In honor of William Shakespeare’s birthday, Mount Gilead Public Library in conjunction with the Rose Heart Inn will exhibit a collection of rare prints from the Boydell Shakespeare Gallery from April 15 through April 25.
John Boydell, a London publisher and engraver, first opened the Shakespeare gallery on Pall Mall Street in 1789.
Crafted from copper engravings of commissioned paintings at the Pall Mall gallery, the Boydell prints feature scenes from William Shakespeare’s plays. Many of the 100 engravings that comprise the Boydell collection of prints, completed between 1791 and 1802, represent the only surviving images of the original works of art.
Visitors will be able to view the 220-year old prints in chronological order: Mount Gilead Public Library will display prints of Shakespeare’s early plays including Romeo and Juliet, Much Ado about Nothing, and Midsummer Night’s Dream; The Rose Heart Inn will exhibit his later work including Twelfth Night, Hamlet, and Macbeth. Many of the well-known verses from Shakespeare’s plays are visible beneath the images, each depicting a particular act and scene, along with the names of the artist and engraver.
“We are delighted in having the opportunity to present to the public this unique collection of rare prints that highlight the revival of interest in Shakespeare during the late 18th century in Britain,” said Scot Long, co-owner of the Rose Heart Inn and curator of the collection.
As part of the Rose Heart Inn portion of the gallery, visitors will also be invited on a complimentary tour of the 1898 Queen Ann Victorian bed & breakfast including the parlor, dining room, grand staircase, and each of the five rental rooms.
The Boydell Shakespeare Gallery event is free and open to the public. Both the library and the Rose Heart Inn are located on East High Street in Mount Gilead, just one block from the square. Hours at both locations are Monday through Thursday 10:30 a.m.-7 p.m., Friday and Saturday 10:30 a.m.-5 p.m., and closed Sunday.
Sponsors of the art gallery include Morrow County Hospital, RE/MAX Genesis Reality, First Knox National Bank, and Schmidt Security Pro.