Edmond Malone

Edmond Malone

Discussion
Ask a question about 'Edmond Malone'
Start a new discussion about 'Edmond Malone'
Answer questions from other users
Full Discussion Forum
 
Encyclopedia
Edmond Malone was an Irish Shakespearean scholar and editor of the works of William Shakespeare
William Shakespeare
William Shakespeare 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"...

.

Assured of an income after the death of his father in 1774, Malone was able to give up his law practice for at first political and then more congenial literary pursuits. He went to London, where he frequented literary and artistic circles. He regularly visited Samuel Johnson
Samuel Johnson
Samuel Johnson , often referred to as Dr. Johnson, was an English author who made lasting contributions to English literature as a poet, essayist, moralist, literary critic, biographer, editor and lexicographer...

 and was of great assistance to James Boswell
James Boswell
James Boswell, 9th Laird of Auchinleck was a lawyer, diarist, and author born in Edinburgh, Scotland; he is best known for the biography he wrote of one of his contemporaries, the English literary figure Samuel Johnson....

 in revising and proofreading his Life, four of the later editions of which he annotated. He was friendly with Sir Joshua Reynolds
Joshua Reynolds
Sir Joshua Reynolds RA FRS FRSA was an influential 18th-century English painter, specialising in portraits and promoting the "Grand Style" in painting which depended on idealization of the imperfect. He was one of the founders and first President of the Royal Academy...

, and sat for a portrait now in the National Portrait Gallery.

He was one of Reynolds' executors, and published a posthumous collection of his works (1798) with a memoir. Horace Walpole, Edmund Burke
Edmund Burke
Edmund Burke PC was an Irish statesman, author, orator, political theorist and philosopher who, after moving to England, served for many years in the House of Commons of Great Britain as a member of the Whig party....

, George Canning
George Canning
George Canning PC, FRS was a British statesman and politician who served as Foreign Secretary and briefly Prime Minister.-Early life: 1770–1793:...

, Oliver Goldsmith
Oliver Goldsmith
Oliver Goldsmith was an Irish writer, poet and physician known for his novel The Vicar of Wakefield , his pastoral poem The Deserted Village , and his plays The Good-Natur'd Man and She Stoops to Conquer...

, Lord Charlemont
James Caulfeild, 1st Earl of Charlemont
James Caulfeild, 1st Earl of Charlemont KP PC was an Irish statesman.The son of the 3rd Viscount Charlemont, he was born in Dublin, and succeeded his father as 4th Viscount in 1734...

, and, at first, George Steevens
George Steevens
George Steevens was an English Shakespearean commentator.He was born at Poplar, the son of a captain and later director of the East India Company. He was educated at Eton College and at King's College, Cambridge, where he remained from 1753 to 1756...

, were among Malone's friends. Encouraged by Charlemont and Steevens, he devoted himself to the study of Shakespearean chronology, and the results of his "An Attempt to Ascertain the Order in Which the Plays Attributed to Shakspeare Were Written" (1778), which finally made it conceivable to try to patch together a biography of Shakespeare through the plays themselves, are still largely accepted. This was followed in 1780 by two supplementary volumes to Steevens's version of Dr Johnson's Shakespeare, partly consisting of observations on the history of the Elizabethan
Elizabethan era
The Elizabethan era was the epoch in English history of Queen Elizabeth I's reign . Historians often depict it as the golden age in English history...

 stage, and of the text of doubtful plays; and this again, in 1783, by an appendix volume. His refusal to alter some of his notes to Isaac Reed
Isaac Reed
Isaac Reed was an English Shakespearean editor.-Life:The son of a baker, he was born in London. He was articled to a solicitor, and eventually set up as a conveyancer at Staple Inn, where he had a large practice.-Works:...

's edition of 1785, which disagreed with Steevens's, resulted in a quarrel with the latter.

Birth and early life


Edmond Malone was born 4 October 1741 in Dublin to Edmond Malone Sr.—MP
Member of Parliament
A Member of Parliament is a representative of the voters to a :parliament. In many countries with bicameral parliaments, the term applies specifically to members of the lower house, as upper houses often have a different title, such as senate, and thus also have different titles for its members,...

 of the Irish House of Commons
Irish House of Commons
The Irish House of Commons was the lower house of the Parliament of Ireland, that existed from 1297 until 1800. The upper house was the House of Lords...

 and judge
Judge
A judge is a person who presides over court proceedings, either alone or as part of a panel of judges. The powers, functions, method of appointment, discipline, and training of judges vary widely across different jurisdictions. The judge is supposed to conduct the trial impartially and in an open...

 of the Court of Common Pleas
Court of Common Pleas (Ireland)
The Court of Common Pleas was one of the senior courts of common law in Ireland. It was a mirror image of the equivalent court in England...

 in Ireland—and Catherine Collier, the niece of Robert Knight, 1st Earl of Catherlough
Robert Knight, 1st Earl of Catherlough
Robert Knight, 1st Earl of Catherlough, KB, , was a Member of Parliament for Great Grimsby , Castle Rising, Norfolk and Milborne Port, Somerset . He...

. He had two sisters, Henrietta and Catherine, and an older brother, Richard (later Lord Sunderlin). Edmond Malone Sr. was a successful lawyer and politician, educated at Oxford University and the Inner Temple
Inner Temple
The Honourable Society of the Inner Temple, commonly known as Inner Temple, is one of the four Inns of Court in London. To be called to the Bar and practise as a barrister in England and Wales, an individual must belong to one of these Inns...

 in London
London
London is the capital city of :England and the :United Kingdom, the largest metropolitan area in the United Kingdom, and the largest urban zone in the European Union by most measures. Located on the River Thames, London has been a major settlement for two millennia, its history going back to its...

, and called to the Bar in England in 1730, where he had a legal practice. But in 1740, a year before Edmond Jr. was born, his practice in England
England
England is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Scotland to the north and Wales to the west; the Irish Sea is to the north west, the Celtic Sea to the south west, with the North Sea to the east and the English Channel to the south separating it from continental...

 failed and he returned to Ireland
Ireland
Ireland is an island to the northwest of continental Europe. It is the third-largest island in Europe and the twentieth-largest island on Earth...

. He took up residence with his wife on the family's country estate, Shinglas, in County Westmeath
County Westmeath
-Economy:Westmeath has a strong agricultural economy. Initially, development occurred around the major market centres of Mullingar, Moate, and Kinnegad. Athlone developed due to its military significance, and its strategic location on the main Dublin–Galway route across the River Shannon. Mullingar...

, and began a more successful legal practice there.
According to Peter Martin
Peter Martin (professor)
Peter W. Martin is a law professor since 1972, and Dean from 1980 to 1988, at Cornell Law School. In 1992 he co-founded the Legal Information Institute with Tom Bruce.-External links:*...

