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Digital Encyclopedias and Reference Sources

Reference Databases

Variorum Editions

Variorums include a range of editions of Shakespeare's works with line by line annotations that track the various alterations made between editions, as well as critical notes about Shakespeare himself and his stage. In all, they help show the historical evolution of Shakespeare's works across editions.

The New Variorum Shakespeare, first edited by Horace Howard Furness, began with Romeo and Juliet in 1871 and amounted to 14 volumes prior to his death in 1912. This volumes include Romeo and JulietMacbeth, Hamlet, King LearOthelloThe Merchant of Venice, A Midsummer Night's DreamAs You Like ItThe Winter's TaleMuch Ado About NothingTwelfth Night; or, What You Will, and Love's Labour's Lost.

Furness's son, H.H Furness Jr. began editing the variorums after his father's death and produced v.oulmes 15-20: The Tragedy of Anthonie, and Cleopatra, The tragedy of Richard the Third, The tragedy of Julius Cæsar, The tragedy of Cymbeline, The life and death of King John, and The tragedy of Coriolanus.

In 1936, the Modern Language Association of America began publishing the series and completed volumes 21-27: Henry the Fourth, pt. 1, The phoenix and the turtle, Henry the Fourth pt. 2, The Sonnets, Troilus and Cressida, and The life and death of King Richard the Second.

UCLA Library Holdings

Online Holdings 


A concordance is an alphabetical list of all the words used in a book or a collection of works, that usually includes citations to where the word appears in the work(s).

Many of Shakespeare's works are available electronically, making it easy to look for the occurrence of specific words by using automatic search functions, but concordances can be particularly helpful since many also include some context for why or how the word was used in the work.
You can easily search for concordances in the UCLA catalog by searching "concordance Shakespeare" or "concordance [play title]" if you have a specific play you're interested in.

A few complete concordances of Shakespeare's works include: