This copy, rediscovered in 2014, “had lain undisturbed in the library at St-Omer in the north of France for 200 years” (The Guardian). It is missing 28 pages, amongst which, the 12 first ones containing the title page and the paratextual materials. This copy most likely comes from the English Jesuit college of Saint-Omer’s collection, although no inscription has been detected to confirm this assumption yet. Two other mentions of ownership can be found in this copy. The first one reads “Nevill” and has been added in black ink next to the title of The Tempest (A1r). This pseudonym could belong to Basil Thomas Scarisbrick, later Eccleston, who was educated in Saint-Omer around 1727 and donated a series of works to his former school in 1736. The second mark of ownership are initials, “PS”, printed approximately every 100 pages using a punch. The copy was already mentioned in the old manuscript catalogue of the Bibliothèque d’agglomération de Saint-Omer (ms. 842-2). Jean Charles Joseph Aubin (1747-1829), former Benedictine of the congregation of St Maur and librarian of the town of Saint-Omer, described the Folio and added contextual information about Shakespeare. He stated that Shakespeare should be “regarded as the inventor of the dramatic art in England”, and that “without any knowledge of the dramatic works of antiquity, he drew from his genius and from nature the knowledge and finesse of his art”. He concludes by saying that “there are, however, many flaws in his plays, and those who value his productions the most have admitted them”.
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