London: Printed by H. Baldwin: for T. Cadell, Jun. and W. Davies, (successors to Mr. Cadell,) in the Strand, 1796. First Edition. This work was “a comprehensive and sensational exposure of the Shakespeare forgeries by William Henry Ireland” (DNB) who purportedly discovered a treasure trove of documents by Shakespeare including the unknown play Vortigern and Rowena. The instant work was published a few days prior to the first performance of Vortigern, which was interrupted and heckled throughout by the “Malone faction”, which in part led it to be the only performance – until the Pembroke Players revived it for one night in 2008.
Outside of his Shakespeare research, Malone collaborated with Boswell, which “was one of the greatest literary collaborations in English literature, Malone spending hundreds of hours with Boswell, advising him, revising his manuscript, and helping to bring the [Journal of a Tour to the Hebrides] to publication” (DNB).
8vo. vii, , 424pp. + 3 foldout plates, without prospectus at rear. ESTC T37242. Very good in 19th century half leather with worn boards, a few dog-eared pages, one plate reinforced, one with a small tear, some pages browning at edges, but overall a clean copy. Item #198