There are four recorded sixteenth-century copies of Everyman, each from a different edition: two by John Skot (1528, STC 10606) (1535, STC 10606.5), and two by Richard Pynson (1515, STC 10604) (1526, STC 10604.5). The two Skot copies are complete. The first Pynson copy is a four-leaf fragment (including the colophon); the second Pynson copy lacks signature A (12 leaves). In 1910, in the final volume of his critical editions of these fragments, W.W. Greg considered what these surviving copies indicate about the popularity of this text; how many editions might have been produced in the early sixteenth century? Since no two of the four surviving copies are from the same edition, what can we say about the total number of editions that were produced? Greg’s note is as follows:

It is obvious that, if no more than 4 editions are printed, it is very unlikely that, of 4 surviving copies, each should belong to a different edition (in point of fact the chance is only 3/32 or about 1 in 11), and that as the number of editions printed increases so does the probability of such an occurrence. There must therefore be a point (a particular number of editions) at which the chance approximates most nearly to 1/2. That number is 10, for which the actual chance is 1/2 + 1/250. Ten, therefore, is the smallest number of editions which make the actually occurring arrangement as likely as not to occur.1