"How at the Castle of Corbin a Maiden Bare in the Sangreal and Foretold the Achievements of Galahad", Arthur Rackham
's illustration to Pollard's The Romance of King Arthur and His Knights of the Round Table
Alfred William Pollard (14 August 1859 – 8 March 1944) was an English bibliographer, widely credited for bringing a higher level of scholarly rigor to the study of Shakespearean texts.
Pollard was educated at King's College School in London and St John's College at the University of Oxford. He joined the staff of the British Museum in 1883, as assistant in the Department of Printed Books; he was promoted to Assistant Keeper in 1909, and Keeper in 1919. In the latter year, Pollard was appointed Professor of English Bibliography at the University of London. He was Honorary Secretary of the Bibliographical Society from 1893 to 1934 and edited the Society's journal The Library for thirty years (1903–34). He received the Society's Gold Medal in 1929.
Pollard wrote widely on a range of subjects in English literature throughout his career, and collaborated with various scholars in specialized studies; he edited Thomas Malory's Le Morte d'Arthur, and a collection of Fifteenth Century Poetry and Prose. He was a longtime friend of the poet A. E. Housman, and a close colleague of the prominent Shakespeare scholars Edmund Kerchever Chambers and R. B. McKerrow.
Selected Works by Alfred W. Pollard
- Records of the English Bible: The Documents Relating to the Translation and Publication of the Bible in English, 1525–1611, London, Oxford University Press, 1911.
- Shakespeare Folios and Quartos: A Study in the Bibliography of Shakespeare's Plays, 1909.
- A New Shakespeare Quarto: Richard II, 1916.
- Shakespeare's Fight with the Pirates, And the Problem of the Transmission of his Text, 1917.
- The Foundations of Shakespeare's Text, 1923.
- Shakespeare's Hand in the Play of Sir Thomas More (with W .W. Greg, Edward Maunde Thompson, John Dover Wilson, and R. W. Chambers), 1923.
- Early Illustrated Books: A History of the Decoration and Illustration of Books in the 15th and 16th Centuries, 1927.
- English Miracle Plays, Moralities and Interludes; Specimens of the Pre-Elizabethan Drama, Oxford, the Clarendon Press, 1927.
- The Trained Printer and the Amateur, and the Pleasure of Small Books, 1929.
- A Census of Shakespeare's Plays in Quarto (with Henrietta C. Bartlett), 1939.
- Woudhuysen, Henry R. A.E.H., A.W.P.: A Classical Friendship. Tunbridge Wells, Kent, Foundling Press and Bernard Quaritch, 2006.
- Murphy, Gwendoen, and Henry Thomas. A Select Bibliography of the Writings of Alfred W. Pollard. Oxford, Oxford University Press, 1938.
- New General Catalog of Old Books and Authors