Home  »  Volume XVIII: American LATER NATIONAL LITERATURE: PART III  »  § 39. Gulian Crommelin Verplanck

The Cambridge History of English and American Literature in 18 Volumes (1907–21).
VOLUME XVIII. Later National Literature, Part III.

XXV. Scholars

§ 39. Gulian Crommelin Verplanck

Gulian Crommelin Verplanck (1786–1870) issued under his own name an edition published in New York in 1847. He based his text upon Collier’s, departing from it in several places by reason of his preference for the Folio; he believed that the Quartos represent Shakespeare’s early or unrevised work, while the Folios contain his work matured and revised. This in turn is linked with Verplanck’s theory of the growth of Shakespeare’s genius—a theory which Verplanck took as the basis of almost his entire conception of Shakespearian editorship. It is according to this theory that he attempts to fix the chronology of the plays, and prints them in supposed chronological sequence within their generic division into Comedies, Histories, and Tragedies. With Verplanck the subjective and æsthetic criticism of the Romantic School avowedly enters American Shakespearian scholarship, coinciding rather closely with transcendentalism in general, which had no Shakespearian scholar.