My recent essays have strayed from pure bibliography, touching on such questions as how the history of copyright law affected the Hoyle canon and how Hoyle's writing was received in contemporary England. This and the next several essays will return to bibliography, leading to the difficult question of how to treat collected editions of Hoyle. First, I will discuss the early separately published works of Hoyle.
Below, I present a complete list of Hoyle's works published by Francis Cogan, plus the first edition of Whist, which Hoyle published himself. I refer to the books by the game covered—if you want to see the full title, click through to the English Short Title Catalogue entry for each listing. [Aside: ESTC is a fantastic resource providing much detail about books printed in the British Isles and North America between 1473 and 1800.]
After the game, the first number indicates edition and the second number indicates issue (omitted if there is only one issue). I have discussed both terms in earlier essays. An edition refers to all books printed substantially from the same setting of type. An issue is a portion of an edition marketed as a different book generally with a new title page.
- Whist.1.1: London: printed by John Watts for the author, 1742, entered at Stationers Hall in the name of Hoyle November 17, 1742.
- Whist.1.2: The “second” edition, 1743 (advertised March 5, 1743)
- Whist.2: The second edition, 1743 (advertised March 4, 1743)
- Whist.3: The third edition, 1743 (advertised March 18, 1743)
- Whist.4: The fourth edition, 1743 (advertised June 29, 1743)
- Whist.5: The fifth edition, 1744.
- Laws.1: [no copies survive], 1743 (advertised March 5, 1743)
- Backgammon.1: 1743 (entered at Stationers Hall in the names of Hoyle and Cogan June 28, 1743 and advertised June 29, 1743)
- Memory.1: 1744 (advertised November 17, 1743)
- Piquet.1.1: 1744 (entered at Stationers hall in the names of Hoyle and Cogan January 11, 1743/4 and advertised January 12, 1744)
- Quadrille.1.1: 1744 (advertised October 13, 1744)
The second comment leads to a longer discussion. The careful reader of my previous essays may have noticed that when I refer to the edition stated on the title page of a book, I tend to put the edition in quotation marks. The reason is that the stated edition is not necessarily accurate from the point of view of a bibliographer. This essay will discuss the two different whist treatises that are both stated "second" editions, Whist.1.2 and Whist.2.
How do we recognize these as distinct books? There are no obvious textual differences. At first glance, the page numbering of both looks strange, but identical. Both books have pages numbered 2-86, page 1 being unnumbered. Between pages 10 and 11, both books have six extra pages numbered *5 through *10. Looking more carefully, one notes that Whist.2 has four preliminary, unnumbered leaves; Whist.1.2 has five and an extra blank leaf at the end. The extra leaf in Whist.1.2, pictured below at left is hugely significant. It is the first book to be autographed by Hoyle.
(click to enlarge)
The difference in the two books is most apparent from the collation formula, a coded description of a physical book. For a good introductory explanation of the collation formula, I recommend this post in the new blog from the Folger Library called, not coincidentally, The Collation.
The formula for Whist.2 is quite straightforward. 12o: A–H6 I2. The format is duodecimo (12o), meaning that each printed sheet has twelve leaves or 24 pages. Many pages have signature marks such as A or B2 at the bottom. Looking at these, together with evidence of the binder's sewing, we see that the book is made up of six-leaf sections, called gatherings, labeled A through H. The final gathering labeled I has only two leaves. Each twelve leaf sheet was cut to make two six-leaf gatherings. You can see how each sheet might have been set up on the press in diagrams 27, 28, and 29 here. The nine gatherings would be sewn together by the binder.
The formula for Whist.1.2 is much more complicated: 12o: A6 (A2+'A2') B6 χ2 (χ2+5) C-D12 E8. Again we have a duodecimo with the first two gatherings A and B again in sixes. Note that there is an inserted leaf signed 'A2' inserted after A2. Then there is an unsigned two-leaf gathering—bibliographers use the Greek chi for a gathering in the middle of a book with no signature mark—with five leaves inserted afterward. Then the book becomes regular—C and D are normal twelve-leaf gatherings, and a short eight-leaf gathering E at the end.Why would anyone make such a crazy book?
The answer, discussed more fully in my article, has to do with Cogan's response pirated versions of whist appearing in February 1743. On March 4, Cogan advertised a second edition "with great additions." The additions all appear in the beginning of the book and explain why there are inserted page numbers in between pages 10 and 11. The next day, Cogan advertised:
The Purchasers of the first Edition may have the Additions to complete their Books, on producing that bought of the Author, and paying one Shilling.Whist.1.2 is what happens when the owner of the first edition took Cogan up on the author. The first edition has the straightforward collation formula 12o: A4 B-D12 E8. To make up Whist.1.2, the A gathering was removed (setting aside the second leaf A2). The first five pages of the B gathering were removed. A new sheet was printed with new gatherings A and B and those were added to the beginning of the book. The preserved leaf A2 was pasted in after A2 in the new gathering.The means that the seven leaves χ2 (χ2+5) from Whist.1.2 were originally leaves B6-B12 in Whist..11.
Technical bibliography aside, we have evidence of a monumental tragedy here! Some people who owned copies of the first edition in its elegant deluxe binding (discussed and pictured here) had the book taken apart, the binding lost forever. Cogan added the new material and rebound the book much more modestly. I believe the Beinecke Library copy of Whist.1.2, digitized here, has a Cogan publisher's binding—I've seen a number of Cogan Hoyles in similar paper wraps. Quite a difference and quite a loss!
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