(29) His shop and his stock were then taken over from Woodcock's widow by John Flasket and his business partner, Paul Linley, and his titles transferred to Linley in the Stationers' Register.
Flasket and Linley are two key figures in the story I am telling here.
For that to happen, Blount transfers the title to Paul Linley no sooner than his edition has been printed, allowing Linley and Flasket to bring out another edition of the poem, not a five-sheet pamphlet like his, but a more substantial book of 13 sheets quarto, completed by George Chapman.
It is clear from their imprints that after Flasket ended his publishing career, Blount was selling books from the Bear, but given how rarely he mentions his address in his imprints, do we really need to assume that he only starts using the shop then, in 16097 And given his close ties to Linley, could he not have been selling Hero and Leander from the Bear as early as 1598?
My point is not that we need to reject the attribution of the poem to Marlowe, only that it is an uncertain, because overdetermined affair, with the only independent witness, Englands Helicon, coming from the shop whose owner, John Flasket, had an obvious investment in the scarce commodity that is Marlovian writing.
No sooner has Thorpe's edition of Lucan come out, it is incorporated into a larger bibliographical unit published by Flasket: a Sammelband which attaches it to a new edition of Hero and Leander.
Given their close ties, and given the fact that Thorpe's edition of Lucan was reissued by Flasket, is it not possible that Thorpe was on occasion also conducting business at the Bear?
First of all, in practical terms, the realization of this collaboration and coexistence of Linley, Flasket, Blount, and Thorpe at the Bear helps to clarify some aspects of the rather complicated history of the copyright of Marlowe's Hero and of his translation of Lucan, which is another of the titles passed around by the Bear publishers without making a formal transfer.
As Diana Henderson has observed, unlike all other, later replies to it, "Sir Walter Raleigh's famous answering poem, 'The Nymph's Reply to the Sheepheard,' is less a parody than a necessary and implied companion piece." (68) This formal and stylistic observation is borne out by the two poems' history of circulation: until it was published by Flasket, this favorite anthology piece did not even have an existence separate from what we now refer to as Raleigh's reply to it.
The first Marlowe at the shop, The Tragedie of Dido Queene of Carthage, written by Christopher Marlow and Thomas Nash, Gent., not only announces the collaborative nature of the text--but, as Kirk Melnikoff argues, Flasket and Linley may well have been selling it as part of a nonce collection consisting of Dido and John Dickinson's 1594 pastoral romance Arisbas, that is, as a collection quite similar to the 1600 Hero-Lucan reissue.