, Malone's main biographer in the 20th century: “Virtually nothing is known of his childhood and adolescence except that in 1747 he was sent to Dr. Ford's preparatory school in Molesworth Street, Dublin, where his brother Richard had already been enrolled for two years.” The next record of his education is 10 years later, in 1757, when he—not yet 16 years old—entered Trinity College, Dublin
Trinity College, Dublin
Trinity College, Dublin , formally known as the College of the Holy and Undivided Trinity of Queen Elizabeth near Dublin, was founded in 1592 by letters patent from Queen Elizabeth I as the "mother of a university", Extracts from Letters Patent of Elizabeth I, 1592: "...we...found and...

, where his brother went to study two years earlier and where his father had received an honorary LL.D. the year before. Malone excelled at his studies, “an exemplary student, naturally diligent, consistently at the top of his class”, and was awarded with books stamped with the College Arms. In the very first examination, of four in the academic year, he shared top honors with James Drought and John Kearney who later became Fellow
Fellow
A fellow in the broadest sense is someone who is an equal or a comrade. The term fellow is also used to describe a person, particularly by those in the upper social classes. It is most often used in an academic context: a fellow is often part of an elite group of learned people who are awarded...

s of the College.
As an undergraduate he wrote some poetry and literary history. Of the latter, a noteworthy example is a prose translation of Oedipus Rex by Sophocles
Sophocles
Sophocles is one of three ancient Greek tragedians whose plays have survived. His first plays were written later than those of Aeschylus, and earlier than or contemporary with those of Euripides...

 with annotations and explanatory notes that Martin describes as “surprisingly erudite”. The translation is accompanied by a twenty page “… Essay on the Origin and Progress of Tragedy & on the Office & Advantages of the Antient Chorus” where he provides a brief comparison of Sophocles and Euripides
Euripides
Euripides was one of the three great tragedians of classical Athens, the other two being Aeschylus and Sophocles. Some ancient scholars attributed ninety-five plays to him but according to the Suda it was ninety-two at most...

 and argues in favor of the restoration of the Chorus
Greek chorus
A Greek chorus is a homogenous, non-individualised group of performers in the plays of classical Greece, who comment with a collective voice on the dramatic action....

 in modern drama.


His studies were interrupted when, in the summer of 1759, he and his father accompanied his mother to Highgate
Highgate
Highgate is an area of North London on the north-eastern corner of Hampstead Heath.Highgate is one of the most expensive London suburbs in which to live. It has an active conservation body, the Highgate Society, to protect its character....

 in England. Catherine's health had been deteriorating for some time and she now had increasing difficulty walking. After a short stay in Highgate she moved to the Roman Baths at Bath in Somerset
Somerset
The ceremonial and non-metropolitan county of Somerset in South West England borders Bristol and Gloucestershire to the north, Wiltshire to the east, Dorset to the south-east, and Devon to the south-west. It is partly bounded to the north and west by the Bristol Channel and the estuary of the...

, where the waters where supposed to have health-giving properties. Malone and his father returned to Ireland in October, too late to resume the winter term, so he elected to stay at Shinglas until the new year and study on his own. Not wishing to leave his father solitary, he nearly did not return to Trinity, but eventually resumed his studies in January 1760. The expenses for Catherine's stay at Bath put a strain on the family finances, but it was alleviated somewhat when, after a special examination on 2 June, he won a scholarship at Trinity and became a Scholar of the House.

Malone's final examination at Trinity was in the Michaelmas
Michaelmas
Michaelmas, the feast of Saint Michael the Archangel is a day in the Western Christian calendar which occurs on 29 September...

 term in 1761, and he received his BA
Bachelor of Arts
A Bachelor of Arts , from the Latin artium baccalaureus, is a bachelor's degree awarded for an undergraduate course or program in either the liberal arts, the sciences, or both...

 degree at the following Commencement
Graduation
Graduation is the action of receiving or conferring an academic degree or the ceremony that is sometimes associated, where students become Graduates. Before the graduation, candidates are referred to as Graduands. The date of graduation is often called degree day. The graduation itself is also...

 on 23 February 1762. As only one of three, he achieved the top mark . The decision to study law was an obvious choice: his father, uncle, and grandfather had all been Irish Barristers. He'd received—on payment of £3 6s 8d—admittance to the Inner Temple
Inner Temple
The Honourable Society of the Inner Temple, commonly known as Inner Temple, is one of the four Inns of Court in London. To be called to the Bar and practise as a barrister in England and Wales, an individual must belong to one of these Inns...

 in London in 1761, but did not begin his law studies until the new year in 1763. The interval was spent in Dublin reading, and he quickly applied to become a Reader of the Trinity College Library
Trinity College Library, Dublin
Trinity College Library Dublin, the centrally-administered library of Trinity College, Dublin, is the largest library in Ireland. As a "copyright library", it has legal deposit rights for material published in the Republic of Ireland; it is also the only Irish library to hold such rights for the...

. Martin speculates that he spent his time reading “possibly law although probably also literature”.

Law school and legal practice



Malone probably entered the Inner Temple in January 1763, but few records survive of his studies there; except that he was “invited to come to the bench table” in the commons—an honor Peter Martin describes as comparable to becoming a Warden in a guild
Guild
A guild is an association of craftsmen in a particular trade. The earliest types of guild were formed as confraternities of workers. They were organized in a manner something between a trade union, a cartel, and a secret society...

—on 10 May 1763. Outside schoolwork he published satirical articles about the government and on the abuse of the English language
English language
English is a West Germanic language that arose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and spread into what was to become south-east Scotland under the influence of the Anglian medieval kingdom of Northumbria...

, and made corrections to the text in his copy of a new edition of Jonathan Swift's
Jonathan Swift
Jonathan Swift was an Irish satirist, essayist, political pamphleteer , poet and cleric who became Dean of St...

 correspondence. He was admitted to the Inner Temple the same year as James Boswell
James Boswell
James Boswell, 9th Laird of Auchinleck was a lawyer, diarist, and author born in Edinburgh, Scotland; he is best known for the biography he wrote of one of his contemporaries, the English literary figure Samuel Johnson....

—a coincidence Martin thinks “literary historians cannot fail to wonder at”—but there is nothing to indicate that they ever crossed paths there.


More significantly, in 1764, Malone's close friend Thomas Southwell
Thomas Southwell, 2nd Viscount Southwell
Thomas Arthur Southwell, 2nd Viscount Southwell , styled The Honourable from 1766 until 1780, was an Irish peer and politician....

 and his father Edmund  introduced Malone to Samuel Johnson
Samuel Johnson
Samuel Johnson , often referred to as Dr. Johnson, was an English author who made lasting contributions to English literature as a poet, essayist, moralist, literary critic, biographer, editor and lexicographer...

