Picard's Shakespeare Books
by Jörg Hillebrand and Bernd Schneider
In TNG: "Hide and Q" Q reads in Captain Picard's Shakespeare book. When he flings the book at Picard we can clearly recognize the cover. It is The Globe Illustrated Shakespeare – The Complete Works Annotated. So far I assumed that this book is the same one that can be seen flipped open in the showcase in Picard's ready room in nearly all TNG episodes. I did screen caps from various episodes, but none of them is clear enough to allow an identification of the pages that are visible, or of which illustrations from which plays are depicted.
I tried to get my hands on the very same edition of the Globe Illustrated Shakespeare at Amazon, which turned out to be quite difficult. Until now I still have not managed to acquire the very same edition as Picard. I do have the 1979 edition with its relatively simple cover. Furthermore, I own the 1983 edition, which already has the same cover as Picard's edition but with a red leather binding. I also have the 1986 edition. This one too has the same cover as Picard's and the same blue/black leather binding. The central depiction of the Globe Theatre, however, is gold/blue on the '86 edition, and not gold/red as on Picard's.
While my search will go on, it is important to note that the content, including the page numbers, is the same in the three latter editions.
Hence, based on the blurred screen caps I could identify the pages of the book that are visible in episodes. A couple of double pages appear frequently, while other pages can be seen only in single episodes. All pages can be found in the middle of the book, because the only way it could be presented properly in the glass case was when it was half flipped open.
As I sifted through the episodes I found that Picard not only has an opened book in the ready room but also in his quarters. This one is initially visible in a shelf, later also on a dedicated small desk beside the entrance to his quarters. In later episodes Data too has an open book in a shelf in his quarters. I have investigated these appearances as well.
The first time that I had doubts that the Globe Illustrated Shakespeare is visible in all seven seasons in Picard's ready room was when I watched the scenes in this room in "The Offspring". This episode has the arguably best shot of the book. The illustration on the page shows Titania and Nick Bottom, mutated to a donkey, in A Midsummer Night's Dream. This noted image by Henry Fuselli does not appear in the Globe Illustrated Shakespeare. At least in this one episode we see another book in the showcase.
Looking at "Chain of Command, Parts I & II" there are also two scenes with evidence that the book is another one.
When Jellico takes over command of the Enterprise-D, he is talking with Picard in his ready room, and he gives Picard the Shakespeare book to take with him. This book is visibly thinner than the one that Picard is holding in "Hide and Q". Moreover, it has a red cloth binding. In "Chain of Command, Part II" we can see how Riker thumbs through the book. It too has the red cloth binding, and its illustrations do not match the ones in the Globe Illustrated Shakespeare.
So I searched for more large-format Shakespeare books and eventually found the right one. We are dealing with one of the three volumes of The Annotated Shakespeare, published by A. L. Rowse (1978). The cover matches perfectly with the screen caps from "Chain of Command, Parts I & II". And so I went and bought all three volumes.
I quickly noticed that the major part of the screen caps from Picard's ready room actually don't show the Globe Illustrated Shakespeare but the Annotated Shakespeare. Vol. I of the latter book is the most frequently visible one, vol. II can be seen predominantly in later episodes. We can spot the Annotated Shakespeare as well in Data's quarters in a number of episodes.
Now that I was in possession of all the required Shakespeare books, I could go through my screen cap collection once again and identify the visible pages in almost all cases. It also became clear when the exchange of the books took place and when vol. II of the Annotated Shakespeare appeared on the scene in addition to vol. I.
In the following I will list in which episodes which page pairs can be seen. In some special cases I will further elucidate the appearances of the books.
Globe Illustrated Shakespeare – The Complete Works Annotated
Edited by Howard Staunton,
illustrated by John Gilbert, published by Greenwich House, Inc.
This book was only visible in Picard's ready room during the first season of TNG. It was replaced with the Annotated Shakespeare towards the end of that season.
The question may arise why the Globe Illustrated Shakespeare was replaced with the Annotated Shakespeare so soon. The following reason is possible: The pages of the Globe Illustrated Shakespeare are very thin, like Bible pages. Therefore the pages of a standing book tend to slip down easily (as is visible in "Coming of Age" and "Where Silence Has Lease"). It may have been necessary to re-arrange the pages between the takes in order to maintain scene continuity. This was time-consuming and may have been the reason to switch to a different book with thicker pages. Vol. I of the Annotated Shakespeare was acquired for Picard's quarters in "The Battle". It is overall much thinner than the Globe Illustrated Shakespeare, and with considerably thicker paper. Hence, the pages remain in place with ease when flipped open.
This new book from Picard's quarters was later transferred to the ready room, where it would be visible much more often, while the Globe Illustrated Shakespeare wound up in Picard's quarters ("Where Silence Has Lease"). When the book was visible another time in Picard's quarters, another solution had been found, however (see below).
Appearances of The Globe Illustrated Shakespeare
Encounter at Farpoint
For "All Good Things" Picard's ready room would be reverted to the state of 2364, but oddly the Shakespeare book was removed altogether from that timeframe. In the scenes that take place in the present of 2370, the Annotated Shakespeare is visible as usual. In the scenes depicting the past the glass case as well as the Globe Illustrated Shakespeare are missing, although they were evidently already there in "Encounter at Farpoint".
The Naked Now
Hide and Q
This book will appear three more times, however in Picard's quarters.
Where Silence Has Leasebelow). I could find the depiction visible in "Where Silence Has Lease" in the Globe Illustrated Shakespeare on pages 1146/1147. It is the first depiction about Henry VI, Part III.
There is a book in Picard's quarters to that looks just like the Globe Illustrated Shakespeare. But I could not identify the pages.
Star Trek: Insurrection
Edited by A. L. Rowse, published by
Clarkson N. Potter, Inc., distributed by Crown Publishers, Inc.
Beginning with "Arsenal of Freedom" (and prior to that in Picard's quarters in "The Battle") the Annotated Shakespeare could be seen in the ready room. This book is different from the Globe Illustrated Shakespeare in that it contains not only illustrations from a single artist (John Gilbert) but from various artists and also photos. This is how a number of famous Shakespeare actors were immortalized in Star Trek.
In 1978 the book was released in three volumes in a slipcase. The first two volumes of this edition were visible in TNG. In 1984 Greenwich House released all three volumes in a thick hardcover book. This one has pages as thin as in the Globe Illustrated Shakespeare. This edition never appeared on Star Trek, however.
In the first three seasons of TNG we can see exclusively vol. I (The Comedies). As it was with the Globe Illustrated Shakespeare too, all pages that we can see on screen can be found in the middle part of the book.
Some of the pages from the Annotated Shakespeare have not yet been identified: "Angel One", "Allegiance", "Devil’s Due" (Picard's quarters), "Qpid", "The Perfect Mate" (Picard's quarters), "I, Borg" (Picard's quarters) and "Second Chances".
Appearances of The Annotated Shakespeare - Volume I
We can make out a book in the quarters, but I could not find out which pages.
The Arsenal of Freedom
The Schizoid Man
Sins of the Father
Once again there is book in Picard's quarters in "Sarek". This is the first time that I could positively identify a page from vol. II of the Annotated Shakespeare. It is very likely that the book from "Allegiance" is this second volume too. More about this volume further below.
Ménage à Troi
Interestingly, the same page of the same book can be seen in Picard's quarters in this episode.
The Mind's Eye
A Matter of Time
The Perfect Mate
Beginning with "Man of the People" we can see pages from the second volume of the Annotated Shakespeare in the ready room. In the following episodes the two volumes appear alternatingly. The appearances of the second volume will be investigated further down.
The Quality of Life
Chain of Command, Part Ibelow.
Chain of Command, Part II
Face of the Enemy
In this episode we are shown vol. I for the last time. On all later occasions we see vol. II of the book, in the ready room as well as in Picard's quarters.
Appearances of The Annotated Shakespeare - Volume II
This is the first time that we can see the book on the small table beside the door. I could not identify the pages, however.
We can see the book in Picard's quarters yet again. The visible pages contain almost entirely text, so an identification is practically impossible.
The Perfect Mate
Same book, same place, and once again no positive identification.
Man of the People
Vol. II of the Annotated Shakespeare appears for the first time in the ready room. We see the pages 354/355, the first two ones about King John.
Chain of Command, Part I
Star Trek: Generations
Books in "Generations"
Books in "Nemesis"
Finally, in "Nemesis" there is a book in Picard's ready room. This is apparently neither the Globe Illustrated Shakespeare nor the Annotated Shakespeare.