Described in a note accompanying the volume as “one of the most beautiful”, this copy held at the Boston Public Library is “one of the only fourteen perfect copies”. The volume was cautiously cared for by Thomas Rodd (1796-1849). Two leaves (R1 and R6) were in the uncorrected state and Rodd not only preserved them, but he also added a corrected version of both of these leaves. Rodd notes that the binding in which the folio came to him was an old one but not an original and that it was “wrongly bound up” as well as “imperfect and all broken”. Therefore, he rebound it and then quickly sold this copy to Thomas Pennant Barton, an American diplomat and book collector of works by and about Shakespeare and English drama. The copy remained in the possession of Barton and, later, his wife, Cora Livingston. She was a famous belle of America and Edward Livingston’s daughter. He was a close friend of Andrew Jackson, seventh president of the United States, and Cora Livingston became Jackson’s great-niece’s godmother. After her husband passed, she decided that it was important that his collection of rare books be kept together. Thus, she sold it to the Boston Public Library in 1873 together with Barton’s other Shakespearean works.
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