Internet Shakespeare Editions

About the Internet Shakespeare Editions Website

In a busy month, our server receives requests from around the world for over 1.5 million pages, and many visitors stay to examine dozens of pages. While our audience is global, our statistics show a high proportion of visitors from educational institutions.

Those who visit our site discover a "one-stop shop" of resources in Shakespeare study: we publish in the areas of Shakespeare’s text, context, and performance.

Text

We publish several versions of Shakespeare's works: old-spelling transcriptions, modern editions, and facsimile images of the originals. Shakespeare's works are being re-edited specifically for the digital medium by an international team of scholars. The works are initially published as "pre-prints" so that they can be accessed in draft form; when the editorial process is complete each page indicates that the contents have been peer reviewed. The fully edited works are annotated to a deep scholarly level, and are accompanied by a text-base of supplementary and supporting materials. All plays are currently published in old-spelling versions, and twenty-two plays and most of the poems now appear in modern spelling. 

These plays have ben completed and published online—and the list is growing:

Many more works are well on the way. The Tempest, Othello, King John, and Richard II are substantially complete; David Bevington's Hamlet already has no less than four versions of the play available in modern spelling.

Distilled versions of our online texts are also appearing in print. Our modern-spelling texts are being published by Broadview Press as a series of volumes that provide students with a convenient starting point for more in-depth study online. Penguin Books has licensed our old-spelling texts for a forthcoming version of the First Folio.

Context

Shakespeare's Life and Times is a multimedia resource of over 1,000 virtual pages for those undertaking research in the context in which Shakespeare was writing; it is aimed at introductory university-level students, and provides contextual bibliographies for further study in the library. Sections of the site deal with Shakespeare's life, the stage he wrote for, and the background of ideas, politics, literature, and art.

Assistant Coordinating Editor Janelle Jenstad is currently working on expanding and updating this section of the site. SLT 2.0 is scheduled to be released in Fall 2014.

Shakespeare was not alone as a writer in his period. Unfortunately many works of his contemporaries are out of print, or available only in expensive editions. To remedy this situation, the ISE is providing its software and publication platform to two sibling organizations that are creating scholarly editions of early modern writers other than Shakespeare: the Queen's Men Editions (University of McMaster) and Digital Renaissance Editions (University of Western Australia).

Performance

Our database of Shakespeare in Performance records current and historical performances, providing a dynamic view of the way his plays have been interpreted over time and in different cultures. Theaters across the world contribute to the database, updating it with new performances each year, creating both for themselves and those around the world interested in theater a lasting digital archive of performance. We provide a free promotional service to theater companies by posting their upcoming productions online in our Shakespeare Calendar, and by highlighting them on each page of the site. 

Become a Friend of the ISE