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known how particular Dickens was about his illustrations, so I cannot think that these Weller plates were published under his authority, as they are very bad.
Heel-Taps.—This word is probably de. rived from to beel a cask (i. e. to tilt it) after the clear contents have been nearly drawn off, and when the liquid running from the tap begins to look turbid. Heels taps, therefore, are the residuum of liquid in an almost empty cask, and, by analogy, the leavings in a glass when the best of the liquor has been drunk off. “ No heel taps” is, both in form and in meaning, equivalent to "no leavings.' Athenæum Club.
CHARLES A. Federer.
April 23, 1616, as appears on his monument :
Obitt An Dài 1616
Æt 53, die 23 A pri." Cervantes, shortly before his death, dictated a most affectionate dedication to his patron, the Count de Lemos, who was at that time President of the Supreme Coun. cii in Italy; he informed His Excellency that he had received extreme unction, and was on the brink of Eternity. This dedication was dated April 19, 1617 (?).— Smollett's “ Don Quixote,” third edition, corrected, London, 1765, page xxix.
I conclude the date here given is a printer's error, as 1616 is the usual year assigned.
J. B. P.
Cervantes and Shakespeare.-In Bond's
Handy Book of Rules and Tables for Verifying Dates,” Bell & Daldy, London, 8vo, 1866, I find, at p. 27, the following passage :
“ As an illustration of the mistakes which are made by overlooking the fact, that the New Style was adopted earlier in some countries than in others, one may notice that some writers have supposed that both Cervantes and Shakespeare died on the same day, whereas the facı is that there was ten days' dif. ference between the dates of the death of one and the other.
“ Michael de Cervantes Saavedra, the author of * Don Quixote,' died on the 23d of April, 1616, at Madrid, on Saturday, according to the New Style of wiiting dates in use at that time in Spain, which s'yle had been adopted there as early as the year 1582--(Year Letters C B, 1616, New Style, 23d of April, 1616, Saturday). And William Shakespeare died on the 230 of April, 1616, at Stratford-onAvon, on Tuesday, according to the Old Style of writing dates at that time in use in England, the Ni w Style not having been adopted in England at that time, and not until the year 1752–- (Year Letters, GF, 1616, Old Style, 23d of April, 1616, Tuesday). Saturday, 23d of April, 1616, New Style, corresponded with Saturday, 13th of April, 1616, Old Style. Tuesday, 23d of April, 1616, Old Style, corresponded with Tuesday, 3d of May, 1616, New Style. Hence it is shown that Cervantes died ten days before Shakespeare.”
Frank Rede Fowke. I think it is certain that they both died on the same day, Old Style; and the introduction of the New Style into England or Spain has nothing to do with the question. Shakespeare died on his birthday, Tuesday,
Wirt's “ British Spy.”—1 write this in the room
in which William Wirt when he penned the “British Spy," and it has occurred to me that a brief mention of the first edition of that charming work, as it came from the rude press of Samuel Pleasants, may be interesting to
before me is bound in boards and is of quarto form. It is printed on coarse paper and in double columns. 'The notes are appended at the end of the volume, and there is a slight variation in the ma't:r of some of them, as compared with that of subsequent editions. The booksellers hereabouts tell me they have never before seen such copy as this. I shall transcribe the title-page that you may compare it with the title
of the so-called just collected edition, which you will find in Morell's Catalogues of 1865 and '69.
“ The Letters of the British Spy, originally published in the Virginia Argus, in August and September, 1803. [Copy right secured). Richmond : Printed by Samuel Pleasants, Junior, 1803."
The compiler of the Morell Catalogues evidently knew nothing of the existence of this edition, or they would not have called the December edition the first coilected edition."
From the appearance of the work in my possession, I should judge it to be one of a limited number of copies struck off by the printer for the use of Wirt's friends. Its double columns and coarse paper smell of the fresh type of the old printing-room. It is certainly unique.
Unsuspected Corruptions of Shakespeare's Text.- Unlike the “ Venus and Adonis" and the “ Lucrece,” which were evidently printed from unsophisticated manuscript, and passed through the press with tolerable accuracy,
the Sonnets carry all the appearance of having been put in type from copy much damaged, and in many places illegible. This would be the natural condition of writings which had been copied and re-copied for a dozen years, as know these were, perhaps by a hundred scribes, for distribution among the author's private friends. At the same time, they do not appear to have been sent to press without examination by a qualified person. The metrical arrangement is remarkably free from error, and it would seem as if the editor had taken some pains to supply the deficiencies of the manuscript in other respects, although the endeavor, in most cases, ends in giving a mistaken or enf.ebled meaning. The character of the misprints, indeed, points to their origin. They are seldom utterly nonsensical, or absolutely unintelligible, like the blunder: of a stupid or negligent typographer, but the true expression, or what we may suppose to have been su, is superseded by another, more or less resembling it in form, but carrying a widely different signi. fication,
ARCHIBALD CONSTABLE AND HIS LITERARY CORRES
PONDENTS. A Memorial by his Son, Thomas Constable. 3 vols. Edinburgh, 1873.
