Comments on front-cover design variations of Professor Hoffmann’s “Bridge Whist” and “Bridge”

As a follow-up to my recent post regarding David Levy’s example of an 1895 edition of Bridge Whist, by Professor Hoffmann, published by Goodall, I am writing this post about certain cover-variations the work went through, mainly after the title changed to Bridge (apparently in 1903).

I have said before that I consider Bridge to be a separate work from Bridge Whist, and I discussed that concept at some length.  But there is an undeniable connection between the two, and as I have also said, it is possible to consider them different versions of the same work.  By the way, the text was not the same in all editions of Bridge.

This is not an effort to deal with every possible cover variation, but it does reflect (I hope) all of the different front-cover designs for examples of those books in my collection.

I am mainly dealing with cover designs in the sense of basic background color and wording, and not as to the fundamental design, which is the same on all of the covers shown (except for the first one).  Also, I am not dealing with the materials out of which the covers were made (it was not the same in all cases–different weights and finishes were used).

Before showing the scans, I will briefly outline the editions represented and describe some of the principal features or differences.

1901:  Bridge Whist (both the cover and the title page show Bridge Whist); cover shows 1902; title page shows 1901.

1903:  Ninth Edition, cover title Bridge Whist.

1903:  Ninth Edition, cover title Bridge.  Other than the differences in cover titles, this booklet appears (on superficial examination) to be identical to the preceding one.

1905:  Thirteenth Edition, November, 1905,  pale blue.

1908:  Sixteenth Edition, April, 1908, deep purple.

1911:  Nineteenth Edition, off-white, drops the “(REVISED & ENLARGED)” language from under the author’s name.

1917:  Twenty-Ninth Edition, shows Hoffmann’s real name and pen name.

1919:  Thirty-Third Edition, pale blue, shows author’s real name and pen name, and does not show the price.

The foregoing does not address all of the features and differences, but it gives a good idea of the main points.

I have other copies of Bridge in my collection, but the covers are generally the same as one of the ones listed above.  Where I have more than one copy with same cover design, I have tried to list the earlier (or earliest) copy with that design.

The scans are only approximations of what the actual covers look like.  The originals look nicer, especially the ones with the purple covers.

First is the front cover of a copy of Bridge Whist.  The front cover shows 1902, while the title page shows 1901.


Next, below, is the cover of a 1903 edition of Bridge, which has the cover title Bridge Whist.  The title page shows Bridge.


Next, below, is another Ninth Edition, 1903, with the cover title of Bridge.


Next, below, is a Thirteenth Edition, November, 1905, with light-colored cover.


Next, below, is a Sixteenth Edition, April, 1908.  This cover is a deep purple, significantly darker than the other purple covers shown above.  Somehow, though, that fact does not come across in the scan as shown.


Next, below, is a Nineteenth Edition, 1911, which drops the text after the author’s name.


Next, below, is a Twenty-Ninth Edition, 1917, showing Hoffmann’s real name and pen name.


Next, below, is a Thirty-Third Edition, 1919, showing Hoffmann’s real name and pen name, and without mention of a price.


And that completes the present discussion.

[This post was revised on August 8, 2011.]

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