This authoritative text is reprinted from the Library of America edition of Novels by Edith Wharton, and is based on the sixth impression of the first edition
, which incorporates the last set of extensive revisions that are obviously authorial.
I have stated in the preface to the first Edition
of this work, and in the Zoology of the Voyage of the Beagle, that it was in consequence of a wish expressed by Captain Fitz Roy, of having some scientific person on board, accompanied by an offer from him of giving up part of his own accommodations, that I volunteered my services, which received, through the kindness of the hydrographer, Captain Beaufort, the sanction of the Lords of the Admiralty.
It is scarcely the province of an author to refute the arguments of his censors and vindicate his own productions; but I may be allowed to make here a few observations with which I would have prefaced the first edition
, had I foreseen the necessity of such precautions against the misapprehensions of those who would read it with a prejudiced mind or be content to judge it by a hasty glance.
The Signet Classic text is based on the first edition
, published by John Murray, London, in 1818 -- the year following Miss Austen's death.
In Wordsworth's prefatory advertisement to the first edition
of The Prelude, published in 1850, it is stated that that work was intended to be introductory to The Recluse: and that The Recluse, if completed, would have consisted of three parts.
I have a quarto Shakespeare, I think," he said, "that I marked at Sotheby's, also a manuscript Thomas a Kempis, and a first edition
Of course, it should be added, the English language has vastly expanded since his time, and Johnson's first edition
contained only a tithe of the 400,000 words recorded in the latest edition of Webster (1910).
The end of the alley was blocked by a one-story brick building, out of which issued the rhythmic thunder of the presses, running off the first edition
of the ENQUIRER.
I print at my own risk," said the author, "and I expect to make a thousand ducats at least by this first edition
, which is to be of two thousand copies that will go off in a twinkling at six reals apiece.
This is a copy of the first edition
of the poems," she continued, without considering the fact that Mr.
Especially interesting are fifteen or twenty first editions
of Hawthorne's books inscribed to Mr.
There was a desk for his secretary, now vacant, and beyond, in the shadows of the apartment, winged bookcases which held a collection of editions de luxe, first editions
, and a great collection of German and Russian literature, admittedly unique.