John Ford



John Fordes Dramatische Werke, ed. Willy Bang, Materialien zur Kunde des älteren Englischen Dramas, Ser. I, Vol. 23 (Louvain, 1908; reprinted by Kraus Reprint Ltd, 1967).

De Vocht

John Ford's Dramatic Works, ed. Henry De Vocht, Materials for the Study of the Old English Drama, Ser. II, Vol. 1 (Louvain, 1927; reprinted by Kraus Reprint Ltd, 1967).


The Works of John Ford, ed. William Gifford and revised by Alexander Dyce, 3 vols (London, 1869; 1895 edition reprinted New York, 1965).

Nondramatic Works (1991)

The Nondramatic Works of John Ford, ed. L.E. Stock, Gilles D. Monsarrat, Judith M. Kennedy, and Dennis Danielson, Renaissance English Text Society (Binghamton, New York, 1991).


Manuscript Copies

No manuscripts of Ford's most famous plays, The Broken Heart and 'Tis Pity she's a Whore, are known, and of his other plays only a few early manuscript copies of particular songs are recorded. On the other hand, presentation copies of the poem Fame's Memorial (FoJ 2) and the religious essay A Line of Life (FoJ 3) are preserved. Their formal appearance suggests that they are both professional copies rather than autograph manuscripts, but there appears to be no independent example of Ford's handwriting with which to compare them.

The Canon

Apart from the poem A Contract of Love and Truth, which is ascribed to ‘J. Foord’ and has been tentatively added to the canon (FoJ 1), and the recently discovered elegy To ye memory of ye late excellent Poet John ffletcher (FoJ 2.5), the canon accepted here is that established in Dyce. For references to other works that have been at some time attributed to Ford, see Bentley, III, 433-64.


A few seventeenth- and eighteenth-century prompt-books of plays by Ford are also recorded below, as well as a manuscript adaptation of a play (FoJ 7.8, FoJ 15-16). No doubt other later prompt-books survive elsewhere.

Peter Beal