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Rt. Hon. Lord Leigh.
Thomas Amyot, Esq., F.R.S.
The Rev. W. Harness.
Knight Bruce, F.R.S., F.S.A.
TAE OBJÈCT of the Shakespeare Society is to print and distribute to the Subscribers books illustrative of Shakespeare and of the Literature of his time.
The ADVANTAGES derived from the Society are the procuring valuable and interesting works at cost price, which, if published in the usual mode, could not be purchased for three times the amount; and also the preserving and circulating rare works, which, being thus printed, are preserved from total destruction or oblivion. It will be perceived, therefore, that members of this and similar societies receive back more than the pecuniary value of their Subscription. The books are only procurable of the Society by Members.
ADMISSION to the Society, of any respectable person, is made by application to the Agent.
The SUBSCRIPTION is £1 per annum, due on the First of January in each year in advance, on payment of which the Member is entitled to a copy of every book printed by the Society for the year for which the Subscription is made. The Subscription is payable to the London Agent, by cash or through the Country Agent, and must be made for the current year. The Subscribing for any or all of the previous years is optional.
The Affairs of the Society are managed by a Council, consisting of the President, six Vice-Presidents, and twenty-one Members: five of the latter retire every year, and the vacancies are filled up, on the recommendation of the Council, from the general body of the Subscribers, at the Annual General Meeting.
The Council meet on the second Tuesday in every month, to select and superintend the works printed by the Society; and the General Members once a-year, on the 26th of April, to receive a report of the proceedings, and elect the new Councillors.
The Editors and the Council render their services gratuitously to the Society; and every means are adopted to expend as nearly as possible the whole amount of the Subscriptions in producing books; by which course alone so many are rendered for the Subscription.
The DeliveRY OP The Books is made by the London Agent, to whom all communications on the subject should be made. As it is the constant object of the Council to prevent as much as possible useless expenditure, Members are requested to make a clear and permanent arrangement with Mr. Rodd, for the delivery of the books; and it is desirable that, in towns where there is not a Country Agent, a party in London be appointed to receive the publications for the Country Subscribers. The Society deliver gratis to Members within three miles of the Agent's residence, and it is a rule most strictly adhered to, that No book shall be delivered until the Subscription is paid.
CONTRIBUTIONS to “ The Shakespeare Society's Papers are solicited by the Council-it having been deemed desirable to issue occasional volumes thus formed and entitled, in order to create a medium for preserving and distributing illustrations of the literature, which is the peculiar object of the Society.
THE SHAKESPEARE SOCI ET Y.
THE EARL OF ELLESMERE.
THOMAS AMYOT, ESQ., F.R.S.
The Council of the Shakespeare Society desire it to be understood that they are not answerable for any opinions or observations that may appear in the Society's publications; the Editors of the several works being alone responsible for the same.
The only introduction necessary to the ensuing volume, is the statement that, like the two others, entitled “ The Shakespeare Society's Papers,” in 1844 and 1845, it has arisen out of the continued transmission to the Council of essays and documents not of sufficient length to be printed by themselves. A species of miscellany, devoted to the illustration of the Life and Works of our great Dramatist and of his contemporaries, has thus been established; and it is earnestly requested that the members of the Society will continue to forward to the Council such information of the same kind as they may now possess, or may hereafter procure.