“So much, only begging
you to tear out the cuts and give them to
Johnny, as ‘Mrs. Godwin’s fancy’.
“Our love to all.
“I had almost forgot,
My part of the Preface begins in the middle
of a sentence, in last but one page, after a colon, thus:—
if they be happily so done, &c. (see page 2, line
The former part hath a more
feminine turn and does hold me up
something as an instructor to young ladies: but upon my modesty’s
honour I wrote it not.
“Godwin told my Sister
that the Baby chose the subjects: a fact in
This letter not only tells us how the preface was written—the first part, I take it, by William Godwin—but what Lamb himself thought of the pictures; which I reproduce in the large edition. It is customary to attribute the designs to Mulready and the engraving to William Blake.
I have set up the Tales from the second edition, 1809, because it embodies certain corrections and was probably the last edition in which the Lambs took any interest. The changes of word are few. I note the more important; Page 5, line 1, “recollection” was “remembrance” in the first edition; page 10, line 27, “voracious” was “ugly” in the first edition; page 15, line 21, “vessel” was “churn”; page 42, line 30, “continued” was in the first edition “remained”; page 108, foot, “But she being a woman” had run in the first edition, “But she being a bad ambitious woman.” I leave other minute differences to the Bibliographer.
The second edition was issued in two forms: one similar to the first edition and one with only frontispiece, a portrait of Shakespear, and the following foreword from the pen, I imagine, of Mr. Godwin:—