The Handbook of Shakespeare Music, Being an Account of Three Hundred and Fifty Pieces of Music Set to Words Taken From the Plays and Poems of Shakespeare, the Compositions Ranging From the Elizabethan Age to the Present Time
The following pages were compiled by the late Mr. Alfred Roffe, an intelligent and enthusiastic student of Shakespeare and of music. He finished the work - a labour of love which had occupied very many of his leisure hours — about twelve years ago, when the MSS. passed into my hands. I had been unable, owing to incessant occupation, to pay much attention to it until recently, when, after more careful perusal, it occurred to me and to some other old friends of the author whom I had an opportunity of consulting, that the volume might possibly be welcomed as a useful and interesting addition to many Shakespearian libraries. Hence its publication. It may be as well to add that I have, in no respect, assumed the functions of an editor. The text and arrangement of the writer have been strictly adhered to, and I have made no attempt to verify his authorities; a task which, knowing so thoroughly the scrupulous accuracy of my late friend, I should have considered needless, even had I possessed sufficient time and aptitude for its accomplishment.