLearn and the first play that we are studying is The Merry Wives of Windsor, which is one I know absolutely nothing about. So far, I've read about three pages, or to the end of scene one and what I understand is that while I can barely understand the language, I can get the general gist of what's going on (or at least I think I can). There are many instances where God is Got, better is petter, brings is prings, very is fery, good is ...more
Sookie
Dec 21, 2016 Sookie is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017
Othello: 06/Nov/2016 -- 5*
King Lear: 08/Nov/2016 -- 5*
Romeo and Juliet: 06/Nov/2016 -- 3*
The Tempest: 21/Dec/2016 -- 3*
Richard II: 21/Jan/2017 -- 3*
Henry IV: 10/Jun/2017 -- 5*
Jean
Please note, this is a review of this particular edition of the "Complete Works of William Shakespeare" from 1923. For reviews of various individual plays by Shakespeare, please see my shelves. **

This edition was published by "The Literary Press, London" on fine paper, to traditional standards, with each section sewn into the spine rather than glued. The top edge of the volume is gilt-edged. It has a soft cover with a burgundy leatherette finish, and gold lettering, plus a gold embossed design o
...more
Crito
Sep 21, 2015 Crito rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If the question is "do you recommend Shakespeare?" the answer would be of course, in what universe would he not be recommended?
So I guess the one that would get any conversation whatsoever would be "would you recommend I read the complete works"? Well it certainly is a ride, a journey, there's quite a bit of stuff in here. One thing I'll say is I'm still not entirely convinced of literature's claim on Shakespeare because when I read these plays there's a yearning for performance, for interpretat
...more
Sammy
Oct 03, 2010 Sammy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favourites, theatre
What an exquisite edition of one of the greatest works in the Western canon. Armed with an authoritative editorial team, Professor Jonathan Bate has reworked all of Shakespeare's plays, as well as his poems. The footnotes are extensive and cover all meanings of words (including the more salacious ones that many school texts leave out), while also providing informative historical and contextual information.

This edition seeks to give us every word attributed to Shakespeare (although, as it points
...more
Kelly
Update: Seven plays into my current spree, I'm going to have to put this on hold due to a lack of time. I've now read 17 total- my most severe weakness is the histories (have only read Richard III and Henry IV). When I come back to this project, I think that I will be reading those in order.

1st: Macbeth (finished-review posted)
2nd: Two Gentlemen of Verona (finished-review posted)
3rd: King Lear (finished-review posted)
4th: Merchant of Venice (finished-review posted)
5th: Othello (finished-review p
...more
GoldGato

There's special providence in the fall of a sparrow. If it be now, 'tis not to come; if it be not to come, it will be now; if it be not now, yet it will come. The readiness is all.

If readiness be all, then this volume is a staple on any bookshelf. Ready to be opened for quick quote checks, ready to be heaved at home intruders (it's really heavy), it is useful in so many ways. It stays open on the window shelf, so the afternoon breeze can choose its special pages. Additionally, there are several
...more
Marius


10. LOVE's LABOUR'S LOST (p. 305 - 364)
11 October 2016 - 16 October 2016

9. THE MERCHANT OF VENICE (p. 413 - 471)
27 May 2016 - 29 May 2016

8. THE MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR (p. 102 - 154)
04 March 2016 - 08 March 2016

7. THE TAMING OF THE SHREW (p. 526 - 583)
20 February 2016 - 28 February 2016

6. MEASURE FOR MEASURE (p. 159 - 214)
21 September 2015 - 25 September 2015

5. AS YOU LIKE IT (p. 472 - 525)
6 July 2015 - 9 July 2015

... continued from The Complete Pelican Shakespeare
Justin
Sep 14, 2010 Justin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
There is no way you can consider yourself a lover of Shakespeare's works if you don't own a copy of the First Folio. Yes, it's a little tough to read at first because certain letters don't quite look the same now as they used to, however, as an actor performing in a Shakespearean play this is a must own. You can find so many clues in the first folio that are changed by modern editors... run (don't walk) to the nearest book store and buy this.
Jennifer Wright
Nov 18, 2015 Jennifer Wright rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Not enough dragons.
Robert Paglia
Aug 18, 2011 Robert Paglia is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
Love the 17th century spelling. As long as you don't need something with the original typography, this is great.
Melanti
Jun 10, 2017 Melanti marked it as maybe-someday  ·  review of another edition
A couple months back, I tackled Chaucer in the original and a couple of brief forays into an ebook edition with modernized spelling showed me that often the rhythm and rhymes were lost when you modernize the spelling, even if it's otherwise word-for-word identical.

That made me wonder what Shakespeare would be like with the original spelling, but the only Complete Works editions with original spelling that I could find were $150+, used. Way too expensive!