We can promise the reader such a variety of interesting statements and anecdotes, and such a picture of the life led by publishers and men of letters at the beginning of the century, as will amply repay him fur the time spent in the perusal of these volumes. Indeed, the fact that Sir Walter Scott is almost as prominent a figure here as Archibald Constable himself will be to many persons a sufficient inducement to read the memorial of a man whose ability in his own occupation has rarely if ever been exceeded. Constable, indeed, seems to have been born a bookseller as much as his great client, Sir Walter, was born a poet. Lord Cockburn said truly that he “ had hardly set up for himself when he reached the summit of his business." His boldness was as remarkable as his ability, and the wise liberality he showed to authors produced splendid results. “ Abandoning the old, timid and grudging system, he stood out as the general patron and payer of all promising publications, and confounded not merely his rivals in trade but his very authors by his unheard of prices Ten, even twenty guineas, a sheet for a review, £2,000 or £3.000 for a single poem, and £1,000 each for two philosophical dissertations, drew authors from dens where they would otherwise have starved, and made Edinburgh a literary mart, famous with strangers and the pride of its own citizens.” He was a fervid Scot; the preservation of the literature of Scotland was his favorite hobby; and thus he rallied round him the best Scottish authors of the period.
In 1802 the Edinburgh Review was started by Sydney Smith, Jeffres, Horner, and others; and Constable, who was then twenty-eight years of age, became the publisher. Its success was immediate and complete, and from this time Constable's position was assured. Two years later the young man took a partner, Mr. Hunter. One of the most characteristic chapters in the book describes the convivial proceedings of Mr. Hunter, and exhibits a strange picture of the life led by Scottish gentlemen seventy years ago. Mr. Hunter was the son of a Forlarshire laird, and the county is said to have been notorious at that time for high living and hard drinking. Of this Hunter took his full share ; his very business letters rarely concluded without some report of his gastronomic or wine-bibbling feats. On one occasion he took Mr. Longman to his father's house, and, in writing to announce his illness, adds : “ These Englishers will never do in our country. They eat a great deal too much and drink too little; the consequence is their stomachs give way, and they are knocked
up of course.” Then he takes Mr. John Murray on a similar excursion, and writes : « We had a most dreadful day at Brechin Castle that day
wrote you; one of the most awful ever known, even in that house. What think you of seven of us drinking thirty-one bottles of red champagne, besides burgundy, three bottles of Madeira, &c. ? Nine bottles were drunk by us afier Maule was pounded (he had been living a terrible life for three weeks preceding), and of all this Murray contrived to take
Junius.--Supposing Sir Philip Francis to have been Junius, may not the pseudonym have been suggested to him by the title-page of the “Etymologicum Anglicanum, Francisci Junii? And may he not thus have linked the name Junius with his own name Francis ? W. L. F.
Paper Manufactured from Wood.This kind of paper, which has now been in use for some ten years, has been very largely patronized on the Continent. But the experiment has, with regard to bookwork, proved objectionable, since the beautiful whi color its surface presents (which is chemically imparted to it) is affected by light, air, and heat. In course of time, the white margin in books turns yellow, brown, or red-brown color; this has even happened to the printed surface. Its use will, therefore, have to be restricted to newspapers, pamphlets, &c., and merely ephemeral works.
upon them, and the delusion of Scott himself, who in all other respects was one of the most sagacious of men, tuok firm possession of his publishers.