, whose quarters on Inner Temple Lane were close to his own lodgings. Martin describes it as “…the most important meeting of Malone's life” and he became an "…ardent follower of Johnson's and, Boswell excepted, the most enthusiastic defender and celebrator of Johnson's writings and life." Malone's friendship with Johnson lasted until the latter's death in 1784. Although Malone failed to write down his conversations with Johnson, and none of his letters on the subject to John Chetwood have been found, Martin speculates that Shakespeare must have been among their topics of conversation, as Johnson was just then finishing up his great edition of Shakespeare that he had begun in 1756. They would have found other common interests in the law and Ireland, as Johnson would soon start work as private secretary to the English
England
England is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Scotland to the north and Wales to the west; the Irish Sea is to the north west, the Celtic Sea to the south west, with the North Sea to the east and the English Channel to the south separating it from continental...

 statesman
Statesman
A statesman is usually a politician or other notable public figure who has had a long and respected career in politics or government at the national and international level. As a term of respect, it is usually left to supporters or commentators to use the term...

 and Irish
Ireland
Ireland is an island to the northwest of continental Europe. It is the third-largest island in Europe and the twentieth-largest island on Earth...

 politician William Gerard Hamilton
William Gerard Hamilton
William Gerard Hamilton , English statesman and Irish politician, popularly known as "Single Speech Hamilton," was born in London, the son of a Scottish bencher of Lincoln's Inn....

. For Hamilton he compiled notes on the Corn Laws
Corn Laws
The Corn Laws were trade barriers designed to protect cereal producers in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland against competition from less expensive foreign imports between 1815 and 1846. The barriers were introduced by the Importation Act 1815 and repealed by the Importation Act 1846...

 that Malone in 1809 would publish, along with two of Hamilton's speeches in the Irish House of Commons
Irish House of Commons
The Irish House of Commons was the lower house of the Parliament of Ireland, that existed from 1297 until 1800. The upper house was the House of Lords...

 and some other miscellaneous works, under the title Parliamentary Logick.

The Southwells were also his companions when, in the autumn of 1766, he travelled in the south of France. There he visited Paris
Paris
Paris is the capital and largest city in France, situated on the river Seine, in northern France, at the heart of the Île-de-France region...

, Avignon
Avignon
Avignon is a French commune in southeastern France in the départment of the Vaucluse bordered by the left bank of the Rhône river. Of the 94,787 inhabitants of the city on 1 January 2010, 12 000 live in the ancient town centre surrounded by its medieval ramparts.Often referred to as the...

, and Marseille
Marseille
Marseille , known in antiquity as Massalia , is the second largest city in France, after Paris, with a population of 852,395 within its administrative limits on a land area of . The urban area of Marseille extends beyond the city limits with a population of over 1,420,000 on an area of...

; socializing and relaxing. Around this time he began having doubts about his choice of the law as a career. He was finished at the Inner Temple, but still required further study for the Irish Bar, and his motivation was flagging; particularly since it would mean leaving London and its "coffee-shops, theaters, newspapers, and politics." There was also some tension between him and his father over this, and over a judgeship his father had been promised by Lord Worthington. On hearing that the judgeship might not come to pass, Malone wrote to his father: "It shall be a lesson to me, never to believe in any great man's word, unless coupled with performance, & to aspire by every truest means at the greatest blessing of life, independence." Both issues resolved themselves shortly however, as his father succeeded to the bench as Judge of the Irish Court of Common Pleas
Court of Common Pleas (England)
The Court of Common Pleas, or Common Bench, was a common law court in the English legal system that covered "common pleas"; actions between subject and subject, which did not concern the king. Created in the late 12th to early 13th century after splitting from the Exchequer of Pleas, the Common...

 while Malone was still in Marseille. Arriving back in London, without the Southwells, in February he announced his fresh determination to proceed with law: "It is my firm resolution to apply as closely as possible till I go to Ireland, to the study of law, & the practice of the Court of Chancery…"
He was called to the Irish bar
Call to the bar
The Call to the Bar is a legal term of art in most common law jurisdictions where persons must be qualified to be allowed to argue in court on behalf of another party, and are then said to have been "called to the bar" or to have received a "call to the bar"...

 in 1767, and from 1769 practiced law on the Munster
Munster
Munster is one of the Provinces of Ireland situated in the south of Ireland. In Ancient Ireland, it was one of the fifths ruled by a "king of over-kings" . Following the Norman invasion of Ireland, the ancient kingdoms were shired into a number of counties for administrative and judicial purposes...

 circuit with "indifferent rewards". He was not having great success in this field, and he missed London with its "…great literary world of Johnson, coffee-houses, theatre, newspapers, and politics." In the early months of 1769 he also had an intense, but ultimately fruitless, romance with Susanna Spencer. When the relationship failed—for reasons that are unknown but which Martin speculates were related to their families' relative social status—Malone suffered a "nervous collapse" and "[lost] the will to read, to join in family activities, to practice law." He spent the better part of the summer in Spa
Spa, County Down
Spa is a small village in County Down, Northern Ireland, close to Ballynahinch. It is situated in the Down District Council area.Recently the village has grown significantly with the addition of many housing estates including Carnglave Manor and Marcevin Grove...

 with his brother, while his sisters, by letter, suggested remedies for his low mood and attempted to cheer him up. He returned some time after September, but his depression lingered on. He worked the Munster circuit and at some point after March in 1772 visited London, perhaps on the suggestion of his exasperated father. How long he remained or what his activities were is not known. He returned to Ireland and the Munster circuit, but, in private letters, complained of his boredom with this occupation.

Literature, theatre, and politics



To relieve his boredom, Malone diverted himself with literary studies. On a visit with Dr. Thomas Wilson, Senior Fellow of Trinity College, in 1774 he discovered several papers by Alexander Pope
Alexander Pope
Alexander Pope was an 18th-century English poet, best known for his satirical verse and for his translation of Homer. He is the third-most frequently quoted writer in The Oxford Dictionary of Quotations, after Shakespeare and Tennyson...

 that Henry St John
Henry St John, 1st Viscount Bolingbroke
Henry St John, 1st Viscount Bolingbroke was an English politician, government official and political philosopher. He was a leader of the Tories, and supported the Church of England politically despite his atheism. In 1715 he supported the Jacobite rebellion of 1715 which sought to overthrow the...

, the poet's literary executor
Literary executor
A literary executor is a person with decision-making power in respect of a literary estate. According to Wills, Administration and Taxation: a practical guide "A will may appoint different executors to deal with different parts of the estate...

, had collected. Among them was a manuscript
Manuscript
A manuscript or handwrite is written information that has been manually created by someone or some people, such as a hand-written letter, as opposed to being printed or reproduced some other way...

 in Pope's handwriting of his unfinished poem One Thousand Seven Hundred and Forty. Malone transcribed a facsimile
Facsimile
A facsimile is a copy or reproduction of an old book, manuscript, map, art print, or other item of historical value that is as true to the original source as possible. It differs from other forms of reproduction by attempting to replicate the source as accurately as possible in terms of scale,...

 of the manuscript, including "interlineations, corrections, alterations", but he failed to publish it and the original manuscript has since been lost.

