Monday, 22 June 2009

Haywood Bibliography Note 2

Another recent Haywood purchase provides the basis of this note. In this case I was lucky enough to obtain a copy of the first edition of Haywood's The Distress'd Orphan: Or Love in a Mad-House (1726). There are three issues of this edition: a first, "second," and "third" [Ab.30.1a–c], all of which are uncommon. There are only nine copies of the three issues listed in my Bibliography, the University of Chicago copy still being missing, and this copy, making a tenth.

My copy differs from the ones that I have seen before in having a half-title (above), which means I have had to update the three entries. It is, however, missing its title-leaf. And since a copy of the title leaf survives all by itself in the British Library, in a massive collection of title pages, you have to wonder whether this was the copy mutilated by Joseph Ames.

Joseph Ames collected 7,425 title-pages of books printed before 1749. Ames was not as bad a biblioclast (a destroyer of books) as many people seem to think he was. In the eighteenth-century, printers, publishers and booksellers used to advertise new publications by sticking up on walls and posts copies of the titles pages of new books. Printers would print off extra copies for this purpose, sometimes changing and adding bits to the title-page—making little advertising posters of them—so that they would work better as promos. Ames collected these title-page adverts as well as title-pages ripped out of books, as well as printing proposals and other printing ephemera.

Anyway, Ames's collection is in six massive volumes. And they are not indexed. So, in 1995, I went through all these volumes of the Ames's collection on the off-chance that I might find title-pages, title-page posters, or printing proposals for works by Haywood. I found only one, and it is the one I have mentioned: for the first issue of the first edition of The Distress'd Orphan. At the time, I had been unable to locate any copy of the this first issue. I had seen the facsimile of the second, and the microfilm of the third, but the first was "lost." I was so excited by my discovery that I paid a small fortune to get an A3 copy of this title-page made! (Fortunately—or sadly, depending on your perspective—I subsequently located three complete copies: at Yale, Cornell University and the University of Pennsylvania.)

Since my copy has no title-leaf I don't really know what issue it is, but I have decided to list it under the first: Ab.30.1a. There is as much justification for listing it there as the following two entries, and I think it belongs with the Ames title-page.

One final note. I have used the headpiece from the first page of text of The Distress'd Orphan (above) as a header for this blog. The ornament belonged to Henry Woodfall, but you can see that I have made a few changes. I have also made a few changes to the layout of this blog, and will make some more next week. But for now: FINIS.

[UPDATE: 2 July 2016: After all my pictures disappeared (again) I decided to give up on external hosts for large versions (1000px) of my image files and, for now on, will stick with the smaller images (500px), which Blogger is prepared to host.]

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