Download A Companion to Henslowe's Diary by Neil Carson PDF

By Neil Carson

Henslowe's 'diary' is a special resource of knowledge concerning the day by day operating of the Elizabethan repertory theatre. Philip Henslowe, a theatrical entrepreneur, stored documents of his monetary dealings with London businesses and actors from 1592-1604. The diary itself is tough to decipher. Neil Carson's research relies on a way more thorough correlation of Henslowe's entries than has been tried earlier than, breaking down into transparent tabular shape the most goods of source of revenue and expenditure and drawing conclusions concerning the administration methods of the corporations, the pro relationships of actors and playwrights and the ways that performs have been written, rehearsed and programmed. earlier hypothesis has disregarded Henslowe himself as ignorant, disorderly and greedy. Carson exhibits him to were a benign and effective businessman whose regulate over the actors' specialist actions used to be less huge than has usually been intended.

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Sample text

The same was vppon his owne offer . . e. the players'] moytie of the gains for the severall standinges in the galleries of the said howse [the Swan] . . which [they] have faithfullye performed from tyme to tyme. (Wallace 1910: 352) The statement is interesting for several reasons. It is the earliest description we have of the method of financing production expenses out of the gallery receipts which became common in the seventeenth century. Furthermore, it is the first example of a company financing itself by borrowing from a theatre owner.

44v) and the principal sharers of the new Admiral's Men acknowledged their indebtedness for the entire amount. Two questions suggest themselves. First, why would Henslowe continue to lend money to an organization which seemed unable or unwilling to repay him? Was he content to wait because he would collect interest on his money? On at least one occasion Henslowe included what he called 'forberance of my mony' in a loan to the Company. On 6 December 1602, he bought from Robert Shaa 'iiij clothe clockes layd with cope lace for iiij li a clocke' (f.

Henslowe's diary makes very infrequent reference to the payment of salaries or shares. That a record of such things was kept in some of the theatres is established by the testimony of Roger Clarke, who said that at the Red Bull the hired men's rate of salary was 'sett downe in their booke' (Sisson 1954: 63). What this suggests is that there may have been several sets of records, and that the accounts of production expenses may have been separate from those setting out the salaries and share dividends.

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