On 4 April 1774, the Irish-born author Oliver Goldsmith
Oliver Goldsmith
Oliver Goldsmith was an Irish writer, poet and physician known for his novel The Vicar of Wakefield , his pastoral poem The Deserted Village , and his plays The Good-Natur'd Man and She Stoops to Conquer...

 died. Malone had known Goldsmith, either in Dublin or in London in the 1760s, and to honor his friend he participated in an amateur production of Goldsmith's She Stoops to Conquer
She Stoops to Conquer
She Stoops to Conquer is a comedy by the Irish author Oliver Goldsmith, son of an Anglo-Irish vicar, first performed in London in 1773. The play is a great favourite for study by English literature and theatre classes in Britain and the United States. It is one of the few plays from the 18th...

(1773). The event was held on 27 September 1774 and had strong patriotic overtones: it was staged at the country seat of Sir Hercules Langrishe
Hercules Langrishe
Sir Hercules Langrishe, 1st Baronet was an Irish politician.He was first elected to represent Knocktopher in the Irish House of Commons in May 1761, and sat until March 1800...

—a member of the Irish House of Commons
Irish House of Commons
The Irish House of Commons was the lower house of the Parliament of Ireland, that existed from 1297 until 1800. The upper house was the House of Lords...

—at Knocktopher
Knocktopher
Knocktopher is a village in County Kilkenny, Ireland. It is situated on the M9 between the villages of Stoneyford to the north, and Ballyhale to the south....

, and the Irish politicians and patriots Henry Grattan
Henry Grattan
Henry Grattan was an Irish politician and member of the Irish House of Commons and a campaigner for legislative freedom for the Irish Parliament in the late 18th century. He opposed the Act of Union 1800 that merged the Kingdoms of Ireland and Great Britain.-Early life:Grattan was born at...

 and Henry Flood
Henry Flood
Henry Flood , Irish statesman, son of Warden Flood, Lord Chief Justice of the King's Bench for Ireland, was educated at Trinity College, Dublin, and afterwards at Christ Church, Oxford, where he became proficient in the classics...

 both played parts. According to Martin's description, "Malone played two parts and wrote an excessively long epilogue of eighty-two lines, with several allusions that suggest his literary tastes. […] It celebrates Shakespeare, touches on Irish politics […], and concludes with a panegyric on the stage […]".


Irish politics seems to have been especially on his mind in in this period. In 1772 he contributed to Baratariana, a volume principally by Langrishe, but supplemented with letters by Flood and Grattan. The letters attack the current government in the style of Junius
Junius
Junius was the pseudonym of a writer who contributed a series of letters to the Public Advertiser, from 21 January 1769 to 21 January 1772. The signature had been already used, apparently by him, in a letter of 21 November 1768...

, who had published similar letters in England between 1769 and 1772, and Malone may have contributed "a weakly ironic piece in which he lamented the Irish consumption of millions of eggs every year when a little restraint could yield more substantial food in the form of chickens." His father died unexpectedly on 22 March 1774, leaving the four siblings with a modest income, and Malone free to pursue interests outside the drudgery of his legal practice. His ambition was politics, and that summer he proposed himself as candidate to a seat in Parliament for Trinity College. Objections were raised that his uncle, Anthony Malone, had joined the Townshend
George Townshend, 1st Marquess Townshend
Field Marshal George Townshend, 1st Marquess Townshend, PC , known as The Viscount Townshend from 1764 to 1787, was a British soldier who reached the rank of field marshal.-Early life:...

 government whose autocratic policies the university was firmly against. In his speech to the electors, Malone defended his uncle as a man of principle rather than party, who sought to do his best for his constituents rather than gain advantage for himself and his friends: "no man perhaps ever supported the administration so disinterestedly, or got so few favours from Government either for himself or his connexions." To the charge that the filial association was an impediment to his nomination he protested, later in his speech:
Corruption and self-interest he saw as the great problem of men in elected office, and in his speech he attacked them as opposing reform for fear of losing their advantage:
He won the nomination, but the election was not until May 1776, and, a few days prior, Anthony Malone died, leaving Malone an annual income of £1000 (roughly equivalent to £30,000 ) and the entire estate at Baronston to his brother, Richard. The legacy left him free to pursue a life of scholarship, and he promptly gave up the nomination in favour of contributing to a new edition of Goldsmith that was being prepared. He travelled to London to interview the people who had known Goldsmith and collect information and anecdotes about him. He spent six months there but apart from a letter from Susanna Spencer, in reply to a letter from Malone that is now lost, we have no information about his activities there. In February 1777, suffering from his first bout of rheumatism
Rheumatism
Rheumatism or rheumatic disorder is a non-specific term for medical problems affecting the joints and connective tissue. The study of, and therapeutic interventions in, such disorders is called rheumatology.-Terminology:...

, he returned to Ireland, and shortly afterward, Poems and Plays by Oliver Goldsmith was published. Malone had contributed an eight-page memoir
Memoir
A memoir , is a literary genre, forming a subclass of autobiography – although the terms 'memoir' and 'autobiography' are almost interchangeable. Memoir is autobiographical writing, but not all autobiographical writing follows the criteria for memoir set out below...

 of Goldsmith and annotations to the poems and plays. The memoir was based on "Authentic Anecdotes" by Richard Glover
Richard Glover (Poet)
Richard Glover was an English poet and politician.-Life:The son of Richard Glover, a Hamburg merchant, was born in London. He was educated at Cheam in Surrey....

—published in The Universal Magazine in May 1774, and Edmund Burke
Edmund Burke
Edmund Burke PC was an Irish statesman, author, orator, political theorist and philosopher who, after moving to England, served for many years in the House of Commons of Great Britain as a member of the Whig party....

 included it in The Annual Register for that year—as well as first-hand information from Dr. Wilson at Trinity.

London and Shakespeare



While in London to do research for his memoir of Goldsmith in 1776, Malone sought out George Steevens
George Steevens
George Steevens was an English Shakespearean commentator.He was born at Poplar, the son of a captain and later director of the East India Company. He was educated at Eton College and at King's College, Cambridge, where he remained from 1753 to 1756...

, who, by then the inheritor, from Samuel Johnson
Samuel Johnson
Samuel Johnson , often referred to as Dr. Johnson, was an English author who made lasting contributions to English literature as a poet, essayist, moralist, literary critic, biographer, editor and lexicographer...