REVIVAL OF BIBLIOMANIA.
his share. How he got over it God knows ; but he has since paid for it very dearly.” And he adds, “ It is curious how ill the Angus air agrees with these cockneys." Two or three days afterwards the friends had another bout, ending in the same sort of fashion, which in Hunter's opinion was, no doubt, eminently conducive to health ; for, on visiting London, he writes : “ Horrible guzzling of the Londoners and no drinking-a most unwholesome plan." The English, he considers, have no genius for dining as chey have in Scotland. “They are all much more taken up about the eating than about the drinking and fun;" and he thanks God daily that he lives in Edinburgh and not in London. Men of letters, too, in London are, he writes, “ of a very inferior caste indeed to ours of Edinburgh ;” and he is happy to find that he can keep his own with them. Hunter is “completely satisfied " that there are more Scotchmen in London than in Edinburgh, and he shows his taste, or the taste of his age, by giving a description of a prize-fight and then avowing that he considered it a much less cruel and more manly and entertaining amusement than he “could have believed possible."
There are some men-Scott, Southey, Mendelssohn, for example—of whom our high estimate grows with every increase of knowledge, This is true, aiso, of Dugald Stewart, and the slight sketch given in these pages of that amiable and accomplished man, and of his admirable wife, is very pleasing. Like many of Scott's literary contemporaries, they at once detected the poet's hand in the famous novels, and Mrs. Stewart writes that her husband read the “ Antiquary” aloud at one sitting, and that she reads " Guy Mannering" all day and dreams of it all night. The most generous hospitality was practised by Mr. and Mrs. Stewart at Kinneil, and Mr. Constable observes that to his father their house would appear to have been always open, and that he was often asked to bring some friend with him for the sake of company on the road
Mr. Constable appears to have carefully preserved his correspondence, and there are letters here whiid possess a permanent literary interest. William Godwin, Lord Jeffrey, Lord Brougham, William Roscoe, Sir James Macintosh, Captain Basil Hall, and other well-known men, contribute to the contents of the volumes, and of some of them several fine personal traits are preserved. Probably, however, and certainly in the editor's judgment, the most valuable part of the memorial is to be found in the third volume, which contains the whole history of Archibald Constable's connection with Sir Walter Scott. The narrative bears the marks of thorough truthfulness, and no one probably will read it without being convinced that many of Lockhart's statements on ihe matter are of doubtful value, and that on some points he is wilfully perverse. It is a melancholy narrative and one on which we do not care to linger. As we read it, and are made acquainted with the accommo. dition system upon which the houses of Constable & Co, and Ballantyne & Co., were carried on,
the crash that eventually destroyed both seems only a natural result. How such men as Constable and James Ballantyne could have been so deluded is extraordinary; but the spell of the Great Magician was
The rage for possessing rare and curious books which arose in Holland in the sixteenth century, and soon spread over Europe, was believed to have reached its climax in England at the close of the last and the beginning of the present century. Judging from recent events, however, it has not only been revived during the past few years, but the fever seems at the present moment to have reached an especial virulence.
A hundred years ago, as we read, manuscripts and books upon vellum were sold by eloquent auctioneers to ecstatic bibliophiles for fabulous sums, but the Perkins' sale of last year shows in its results, that a first edition with all the glories of unshorn margins can still awaken in the breast of the bibliomaniac emotions of rapturous delight. We read of men of learning, of otherwise exceptionally staid demeanor, being lifted into the seventh heaven of delight or plunged into the lowest depths of despair by the fearful sound of the auctioneer's hammer; but the feeling can hardly be extinct when we find, as at the sale referred to, a single volume being so eagerly coveted that the sum of £2,890 was paid for it. That book is now in the possession of a bookseller, Mr. Quaritch, of Piccadilly, and considering how long it may remain in his collection before a purchaser can be found who is able and willing to pay the price he places upon it, 3,000 guineas, it is certainly a very moderate one.
Bibliomania in the past has done much for Typography, and encouraged a degree of excellence which without its aid would have been impossible. this that sustained Baskerville, and led him to attain his greatest triumph-his 1762 Horace : it was this that led to the Latin classics of Foulis, of Glasgow. Bulmer's Shakespeare press was fostered by munificent patrons, who enjoyed the exquisite luxury of limited editions, magnificently illustrated and printed on white satin or vellum, and thus protected, this celcbrated printer was able boldly to challenge the world to equal his perfect typography. Under the same influence, Bensley made his great achievements in order to surpass Bulmer. Dibdin then rose, to trumpet the skill of the printers and the bounty of their patrons; and was himself well and appropriately rewarded by the luxurious edition of his own De
Bulmer and Bensley, with Bewick as the illustrator -all very busy bees, and seeking in all the fields of art for store for their precious hives-nobly fought
the Battle of the Books; and Bulmer's, Boydell aná Bensley's Bible—we must carry out the alliterationwill never be forgotten in the annals of bibliology. Of that Bible one copy was insured in a London office for £3,000, another was valued at 300 guineas, and a third was bound at an expense of £132. The fancy for fine printing extended to the throne, and George III. collected the magnificent volumes which are displayed in the British Museum. Several of his books in Great Russell street are printed on purple satin and purple vellum in letters of burnished gold, and the binding is of purple morocco lined with crimson silk, and profusely decorated in gold. The mania spread into France and even America, and one of the most interesting articles from the elegant pen of Jessie Ringwalt, of Philadelphia, describes the furore and its outcome. From that article several of the above facts are taken.
