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My dear Wright,
... I think the very large number of such instances [of plural nouns with singular verbs in Shakespeare] requires some other theory than mere misprinting. Why should not the quarto be liable to misprints?
Is Walker right in saying that Shakespeare's handwriting may have given rise to the s? Have you met with the extra s in Ben Johnson or Beaumont + Fletcher? I read once carefully through the whole of B. F. and I have no note of the form in s. Is it found in Spenser? Surely if it was a mere misprint it will have been foundin other Elizabethan authors. Can it not have been a midland provincialism? I am anxious for facts and hints.
Yours most truly,
Edwin A. Abbott