, of the editor's mantle for the Jacob Tonson
Jacob Tonson
Jacob Tonson, sometimes referred to as Jacob Tonson the elder was an 18th-century English bookseller and publisher....

 edition of Shakespeare's
William Shakespeare
William Shakespeare 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"...

 collected works, was then busy preparing a second edition. Steevens invited Malone to help him complete it. To help him get started, Steevens lent Malone his copy of An Account of the English Dramatic Poets (1691) by Gerard Langbaine
Gerard Langbaine
Gerard Langbaine was an English dramatic biographer and critic, best known for his An Account of the English Dramatic Poets , the earliest work to give biographical and critical information on the playwrights of English Renaissance theatre...

, into which Steevens had transcribed notes by William Oldys
William Oldys
William Oldys was an English antiquarian and bibliographer.The illegitimate son of Dr William Oldys, chancellor of Lincoln, London was probably his place of birth. His father had held the office of advocate of the admiralty, but lost it in 1693 because he would not prosecute as traitors and...

 in addition to the notes he had added himself. When Malone returned to Ireland in early 1777, he set about transcribing all the annotations into his own copy. He finished the transcription on 30 March, and on 1 May he left Ireland for good.

Malone moved into a house in Sunninghill
Sunninghill, Berkshire
Sunninghill is a village in the civil parish of Sunninghill and Ascot in the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead in the English shire county of Berkshire-Location:...

, about 42 kilometres (26 mi) outside London, and started work. In the following months he sent a steady stream of notes and corrections to Steevens and in January 1778 The Plays of William Shakspeare was published in 10 volumes. Malone's main contribution appeared in the first volume as "An Attempt to Ascertain the Order in Which the Plays Attributed to Shakspeare Were Written". The "Attempt" was well received and garnered him more attention than the notes and corrections he had supplied Steevens with. With his first major contribution to Shakespeare studies published, he left Sunninghill to reside in London; first, briefly, in Marylebone Street and then in a house he rented at 55 Queen Anne Street East in what is now Foley Street in Marylebone
Marylebone
Marylebone is an affluent inner-city area of central London, located within the City of Westminster. It is sometimes written as St. Marylebone or Mary-le-bone....

.
In late 1778 he visited Ireland for a few months, and in February 1779, shortly after he returned, he began to have his portrait painted by Joshua Reynolds
Joshua Reynolds
Sir Joshua Reynolds RA FRS FRSA was an influential 18th-century English painter, specialising in portraits and promoting the "Grand Style" in painting which depended on idealization of the imperfect. He was one of the founders and first President of the Royal Academy...

. Reynolds was then much sought after as a portrait painter, and a "face and shoulders" by Reynolds cost 35 guineas
Guinea (British coin)
The guinea is a coin that was minted in the Kingdom of England and later in the Kingdom of Great Britain and the United Kingdom between 1663 and 1813...

 (£36.75). His uncle, Anothony Malone, had had his portrait painted by Reynolds in 1774, and Malone himself had good company: during the ten times between 23 February and 10 July that he sat for the portrait, Reynolds's appointment book shows that he sat on the same date as Edward Gibbon
Edward Gibbon
Edward Gibbon was an English historian and Member of Parliament...

, the British historian and MP; George Spencer, 4th Duke of Marlborough
George Spencer, 4th Duke of Marlborough
George Spencer, 4th Duke of Marlborough KG, PC, FRS , styled Marquess of Blandford until 1758, was a British courtier and politician...

; Hester Thrale
Hester Thrale
Hester Lynch Thrale was a British diarist, author, and patron of the arts. Her diaries and correspondence are an important source of information about Samuel Johnson and 18th-century life.-Biography:Thrale was born at Bodvel Hall, Caernarvonshire, Wales...

, author of Anecdotes of the Late Samuel Johnson
Anecdotes of the Late Samuel Johnson
The Anecdotes of the Late Samuel Johnson or the Anecdotes of the Late Samuel Johnson, LL.D. During the Last Twenty Years of His Life by Hester Thrale, also known as Hester Lynch Piozzi, was first published 26 March 1786. It was based on the various notes and anecdotes of Samuel Johnson that Thrale...

and a close friend of Johnson; and (28 April and 17 May) George III
George III of the United Kingdom
George III was King of Great Britain and King of Ireland from 25 October 1760 until the union of these two countries on 1 January 1801, after which he was King of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland until his death...

, then king of England and Ireland. Malone befriended Reynolds and they remained close friends until the latter's death in 1792, when Reynolds named Malone his executor along with Edmund Burke
Edmund Burke
Edmund Burke PC was an Irish statesman, author, orator, political theorist and philosopher who, after moving to England, served for many years in the House of Commons of Great Britain as a member of the Whig party....

 and Philip Metcalfe
Philip Metcalfe
Philip Metcalfe was a distiller in London, UK and member of Parliament from Horsham from 1784. He representedPlympton Erle, Devon from 1790 to 1796 and Malmesbury Wiltshire from 1796....

.

Malone's next scholarly project was an addendum to the Johnson–Steevens Shakespeare. Pleased with Malone's contributions to the edition, Steevens invited him to publish the apocryphal plays
Shakespeare Apocrypha
The Shakespeare Apocrypha is a group of plays that have sometimes been attributed to William Shakespeare, but whose attribution is questionable for various reasons...

 that had been included in the second edition of the Third Folio published by Philip Chetwinde
Philip Chetwinde
Philip Chetwinde was a seventeenth-century London bookseller and publisher, noted for his publication of the Third Folio of Shakespeare's plays.-A rough start:Chetwinde was originally a clothworker...

 in 1664. It was Malone's project—and with only grudging acceptance from Steevens he expanded the work to include the narrative poems and the Sonnets
Shakespeare's sonnets
Shakespeare's sonnets are 154 poems in sonnet form written by William Shakespeare, dealing with themes such as the passage of time, love, beauty and mortality. All but two of the poems were first published in a 1609 quarto entitled SHAKE-SPEARES SONNETS.: Never before imprinted. Sonnets 138 and 144...

—but he and Steevens worked closely together, and solicited notes from Isaac Reed
Isaac Reed
Isaac Reed was an English Shakespearean editor.-Life:The son of a baker, he was born in London. He was articled to a solicitor, and eventually set up as a conveyancer at Staple Inn, where he had a large practice.-Works:...

, William Blackstone
William Blackstone
Sir William Blackstone KC SL was an English jurist, judge and Tory politician of the eighteenth century. He is most noted for writing the Commentaries on the Laws of England. Born into a middle class family in London, Blackstone was educated at Charterhouse School before matriculating at Pembroke...