As the feeling spread, there arose, as a fungus on che oak, a love for mere fac-similes of the Early Printers, which soon degenerated, and then there came an epoch of literary forgeries, several of them being ascribed to young Ireland. About this time was produced the copy of the English Mercurie, which may be seen at the British Museum, and was accepted by Chalmers and others as an official publication of the time of Queen Elizabeth, being dated 1588. It was only in our own day that the imposture was discovered. These abuses led to the decline of bibliomania.
The word applied to the modern revival of an intense and consuming love of old and curious books is somewhat of an anachronism. Extravagant binding has not now its votaries, but the historical book is valued as much as ever. The book-lover is no longer book-mad. He pursues his peculiar bent, perhaps with the ardor of the lover, but also the feelings of the scholar. He knows the history of his coveted volume, and why it is valuable; can tell you exactly where every other copy is at the present moment contained; and what price was given for them at every sale that has ever been recorded. He may be a man given to literary research; more likely he is a shrewd man of business. Mr. Blades, the printer of Abchurch-lane, London, for instance, whose private collection of typographical works we believe to be almost unique in England, is at the head of a large establishment, and yet has found time to make himself the great Caxton authority of our time. We extract, as very pertinent to this subject, some of his remarks in a little book called “How to tell a Caxton":
"The press is, for good or evil, the greatest power in the civilized world ; and it is not too much to assert that progress of any kind would have been slow and almost impossible without its aid. · Of all countrie,
there is probably not one more indebted to the print-' ing-press, for all it holds dear, than England. No wonder then that where the English tongue is spoken and English literature prized, the first books printed in that language are surrounded with a halo that brightens, and an interest that deepens, year by year. That this interest is real, and not due to an intermittent fever of fashion, is proved by the gradual and steady rise in value of all early printed books, which at the present time are worth more than in the mania which raged in 1812 ar.d the following years* ; nor is this rise difficult to explain. The labors of our literary clubs and societies, and the numerous reprints of old authors, issued during the past few years, have created an intelligent appreciation of our early bibliographical treasures which has never before been so generally diffused.”.
“ Nor must the influence of America be overlooked. Our most successful black-letter' opponents in the sale-rooms and book-marts of Europe, were for many years Americans or their agents; and, although the war for a time diverted the flow of capital in that direction, the old feeling is resuming its sway, and the relics of early English literature are again being sought for by an ever-increasing body of intelligent book-lovers.”
The splendid collection of early productions of the printing-press which is possessed by Mr. Bernard Quaritch, of Piccadilly,—a collection which for value, extent and intrinsic interest is absolutely unique-has been the subject of a very scholarly article in the New York Sun. We regret that our space is inadequate to the presentation even of a mere epitome of this article, and that our readers cannot be introduced to the mysteries of the bibliognostes, the bibliomanes, the bibliophiles and the bibliotaphes. The writer thus regards Mr. Quaritch as “one of the most learned and intelligent of living bibliographers." In regard to Mr. Quaritch's catalogue, the writer appreciatively says :
“ It reads like a chapter from Dibdin or Brunet. It is, in fact, to a certain extent, a treatise on old books from a bibliographical point of view. With one or two notable exceptions it recapitulates the works still extant of the chief printers of Germany, the Netherlands, France, Italy, England, Spain and Portugal, produced during the first century and a half succeedir:g the invention of printing, and is enriched with notes and comments upon the condition, rarity and commercial value of the more important books. The price being also added in each instance, the reader can take in at a glance what collectors have
done, and what they are prepared tu do, in the gratification of their passion for buying old books."
