Oxford: Printed for F. Bowman by John Crosley, 1668. Fifth Edition with several Additions Corrected and Amended. Small octavo : pp. 4 blank (28) 436, 2 blank : new eps : gilt dentelles with floral motif : polished calf boards with triple gilt ruled border surrounding a floral and foliate border : rebacked with red leather title panel lettered in gilt and the publication year in gilt to tail of spine.
Long note in small hand to first blank detailing the purchase of the volume in 1840 and some notes on the poet : trimmed at the head of the leaves : corners slightly rounded and gilt worn in patches but mostly bright. Item #2642
Thomas Randolph (1605-1635) was a poet, playwright and wit of great promise who was expected by many to become poet laureate after his mentor Ben Johnson. His early death at 29 (two years before Johnson) prevented this ambition from being realised.
The note at the first blank reads,
"Purchased at the sale of J. Abbot's Library Dublin 1840, for 15/6. Priced Bibl. Ang. Poet. 1/15/ : Randolph was greatly admired in his day, and, high in favour with Ben Johnson, who considered him and Cartwright his "dear sons in the Muses". He died at 29 and was supposed to have shortened his life by early excesses. His comedy of "The Muses Looking-Glass" was was revised at C. Garden in 1748, and is reprinted in Dodsley's collection of Old Plays. His verses are occasionally too licentious for modern morality. See Biog, Dram, Art. Randolph. Vol 9. Pt.2. p.590.ed.1812. This collection does not include, a comedy called 'Hey for Honesty, Down with Knavery'. First printed in 4to. A.D. 1651."
Robert Dodsley's Old Plays (mentioned in the note above) was published in London in 1744-45 (12 volumes) was a new kind of literary project: the first to publish in a single collected reprint edition the "canon" of English plays (61 in all) of the early modern and Elizabethan period (1500-1600).