, and Thomas Percy. Until this point their relationship had been a cordial and productive one—Steevens having given Malone his first opportunity as an editor of Shakespeare, and in return having benefitted greatly from the younger scholar's work—but while working on the addendum they had a falling out. Steevens brought up Susanna Spencer and suggested that Malone's work on Shakespeare was a mere device to keep his mind distracted from the unhappy relationship. Malone took umbrage at this, his ambition being a life of professional scholarship, and replied that, to the contrary, he intended to produce a completely new edition of Shakespeare, "more scientifically and methodically edited than the Johnson–Steevens edition was ever likely to become." They settled their differences, but Steevens was now beginning to feel his position as the foremost editor of Shakespeare threatened. Malone was agressive and arrogant, and his constant stream of corrections grated on the older editor. Despite the strained relationship, in late April 1780, A Supplement to the Edition of Shakespeare, Published in 1778 by Samuel Johnson and George Steevens was published in two volumes. The work met with generally positive reviews, particularly from The Gentleman's Magazine
The Gentleman's Magazine
The Gentleman's Magazine was founded in London, England, by Edward Cave in January 1731. It ran uninterrupted for almost 200 years, until 1922. It was the first to use the term "magazine" for a periodical...

and Monthly Review
Monthly Review (London)
The Monthly Review was an English periodical founded by Ralph Griffiths, a Nonconformist bookseller. The first periodical in England to offer reviews, it featured the novelist and poet Oliver Goldsmith as an early contributor. William Kenrick, the "superlative scoundrel", was editor from 1759 to...

. But there was also criticism from the St. James's Chronicle, in which Steevens had a financial interest, that Martin describes as consisting of "anonymous and trifling notes […] which niggled at minor points, textual and factual", which were probably written by Steevens or at his behest.

Social rise and "The Club"



Image:JoshuaReynoldsParty.jpg|A Literary Party at Sir Joshua Reynolds's (1781). The painting shows the friends of Reynolds, many of whom were members of "The Club". (Clickable image—use cursor to identify.) |right|upright=2.0|thumb

poly 133 343 124 287 159 224 189 228 195 291 222 311 209 343 209 354 243 362 292 466 250 463 Dr Johnson - Dictionary writer
Samuel Johnson
Samuel Johnson , often referred to as Dr. Johnson, was an English author who made lasting contributions to English literature as a poet, essayist, moralist, literary critic, biographer, editor and lexicographer...


poly 76 224 84 255 43 302 62 400 123 423 121 361 137 344 122 290 111 234 96 225 Boswell - Biographer
James Boswell
James Boswell, 9th Laird of Auchinleck was a lawyer, diarist, and author born in Edinburgh, Scotland; he is best known for the biography he wrote of one of his contemporaries, the English literary figure Samuel Johnson....


poly 190 276 208 240 229 228 247 238 250 258 286 319 282 323 223 323 220 301 200 295 Sir Joshua Reynolds - Host
Joshua Reynolds
Sir Joshua Reynolds RA FRS FRSA was an influential 18th-century English painter, specialising in portraits and promoting the "Grand Style" in painting which depended on idealization of the imperfect. He was one of the founders and first President of the Royal Academy...


poly 308 317 311 270 328 261 316 246 320 228 343 227 357 240 377 274 366 284 352 311 319 324 David Garrick - actor
David Garrick
David Garrick was an English actor, playwright, theatre manager and producer who influenced nearly all aspects of theatrical practice throughout the 18th century and was a pupil and friend of Dr Samuel Johnson...


poly 252 406 313 343 341 343 366 280 383 273 372 251 378 222 409 228 414 280 420 292 390 300 374 360 359 437 306 418 313 391 272 415 Edmund Burke - statesman
Edmund Burke
Edmund Burke PC was an Irish statesman, author, orator, political theorist and philosopher who, after moving to England, served for many years in the House of Commons of Great Britain as a member of the Whig party....


rect 418 220 452 287 Pasqual Paoli - Corsican patriot
Pasquale Paoli
Filippo Antonio Pasquale di Paoli , was a Corsican patriot and leader, the president of the Executive Council of the General Diet of the People of Corsica...


poly 455 238 484 253 505 303 495 363 501 377 491 443 429 439 423 375 466 352 Charles Burney - music historian
Charles Burney
Charles Burney FRS was an English music historian and father of authors Frances Burney and Sarah Burney.-Life and career:...


poly 501 279 546 237 567 239 572 308 560 326 537 316 530 300 502 289 Thomas Warton - poet laureate
Thomas Warton
Thomas Warton was an English literary historian, critic, and poet. From 1785 to 1790 he was the Poet Laureate of England...


poly 572 453 591 446 572 373 603 351 562 325 592 288 573 260 573 248 591 243 615 254 637 280 655 334 705 396 656 419 625 382 609 391 613 453 Oliver Goldsmith - writer
Oliver Goldsmith
Oliver Goldsmith was an Irish writer, poet and physician known for his novel The Vicar of Wakefield , his pastoral poem The Deserted Village , and his plays The Good-Natur'd Man and She Stoops to Conquer...


rect 450 86 584 188 Joshua Reynolds' painting The Infant Academy (1782)
Joshua Reynolds
Sir Joshua Reynolds RA FRS FRSA was an influential 18th-century English painter, specialising in portraits and promoting the "Grand Style" in painting which depended on idealization of the imperfect. He was one of the founders and first President of the Royal Academy...


rect 286 87 376 191 Joshua Reynolds' painting Puck (1789)
Joshua Reynolds
Sir Joshua Reynolds RA FRS FRSA was an influential 18th-century English painter, specialising in portraits and promoting the "Grand Style" in painting which depended on idealization of the imperfect. He was one of the founders and first President of the Royal Academy...


circle 100 141 20 An unknown portrait
Joshua Reynolds
Sir Joshua Reynolds RA FRS FRSA was an influential 18th-century English painter, specialising in portraits and promoting the "Grand Style" in painting which depended on idealization of the imperfect. He was one of the founders and first President of the Royal Academy...


poly 503 192 511 176 532 176 534 200 553 219 554 234 541 236 525 261 506 261 511 220 515 215 servant - poss. Francis Barber
Francis Barber
Francis Barber was the Jamaican manservant of Samuel Johnson in London from 1752 until Johnson's death in 1784. Johnson made him his residual heir, with £70 a year to be given him by Trustees, expressing the wish that he move from London to Lichfield in Staffordshire, Johnson's native city...


rect 12 10 702 500 Use button to enlarge or use hyperlinks

desc bottom-left

When Malone first arrived in England in 1777 he already had a connection to Samuel Johnson and George Steevens, and, through his boyhood friend Robert Jephson
Robert Jephson
Robert Jephson was an Irish dramatist and politician.He was born in Ireland. After serving for some years in the British army, he retired with the rank of captain, and lived in England where he was the friend of David Garrick, Joshua Reynolds, Oliver Goldsmith, Samuel Johnson, Edmund Burke,...

, to James Caulfeild, 1st Earl of Charlemont
James Caulfeild, 1st Earl of Charlemont
James Caulfeild, 1st Earl of Charlemont KP PC was an Irish statesman.The son of the 3rd Viscount Charlemont, he was born in Dublin, and succeeded his father as 4th Viscount in 1734...