Then I happened across this edition at t
...more
Nicholas Whyte
J. Alfred
Jun 10, 2013 J. Alfred rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Young Frankie in Frank McCourt's Angela's Ashes says that "Shakespeare is like mashed potatoes; you can never have too much." It's a compliment both to the poet and the potato, and I agree wholeheartedly. To read the ol' Swan of Avon straight through has, I believe, made me legitimately smarter, and not just in a know-more-stuff-in-my-chosen-profession sense, but in a understand-the-world-around-me sense. Eliot says that Shakespeare and Dante "divided the world between them, and there is no thir ...more
Polly
Jan 20, 2010 Polly rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I have not finished this yet, although David gave it to me for Christmas about 15 years ago (clearly not the Kindle edition, but I can't seem to change that). Some of my favorites are Henry V, Hamlet and King Lear. I don't care so much for the comedies. I think everyone should read Shakespeare to know what good writing is, and to get an idea of the impact of human behavior for better and for worse. There are so many wonderful and relevant lines that I wish I could commit more to memory. During t ...more
Jeb
Jun 17, 2007 Jeb rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Favorites: Hamlet, The Taming of the Shrew, A Midsummer Night's Dream, King Lear. Second-favorite: Othello. Don't give as much of a damn about as I should: Romeo and Juliet, Macbeth, Julius Caesar. I tend to enjoy but the plots muddle in my head: Much Ado, As You Like It, Comedy of Errors, All's Well That Ends Well, Twelfth Night. Would like to see/read/study: Winter's Tale, Tempest. The histories: not interested.
Ryan Evans
Feb 16, 2014 Ryan Evans rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
People always complain that the language is hard to read but, while it is easier to watch than read his works, the effort is worth the reward. The poetry and craftmanship of his words are magical. So emotive. He somehow speaks straight to the soul. Who else would be remembered so fondly after so long a time?
Kaethe
Jul 08, 2014 Kaethe rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Of course I loved it. I have a functional hardcover from college, this one, and miscellaneous paperbacks from high school which I suppose I could get rid of. Will is my man. This is what having a crush on your seventh-grade English teacher leads to: Bardolatry. [thanks for that word, [author:Lauren Baratz-Logsted|27212]
Ben
May 17, 2012 Ben rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Well, what can I say? I decided to begin the year by reading the complete works of the Bard. I spent nearly every day for the past two months with the Immortal Bard, tangled in the deep richness of his verse, reading all of his 37 plays (I am not counting here “The Two Noble Kinsmen,” which has only recently and contentiously been added to the Shakespearean cannon) and the entire poetry (the sonnets and minor epics). Now that I am finished I feel a plethora of emotions. First and foremost, I fee ...more
Edward
Jun 06, 2017 Edward marked it as collections-unread  ·  review of another edition
Reviews:
- Two Gentlemen of Verona
- Taming of the Shrew
- Henry VI, part 1
- Henry VI, part 3
- Titus Andronicus
- Henry VI, part 2
- Richard III
- The Comedy of Errors
- Love's Labours Lost
- A Midsummer Night's Dream
- Romeo and Juliet
- Richard II
- King John
- The Merchant of Venice
- Henry IV, part 1
- The Merry Wives of Windsor
- Henry IV, part 2
- Much Ado About Nothing
- Henry V
- Julius Caesar
- As You Like It
- Hamlet, Prince of Denmark
- Twelfth Night
- Troilus and Cressida
- Measure for Measure
- Othello, M
...more
Nicole Pramik
How do you honestly review Shakespeare? Other than simply say the Bard was a genius in storytelling, character creation, and (of course) writing. But just saying that seems too simple even though it's the truth. It is a shame that people seem to get scared off from reading Shakespeare because of the language. For me, part of the appeal of his works is his language. It's like a chameleon that changes to the setting and mood; at times, it can be beautiful and effortless like poetry, and at other t ...more
Steven Taylor
Oct 16, 2009 Steven Taylor rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Seeing this when voting on the book list has inspired me to gush: Maybe I should put this under "currently reading" because I'll be reading and re-reading these my whole life. What can I say that hasn't been said already? The funniest comedies, the most passionate love stories, the most heart-wrenching tragedies. And of course, all of it in the most beautiful language ever written in English.

Tragically, so many start reading a play, get frustrated by the language and give up. I think that'
...more
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William Shakespeare (baptised 26 April 1564) was an English poet and playwright, widely regarded as the greatest writer in the English language and the world's pre-eminent dramatist. He is often called England's national poet and the "Bard of Avon" (or simply "The Bard"). His surviving works consist of 38 plays, 154 sonnets, two long narrative poems, and several other poems. His plays have been tr ...more
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“Who knows himself a braggart, let him fear this, for it will come to pass that every braggart shall be found an ass.” 68 likes
“Would the fountain of your mind were clear again,
that I might water an ass at it!”
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