The Folger collection is a treasure trove for researchers. A visit might include Thomas More's Utopia in the original Latin, books of travel with maps showing cities and early views of the four continents, lavishly illustrated "festival books" from the time of Louis XIV and earlier, playbills from the most popular to the most obscure productions of the American and English stage, costumes worn by stars like Edwin Booth and Julia Marlowe, and promptbooks that record classic stagings of Shakespeare's plays. Prefer art? We have thousands of illustrations of Shakespeare's plays, 17th-century prints by Wenceslaus Hollar, lighthearted porcelains, 20th-century festival posters, and countless drawings by George Romney.
See below for more information about our hundreds of thousands of items and for pictures of featured works:
- Printed books from the 1400s to the present day
- Manuscripts from the late 13th century to the present
- Works of art including paintings, illustrations, and sculpture
- Items of performance history including playbills, promptbooks, and costumes
- Nearly 200 early quartos of Shakespeare plays
- 82 copies of the First Folio of 1623