. Johnson, of course, was among the most esteemed men of letters, and Steevens was then the foremost commentator on Shakespeare and the current inheritor of the editor's mantle for the Tonson editions; but Charlemont also had the connections to introduce Malone to a wide variety of the eminent men of the day. With these recommendations and the fame garnered by his scholarly work he was by the early 1780s often to be found in the company of the greatest literary and theatrical minds of the era. He dined regularly with Johnson, Steevens, Reed, Reynolds, Richard Farmer
Richard Farmer
Dr Richard Farmer was a Shakespearean scholar and Master of Emmanuel College, Cambridge. He is known for his Essay on the Learning of Shakespeare , in which he maintained that Shakespeare's knowledge of the classics was through translations, the errors of which he reproduced.-Life:He was born at...

, Horace Walpole, John Nichols
John Nichols (printer)
John Nichols was an English printer, author and antiquary.-Early life and apprenticeship:He was born in Islington, London to Edward Nichols and Anne Wilmot. On 22 June 1766 he married Anne Cradock daughter of William Cradock...

, and John Henderson
John Henderson (actor)
-Further reading:...

. But by this time Johnson's advancing age and ill health prevented his socializing as much as in earlier years, and Malone did not often enough get a chance to spend time with him or people like Edmund Burke
Edmund Burke
Edmund Burke PC was an Irish statesman, author, orator, political theorist and philosopher who, after moving to England, served for many years in the House of Commons of Great Britain as a member of the Whig party....

, James Boswell
James Boswell
James Boswell, 9th Laird of Auchinleck was a lawyer, diarist, and author born in Edinburgh, Scotland; he is best known for the biography he wrote of one of his contemporaries, the English literary figure Samuel Johnson....

, Edward Gibbon
Edward Gibbon
Edward Gibbon was an English historian and Member of Parliament...

, Charles Burney
Charles Burney
Charles Burney FRS was an English music historian and father of authors Frances Burney and Sarah Burney.-Life and career:...

, Joseph Banks
Joseph Banks
Sir Joseph Banks, 1st Baronet, GCB, PRS was an English naturalist, botanist and patron of the natural sciences. He took part in Captain James Cook's first great voyage . Banks is credited with the introduction to the Western world of eucalyptus, acacia, mimosa and the genus named after him,...

, William Windham
William Windham
William Windham PC, PC was a British Whig statesman.-Early life:Windham was a member of an ancient Norfolk family and a great-great-grandson of Sir John Wyndham. He was the son of William Windham, Sr. of Felbrigg Hall and his second wife, Sarah Lukin...

, Charles James Fox
Charles James Fox
Charles James Fox PC , styled The Honourable from 1762, was a prominent British Whig statesman whose parliamentary career spanned thirty-eight years of the late 18th and early 19th centuries and who was particularly noted for being the arch-rival of William Pitt the Younger...

, or John Wilkes
John Wilkes
John Wilkes was an English radical, journalist and politician.He was first elected Member of Parliament in 1757. In the Middlesex election dispute, he fought for the right of voters—rather than the House of Commons—to determine their representatives...

.

At the same time, membership in "The Club"—founded by Johnson and Reynolds in 1764, and whose membership included several of those people whom Malone longed to see—had become a much sought-after honor. Malone dearly wanted to get in, but even though he had the support of Charlemont and Reynolds, he was thwarted by circumstances. The Club was founded specifically to be exclusive, and to that end limited the number of members, at that time to 35 at any given time. Since members very rarely left, the only openings came when a member died; and after the latest member, David Garrick
David Garrick
David Garrick was an English actor, playwright, theatre manager and producer who influenced nearly all aspects of theatrical practice throughout the 18th century and was a pupil and friend of Dr Samuel Johnson...

, had died in 1779, the members resolved to keep his spot open in honor of the great actor and theatre manager. Votes were taken on several occasions, but the candidates were always blackballed.

It was not until 5 February 1782 that "[…] the memory of Garrick having dimmed sufficiently, Malone at last was admitted into this august company […]". He attended his first meeting on 19 February 1782 and quickly became one of The Club's most enthusiastic supporters and, as its treasurer, held the only permanent office associated with it. His motivation for wanting to join The Club was partly to see Johnson more often, but Johnson's health was deteriorating and no longer attended the club's dinners regularly. The first one he attended after Malone was accepted was on 2 April, and in the period until Johnson's death on 13 December 1784, they saw each other at the club only five times, the first time on 2 April 1782 and the last on 22 June 1784, when Johnson "was in obvious pain and had to drag himself to get there." Johnson was also too ill to visit Malone, but he appreciated company at his house at Bolt Court, and Malone visited frequently. He kept notes on their conversations that Boswell later included in his The Life of Samuel Johnson, LL.D. (1791), and the letter to Malone from John Byng, 5th Viscount Torrington
John Byng, 5th Viscount Torrington
John Byng, 5th Viscount Torrington , styled Hon. John Byng until 1812, was one of the most notable of English eighteenth-century diarists...

 is the best account that survives of Johnson's last hours.

Chatterton forgeries





In 1769, the poet Thomas Chatterton
Thomas Chatterton
Thomas Chatterton was an English poet and forger of pseudo-medieval poetry. He died of arsenic poisoning, either from a suicide attempt or self-medication for a venereal disease.-Childhood:...

, only 17 years old, sent Horace Walpole the first of a series of poems supposedly written by a 15th-century monk named Thomas Rowley but really written by Chatterton himself. Other poems followed. Walpole was briefly taken in, but later reconsidered. When Chatterton committed suicide the following year, there were rumours that Walpole's treatment of the young man had played a part. Despite Walpole's scepticism, in 1777, shortly after Edmond Malone's arrival in London, Thomas Tyrwhitt
Thomas Tyrwhitt
Thomas Tyrwhitt was an English classical scholar and critic.-Life:He was born in London, where he also died. He was educated at Eton and Queen's College, Oxford . In 1756 he was appointed under-secretary at war, in 1762 clerk of the House of Commons...

 published Chatterton's forgeries as Poems, Supposed to Have Been Written at Bristol, by Thomas Rowley and Others, in the Fifteenth Century. This created a great controversy, with much debate about their authenticity. For the third edition in 1778 he added an appendix arguing against the poems' antiquity, and Thomas Warton
Thomas Warton
Thomas Warton was an English literary historian, critic, and poet. From 1785 to 1790 he was the Poet Laureate of England...

, in his The History of English Poetry (1778), devoted an entire chapter to it. Those favouring the authenticity of the Rowley poems responded in late 1781 when, just days apart, Jacob Bryant
Jacob Bryant
Jacob Bryant was a British scholar and mythographer, who has been described as "the outstanding figure among the mythagogues who flourished in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries".-Life:...

