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Stories Before 1850. 0049: Jonathan Swift, The Adventures of Captain Gulliver in a voyage to Lilliput

Author: Swift, Jonathan (abridged from)
Title: The adventures of Captain Gulliver in a voyage to Lilliput
Cat. Number: 0049
Date: 1815
1st Edition:
Pub. Place: Glasgow
Publisher: Lumsden and Son
Price: 2d
Pages: 1 vol.,47 pp.
Size: 10 x 6 cm
Illustrations: Frontispiece plus seven further wood-cuts and a reversible vignette on outside back cover

Images of all pages of this book

Page 002 of item 0049

Introductory essay

The edition of Gulliver which appears here was published by J. Lumsden and Son in Glasgow, as are a number of other books in the Hockliffe Collection (0008, 0115, 0139, 0187). Little is known about the company, but it seems to have produced books from the 1790s through to the 1840s, while continuing to be primarily an engraving, stationery and printing firm. The lack of advertisments for Lumsden books, and the rarity of surving copies, suggest that only a small number of copies were printed, and that they were seldom distributed beyond Scotland and the north of England. However, Lumsden's production values were high, and they are characterised by the multi-coloured type and reversible heads (such as that on the outside back cover, and reversed) which appear in The adventures of Captain Gulliver. Illustrations to Lumsden texts have sometimes been attributed to the celebrated engraver Thomas Bewick. Roscoe and Brimmell, in their study of the firm, think this unlikely, although they do suggest that Bewick's workshop may have been responsible (Roscoe and Brimmell, 1981).

Roscoe, S., and Brimmell, R. A., James Lumsden and Son of Glasgow. Their Juvenile Books and Chapbooks, Pinner, Middx.: Private Libraries Association, 1981