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An Edition of The Rover This project grew out of an exercise designed primarily to give graduate students practical experience in the processes of textual bibliography It was continued and completed based on two beliefs first that the errors found amoung extant editions are significant enough to warrant further revision and second that the existence of a text with format and language accessible to modern readers is essential to the survival of this important work With these aims in mind we have worked to produce an edition of The Rover that respects not only the believed intentions of the author and the integrity of the earliest texts but also the needs and concerns of contemporary students teachers actors directors and audiences of all sorts The version of the play chosen as the copy text for this edition was the second issue of the first edition printed in 1677 The first comparison text was an issue of the second edition that was printed in 1697 The second comparison text was a 1915 volume edited by Montague Summers Summers text was chosen because it is based primarily upon a 1724 collection of Behns dramatic pieces--a collection that according to Summers is by far the best and most reliable edition of the collected theater Most of the changes documented in the textual notes stem from substantive discrepancies between these three texts Often these discrepancies are the result of words or phrases being inverted from one edition to another Note 44 for instance concerns the stage directions in a scene where Florinda hugs Belvile and his vizard falls off In the earliest edition the hugging precedes the unmasquing but in the 1697 edition the masque falls off before the embrace The order in which these actions are performed have significant consequence for the audiences understanding of Florindas motivations is she hugging Belvile because she thinks he is Belvile or because she thinks he is someone else
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