Our century's edition of Ben Jonson

Our century's edition of Ben Jonson

The Cambridge Edition of the Works of Ben Jonson

edited by Ian Donaldson et al.

Cambridge University Press, $1,475 hb (7 vols), 5224 pp, 9780521782463

Shakespeare’s great contemporary Ben Jonson dressed an actor in armour to open his play Poetaster. The Prologue explained:

If any muse why I salute the stage,
An armèd Prologue, know, ’tis a
dangerous age,
Wherein who writes had need present
his scenes
Forty-fold proof against the conjuring
means
Of base detractors and illiterate apes,
That fill up rooms in fair and formal
shapes.

A dangerous age, and Ben Jonson was not a circumspect man. This new edition of all Ben Jonson’s work brings out the valiant nature of his achievement.

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Published in October 2014 no. 365
Lisa Gorton

Lisa Gorton

Lisa Gorton, who lives in Melbourne, is a poet, novelist, and critic, and a former Poetry Editor of ABR. She studied at the Universities of Melbourne and Oxford. A Rhodes Scholar, she completed a Masters in Renaissance Literature and a Doctorate on John Donne at Oxford University, and was awarded the John Donne Society Award for Distinguished Publication in Donne Studies. Her first poetry collection, Press Release (2007), won the Victorian Premier’s Prize for Poetry. She has also been awarded the Vincent Buckley Poetry Prize. A second poetry collection followed in 2013: Hotel Hyperion (also Giramondo). Lisa has also written a children’s novel, Cloudland (2008). Her novel The Life of Houses (2015) shared the 2016 Prime Minister’s Award for fiction. She is the editor of The Best Australian Poems 2013 (Black Inc.).

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