This copy has been in Durham for more than three centuries, but, in December 1998, it was stolen from an exhibition case in Bishop Cosin’s Library together with other important volumes such as a fourteenth century manuscript translation of the New Testament, two works by Aelfric, and a fifteenth century manuscript of a poem by Chaucer. In July 2008, Raymond Scott brought the copy to the Folger Shakespeare Library for authentication and valuation. It was confirmed to be a First Folio and identified as the stolen Durham copy. When Scott returned to the United Kingdom, he was arrested and, in July 2010, was charged with handling stolen property and transporting it out of the country. He was however acquitted of theft. He stayed in jail for eight years. The volume was returned to Durham in July 2010 with covers ripped off and title-leaf and final leaf removed. Before all this, the copy was owned by a churchman, John Cosin, who purchased a copy in London in the late 1620s or early 1630s. In 1644, he fled to France with other supporters of the royalists during the revolution. While he was in exile, his First Folio became part of the Peterhouse Library. He was able to recover his book when he came back after the monarchy was restored in 1660. As Bishop of Durham, he built a public episcopal library to which he bequeathed his Folio. In 1935, The Cosin Library was vested in Durham Colleges and, in 1963, in the University.
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