[ModLib] G18 Revisited

Gordon Barrick Neavill neavill at wayne.edu
Sun Mar 25 18:46:11 EDT 2012

Practitioners of descriptive bibliography, myself included, have always distinguished typesettings.  Indeed, bibliographers define editions in terms of typesettings.  A new typesetting equals a new edition.  In bibliographical terms, the two typesettings of G18 costitute two separate editions.  There are LOTS of ML titles that exist in more than one typesetting, without substantive changes such as corrections, revisions, the addition of a new introduction, etc.  There are two typesettings of the Eleanor Marx Aveling translation of Madame Bovary, for example, and the Steegmuller translation adds a third.  Most collectors  distinguish the Aveling and Steegmuller translations.  Toledano distinguises printings of the Aveling translation with and without the Peyre introduction and the Steegmuller translation as 28.1, 28.2, and 28.3. 117.1-2 are Wilde's De Profundis and Fitgerald's Great Gatsby; 117.3-4 are Fielding's Joseph Andrews wit hout the bibliography following Jones's introduction and with the bibliography.  This system isn't perfect, but it seems to work well enough for most collectors. 

Having said this, the numbering system of my forthcoming bibliographical study of the ML is  based on chronology and clearly distinguishes editions in the bibliographical sense . T he 642 titles in the regular ML published between 1917 and 1985 are  numbered 1-642, beginning with Wilde's Dorian Gray (1917) and ending with Twain's Huckleberry Finn (642).  The one  "reissue"  that appeared later is the  1986 printing of Lawrence's Sons and Lovers with the woodcut illustration by Stephen Alcorn on the jacket and at the beginning of the book -- but this is numbered 99.3c and is included with other ML printings of Sons and Lovers.  So ns and Lovers was the 99th title added to the ML, and it exisits in three typesettings (99.1, 99.2, and 99.3) .  These are further subdivided into seven "families" of printings as follows: 99.1a, first printing with B&L title page; 99.1b with the ML, Inc. title page; 99.2a (1933) printed from a new typesetting; 99.2b Blu menthal format with title page reset (around 1941); 99.3a printed from a new typesetting (1962) w. 420 pp.; 99.3b, first "reissue" format; and 99.3c, second reissue format with Alcorn woodcut.  There were an unknown number of printings in each "family" though I suspect that 99.3 c probably exists in a single printing. 

Four American publishers brought out printings of Sons and Lovers before it appeared in the ML -- Mitchell Kennerly,  1913; Thomas Seltzer, 1923; A. & C. Boni; and Viking Press.  The ML "edition"  appeared in spring 1923.  There were an unknown number of printings of 99.1 by the ML  between 1923 and 1933, when the ML ordered a new typesetting.  In bibliographical terms, the first 20 years of printings by five different publishers (including the ML), all from the same plates, consitute the first edition.  Collectors, of course, consider the first American edition to be the first Mitchell Kennerly printing and would complain if they received a copy of the  ML reprint in response to an order for the  "first edition". 

I think the numbering system used by Toledano, Scott's website, and most collectors works well, despite its failure to distinguish typesettings.  My bibliography should be available within the next 18 months or so, and then we can work on a "crosswalk" between the two numbering systems. 


----- Original Message -----

From: "Bill Hornick" <willthemad at aol.com> 
To: kamins at modernlib.com 
Sent: Sunday, March 25, 2012 12:11:55 PM 
Subject: [ModLib] G18 Revisited 


This merits discussion. PLEASE comment!!!! 

-- Scot Kamins 

Dear Scot, 
About a year or so ago the ML website hosted a discussion on whether or not G18 warranted two Toledano numbers, one for the original edition with broken pagination and one for the later edition with continuous pagination.  The result was that no new identifcation number was added.  At that time I had only the latter continuous-pagination edition (and also lacked the Regular 18.2 Best Russian Short Stories title).  I have since acquired a first edition of G18.1 (G3 binding, 236 titles on dj verso) and a copy of 18.2 Best Russian Short Stories. 
After comparing 18.2 and 18.3 and G18.1 (hereinafter called G18A) and the later edition (hereinafter called G18B), I will argue that precedent and consistency warrant two different numbers for G18 based on the following points: 
1. 18.2 and 18.3 both have the same content on the title page with slightly different graphics. 
    G18A and G18B both have the same title page but Cerf and Klopper are removed from the line above The Modern Library. 
    In addition, G18A has a list of Giant tiles (G1-G17) on the verso of the title page while G18B contains the RH logo and wording 
    and The Everyman's Library credit. 
2. 18.2 and 18.3 have the same Seltzer introduction; in 18.2 it covers pp. vii to xix and in 18.3 it covers pp. vii to xvi. 
    G18A and G18B have the same Mencken introduction; in G18A in covers pp. v to xii before the Table of Contents and in G18B 
    it covers pp. vii to xiv after the Table of Contents. 
3. 18.2 and 18.3 both have the same 22 short stories, but the arrangement order differs. 
    G18A and G18B both have the same 11 plays, but the arrangement order differs. 
4. 18.2 has broken pagination from the original plates: 1 to 261 and 1 to 231; 18.3 has reset plates with continuous pagination 
    from 3 to 556. 
    G18A has broken pagination from the original plates: 3 to 305, 8 to 330 and 3 to 482; G18B has continuous pagination from 
    3 to 1185. 
5. 18.2 has list of Regular and Giant titles in the textblock at the end on unnumbered pages; 18.3 has no textblock list of titles. 
    G18A has a list of Giant titles on the verso of the title page; G18B has no textblock list of titles. 
Conclusion: If 18.2 and 18.3 warrant different Toledano numbers and if G18A and G18B parallel those differences and actually have more differences than do 18.2 and 18.3, then based on precedent and consistency G18A and G18B also warrant different Toledano numbers. 
If not, it is logical to delist 18.3 for its differences from 18.2. 
If you wish to post this email to the ML website, please feel free to do so.  I welcome your and others' comments.  Let us all appreciate the coincidence, and possible confusion, that both the Regular and the Giant compared titles are number 18. 
With all best regards, 
Bill Hornick 

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Gordon B. Neavill 
Associate Professor 
School of Library and Information Science 
Wayne State University 
106 Kresge Library 
Detroit, MI 48202 
313-577-0507; 313-577-7563 (fax) 

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