Earl of Hertford, The

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Anon. (1602)
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Historical Records

Payments to Miscellaneous Craftsmen (Henslowe's Diary)

F. 107v (Greg I, 170)

Lent vnto the company 1602 to }
paye ther billes for tayllers & others } xxxijs
for the new playe of the earlle of }
Harfurd the some of }


In the margin, preceding the entry of payment to the craftsmen, Henslowe entered the following:

totalles
li — s — d
718 — 12 — 00

Theatrical Provenance

The Admiral's company acquired the play at the start of their second full year at the Fortune playhouse.

Probable Genre(s)

History (Harbage)

Possible Narrative and Dramatic Sources or Analogues

Information welcome.

References to the Play

Information welcome.


Critical Commentary

Greg II does not offer any details on the provenance of this play or its narrative.


Gurr does not list "The Earl of Hertford: among the plays acquired by the Admiral's men, but he does note the tally of payments to the craftsmen, adding that the unrelated mention of the play for which the company spent 32s. might be for "an unnamed play from Herford's Men, or … a play about the earl, the queen's cousin" (266, n135).


Wiggins, Catalogue, considering the possible earls of Hertford who might have been part of sufficiently interesting historical action to be the subject of a play, offers "Edward Seymour, who became Edward VI's first Lord Protector" and had a role in the "Anglo-Scottish war of 1544-51" (#1347). Wiggins is persuaded in part because of the proximity in the repertory c. 1602 of contemporary history plays such as the serials on Thomas Wolsey and Lady Jane. "The Earl of Hertford," then, might have continued "an early Tudor history cycle."

For What It's Worth

Information welcome.


Works Cited


Gurr, Andrew. Shakespeare's Opposites: The Admiral's Company 1594-1625. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2009.




Site created and maintained by Roslyn L. Knutson, Professor Emerita, University of Arkansas at Little Rock; updated 14 June 2019.