, a classical scholar, published Observations upon the Poems of Thomas Rowley; in Which the Authenticity of Those Poems is Ascertained, and Jeremiah Milles, Dean of Exeter
Dean of Exeter
The Dean of Exeter is the head of the Chapter of Cathedral Church of Saint Peter in Exeter, England. The chapter was established by Bishop William Briwere who set up the offices of Dean and chancellor of Exeter Cathedral, allowing the chapter to elect those officers.The current Dean lives at the...

 and President of the Society of Antiquaries of London
Society of Antiquaries of London
The Society of Antiquaries of London is a learned society "charged by its Royal Charter of 1751 with 'the encouragement, advancement and furtherance of the study and knowledge of the antiquities and history of this and other countries'." It is based at Burlington House, Piccadilly, London , and is...

, published Poems, Supposed to Have Been Written at Bristol, in the Fifteenth Century, by Thomas Rowley, Priest, &c.; With a Commentary in Which the Antiquity of Them Is Considered and Defended.

Works

  • 1778 – "An Attempt to Ascertain the Order in Which the Plays Attributed to Shakspeare Were Written", in The Plays of William Shakespeare in Ten Volumes, Samuel Johnson and George Steevens, eds. (1778), 2nd ed., vol I, pp. 269–346.
  • 1780 – Supplement to Johnson and Steevens’s edition of Shakespeare’s Plays.
  • 1787 – A Dissertation on the Three Parts of King Henry VI.
  • 1790 – Works of Shakespeare. Sixteen volumes.
  • 1792 – A Letter to the Rev. Richard Farmer; Relative to the Edition of Shakspeare, published in MDCCXC, and some late criticisms on that work. (This is the date of the 2nd edition.)
  • 1796 – An inquiry into the authenticity of certain miscellaneous papers and legal instruments published Dec 24 MDCCXCV and attributed to Shakspeare, Queen Elizabeth and Henry, Earl of Southampton.
  • 1800 – The Critical and Miscellaneous Prose Works of John Dryden, Now First Collected: With Notes and Illustrations; an Account of the Life and Writings of the Author Grounded on Original and Authentick Documents. Four volumes.
  • 1801 – The Works of Sir Joshua Reynolds, Knight.
  • 1809Parliamentary Logick, the writings of William Gerard Hamilton
    William Gerard Hamilton
    William Gerard Hamilton , English statesman and Irish politician, popularly known as "Single Speech Hamilton," was born in London, the son of a Scottish bencher of Lincoln's Inn....

     with notes on the Corn Laws
    Corn Laws
    The Corn Laws were trade barriers designed to protect cereal producers in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland against competition from less expensive foreign imports between 1815 and 1846. The barriers were introduced by the Importation Act 1815 and repealed by the Importation Act 1846...

     by Samuel Johnson
    Samuel Johnson
    Samuel Johnson , often referred to as Dr. Johnson, was an English author who made lasting contributions to English literature as a poet, essayist, moralist, literary critic, biographer, editor and lexicographer...

    .
  • 1809 – An account of the incidents from which the title and part of the story of Shakspeare’s Tempest were derived; and its true date ascertained.
  • 1821 – Life of Shakespeare. In Works of Shakespeare (1821), Volume II.

The Plays and Poems of William Shakespeare


The next seven years were devoted to Malone's own edition of Shakespeare in eleven volumes, of which his essays on the history of the stage, his biography of Shakespeare, and his attack on the genuineness of the three parts of Henry VI
Henry VI
Henry VI may refer to:* Henry VI, Holy Roman Emperor .* Henry VI of Luxembourg, Count of Luxembourg, * Henry VI of England...

, were especially valuable. His editorial work was lauded by Burke, criticized by Walpole and damned by Joseph Ritson
Joseph Ritson
Joseph Ritson was an English antiquary.He was born at Stockton-on-Tees, of a Westmorland yeoman family. He was educated for the law, and settled in London as a conveyancer at the age of twenty-two. He devoted his spare time to literature, and in 1782 published an attack on Thomas Warton's History...

. It certainly showed indefatigable research and proper respect for the text of the earlier editions.

The Ireland forgeries



Malone published a denial of the claim to antiquity of the Rowley poems produced by Thomas Chatterton
Thomas Chatterton
Thomas Chatterton was an English poet and forger of pseudo-medieval poetry. He died of arsenic poisoning, either from a suicide attempt or self-medication for a venereal disease.-Childhood:...

, and in this (1782) as in his branding (1796) of the Ireland
William Henry Ireland
William Henry Ireland was an English forger of would-be Shakespearean documents and plays. He is less well-known as a poet, writer of gothic novels and histories...

 manuscripts as forgeries
Ireland Shakespeare Forgeries
The Ireland Shakespeare forgeries were a cause célèbre in 1790s London, when author and engraver Samuel Ireland announced the discovery of a treasure-trove of Shakespearean manuscripts by his son William Henry Ireland. Among them were the manuscripts of four plays, two of them previously unknown...

, he was among the first to guess and state the truth. His elaborate edition of John Dryden
John Dryden
John Dryden was an influential English poet, literary critic, translator, and playwright who dominated the literary life of Restoration England to such a point that the period came to be known in literary circles as the Age of Dryden.Walter Scott called him "Glorious John." He was made Poet...

's works (1800), with a memoir, was another monument to his industry, accuracy and scholarly care. In 1801 the University of Dublin
University of Dublin
The University of Dublin , corporately designated the Chancellor, Doctors and Masters of the University of Dublin , located in Dublin, Ireland, was effectively founded when in 1592 Queen Elizabeth I issued a charter for Trinity College, Dublin, as "the mother of a university" – this date making it...

 made him an LL.D.

Malone–Boswell Shakespeare


At the time of his death, Malone was at work on a new octavo edition of Shakespeare, and he left his material to James Boswell the younger; the result was the edition of 1821 generally known as the Third Variorum edition in twenty-one volumes. Lord Sunderlin (1738–1816), his elder brother and executor, presented the larger part of Malone's book collection, including dramatic varieties, to the Bodleian Library
Bodleian Library
The Bodleian Library , the main research library of the University of Oxford, is one of the oldest libraries in Europe, and in Britain is second in size only to the British Library...

, which subsequently bought many of his manuscript notes and his literary correspondence. The British Museum
British Museum
The British Museum is a museum of human history and culture in London. Its collections, which number more than seven million objects, are amongst the largest and most comprehensive in the world and originate from all continents, illustrating and documenting the story of human culture from its...

 also owns some of his letters and his annotated copy of Johnson's Dictionary.

A memoir of Malone by James Boswell is included in the prolegomena to the edition of 1821.

Reputation and legacy


The Malone Society
Malone Society
The Malone Society is a British-based scholarly society devoted to the study of sixteenth- and early seventeenth-century drama. It publishes editions of plays from manuscript, facsimile editions of printed and manuscript plays of the period, and editions of original documents relating to English...

, devoted to the study of sixteenth- and early seventeenth-century English drama, was named after him.

External links


  • http://www.irishtimes.com/ancestor/surname/index.cfm?fuseaction=History&Surname=malone&UserID=