Comments on “Whist for All Players,” by Captain Crawley–Part 2: Notes on a typical later edition . . .

Preliminary Note:

I want to start out by saying that–usually, in this blog–when I speak of “editions” I am really referring to printings, which may or may not contain revisions.  A bibliographer would normally not consider a book to be a separate edition unless the type was newly set.  Sometimes the complications involved in determining whether a book is part of a separate edition can be quite involved.  Even using the term “printing” is not always such a great idea.

The concept of “issues” normally has to do with subsets of “editions,” where the members of the subset are intended by the publisher to be released as a separate batch.  So, if a publisher bound part of an edition in a special binding, with all copies signed by the author, and delayed release of the copies until Christmas, and charged a higher price, well that would pretty clearly be a separate issue.  That is probably a simplification.  In the case of card-game booklets, when the cover or title page (or both) change, but the text stays the same, that probably is enough to create a separate issue, and most of the “printings” of card-game booklets are possibly separate issues of an edition, if the type has not been reset.

But for the sake of shorthand, I basically adopt the publisher’s nomenclature for purposes of this blog–and that tends toward liberal use of the term “edition.”  I wrote the foregoing without reference to anything, and some nuances may be lacking.  I don’t deal with such problems much, so the foregoing is probably not the best description of the picture.

End of Preliminary Note.

Captain Crawley’s Whist for All Players went through many editions.  An unnumbered edition is pictured below.  It appeared many years after the “Fifteenth Edition,” of 1902.  I don’t consider Whist for All Players to be particularly scarce (if one is not particular about the edition).  I think I have at least five editions.  However, I suspect that early editions are very scarce.  I don’t think I have ever heard of any pre-1902 edition being offered for sale.

I have never seen any edition of the booklet that was not revised by Rawdon Crawley.

According to Frederic Boase’s Modern English Biography, Volume II, 1897, the dates for the two writers are as follows:

George Frederick Pardon, 1824-1884

Charles Frederick Pardon, 1850-1890 

Boase also gives locations of portraits, two for Charles and one for George.

Below is pictured the front cover of a [1919] edition of the booklet.  (By the way, in this blog, if I place a date in brackets, that means that the date does not appear in the normal way on the title page, for example, 1919.)

The booklet pictured above was discussed briefly in an earlier post on this blog.  I quote (I have placed the quotation in boldface):

Additionally, I have a copy of Whist for All Players, by Captain Crawley, A New Edition, which also has printing information.  It was revised by Captain Crawley’s son, Rawdon Crawley, Bart.  (This presumably would be George Frederick Pardon and Charles Frederick Pardon.) The information in that booklet is as follows:


So, that printing consisted of a mere 1,000 copies.  I have two other copies of that Whist booklet that do not have any similar information.

The “obvious” interpretation of the code quoted is “1,ooo copies, November 1919.”

I want to mention a couple of other things about the booklet.  It has 27 pages, not including preliminaries, and page 27 is followed by five pages of advertisements.  The 27 pages of text (and the preliminaries) are the same number of pages as found in a 1902 edition and in a 1903 edition. My supposition is that Rawdon Crawley revised the book once, and that was it.  I don’t know that as a fact, however.  The booklet pictured above is printed in black ink only.  All edges are gilt on the booklet pictured above.

—Tom Sawyer

October 25, 2012

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