At the conclusion of the article, however, is an allusion to Mr. Quaritch, to which he has replied in the characteristic letter which we print below :
To the Editor of “ The Sun, " New York, U. S. A. :
Sir,-An excellent article upon “ Some Old Books," which appeared in your issue of December 6th, has been read by me with interest. Towards my catalogue and the magnificent collection of books of which I am proud to be the possessor, the writer exhibits complete fairness and that genuine sympathy or appreciation which marks the true bibliophile, and which is an uncommon quality in America as well as in Europe. But while he loves the books, he seems to entertain a different feeling for their owner, against whom a serious charge is preferred in the final paragraph of the article The Parthian shot has caused me pain, especially as I consider myself of all men the one least liable to such an attack. It is untrue that “another peculiarity of Mr. Quaritch is an intense dislike of the United States, which he is said to take pleasure in exhibiting to Americans visiting his shop in Piccadilly.” I cannot conceive the origin of a statement so opposed to the fact; simple misapprehension seems hardly sufficient to account for it. I fear that my critic's informant must have spoken with malice prepense; for, although I meet with dislike and prejudice in many quarters, I should never expect them from the other side of the Atlantic. Indeed, a “ peculiarity" for which I am noted—and not always charitably noted - is a proneness to give warmer welcome to visitors from the United States than to most others. I try to make my house a regular place of call and centre of interest for Americans in London, and I believe that no one from the States, who has entered my “shop in Piccadilly,” is unaware of the fact. This conduct is nit dictated by any special predilection for people who happen to have been born in the lands between the Atlantic and Pac,fic, but because I believe the Great Republic is heir of a marvellous future, and that her children will predominate amongst the inhabitants of a renovated world. To scatter the seeds of enlightenment and civilization wherever they will grow is the duty of every man, and this object is reached in many ways. The dissemination of good books, books of intrinsic and lasting value, particularly when it is done in the way of commerce, is one of the most valuable aids to this noble end; and I think that I perform my own share of duty in bestowing special cultivation upon the soil that seems most fertile, which is undoubtedly the United States. It is unnecessary to ascend the heights of sentiment and declaim about lofty purposes and fine philanthropy; one can do much better and take a
more rational place in the world by the simple process of buying and selling what is useful or good. And in the matter of good books, the bibliophile who pays for his treasure : enjoys them far more than he to whom they have been bequeathed or presented.
I have thought it necessary to express and explain in the preceding paragraph my exact sentiments concerning the citizens of the United States, not wishing, however, to run counter to the broad cosmopolitan
principle by which the barriers are broken down that usually separate the better men of every race, for I am happily superior to that vulgar prejudice called patriotism and nationality. But now 1 desire to reverse the picture, and to express my reprobation for the system of vexatious duties by which the government of the United States so lately endeavored to restrict the importation of books. I, who am an old free-trader, imagine that the imposition of such taxes, even upon the new publications of England, is a shortsighted policy and injurious in the end; but I cannot conceive that any, except ignorant people, would deem it right to charge a penalty upon the acquisition of old books, the tested metal of ages, which has been weighed in the balance and not found wanting. It would be as wise to place a tax upon the sunshine, or the water from natural fountains. The entire country derives a benefit, directly and indirectly, from the acquirement by individuals of rare and valuable old books, and their importation ought to be encouraged, not discouraged, by the State. Yet it is only within the last couple of years that the impost upon them has been remitted. This is an opinion I have frequently expressed to Americans, but it does not seem sufficient to account for the article writer's mistake concerning another “peculiarity of Mr. Quaritch."
Apologizing for the length of the above remarks upon a matter so personal, I beg now to refer to what your article treated as a serious omission in my catalogue. The publications of the Elzevirs could find no place in a list which was devoted in the specimens of early printing in all countries; and for a similar reason the books of the Estiennes had to be excluded, although a few of the publications of Henry Estienne the First, the founder of the famous Stephanus Press, were permitted to appear.
In the matter of English books I have allowed myself a wider latitude; the efforts of typography in England having for a long time been almost entirely confined to the metropolis, and books in the venacular printed here, even down to the time of the first folio Shakespeare, being of greater interest and considerably scarcer than contemporary publications on the continent, I have relaxed the rigid rules of exclusion and admitted some guests who had come too late. As for the Aldine series, which had its commencement in the fifteenth century, no comparison can exist between it and the other two as regarded the point of view adopted in my catalogue.
In other respects I consider that your article was correctly and conscientiously written, displaying equal judiciousness and learning on the part of its author.
Trusting that you will allow me to disabuse the same public whom he addressed, concerning the stigma erroneously (though no doubt in good faith) imposed upon me by him, I am, sir, your obedient servant,
BERNARD QUARITCH. 15 Piccadilly, London, 27th December, 1873.
OUR OLD BOOK STORES.
[From the V. Y. Evening Mail.] Where is the lover of books that would not like to take an occasional ramble among the old book stores