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HOGARTH PRESS: COMMERCIAL PUBLICATIONS

The commercial publications of the Hogarth Press also bear the unique stamp of the owners. As with the handprinted books, these commercially produced imprints include works by themselves, the Bloomsbury Group, and others they wished to promote, and covered the wide range of subjects that were of interest to the Woolfs.

Among their own works which they had printed commercially were Virginia's To the Lighthouse (1927) and A Room of One's Own (1929), and Leonard's essay, Fear and Politics (1925), and his play, The Hotel (1939). Other notable works published commercially by the Woolfs include Edwin Muir's first book, First Poems (1925), William Plomer's Sado (1931), and Christopher Isherwood's Sally Bowles (1937). Also included among the commercial works in the Special Collections Department are the only known copy of the "First Proof" of Harold Nicolson's Jeanne de Hénaut (1924), with the author's name misspelled; and a review copy of Geoffrey Phibbs's The Withering of the Fig Leaf (1927), which the author persuaded Leonard Woolf to suppress because of its anti-Catholic tone, with a letter requesting that no review be submitted.

As small, independent publishers, the Woolfs had more freedom than larger, commercial firms to publish what and whom they liked and to maintain quality in their selections. The Press also provided the Woolfs with what most authors only dream of -- control over the publisher. This was especially important for Virginia, allowing her to experiment as she pleased. With technical support provided by commercial printers, the Woolfs were able to sustain their personal publishing program with remarkable consistency. The Hogarth Press, viewed from the perspective of this anniversary exhibit, is a unique and significant part of twentieth-century literary, artistic and cultural life.


Jeanne de Henaut HAROLD NICOLSON.
Jeanne de Henaut. 1924.
55 copies printed. This copy has the printer's "First Proof" stamp and the date "8 Nov. 1924" on the front cover. The author's name is spelled "Nicholson" on the proof, but this was corrected before publication. This is the only known copy of the First Proof.

EDWIN MUIR.
First Poems. 1925.
This is Edwin Muir's first book.

"I look back on this forty year's connection with Edwin Muir with great pleasure and some sadness. We printed his poems in 1925 . . . and he was the kind of author and they were the kind of poems for whom and which we wanted the Press to exist. . . . the sadness comes from a feeling that life dealt rather hardly with him."
Leonard Woolf, Downhill All the Way (1967).


LEONARD WOOLF.
Fear and Politics. 1925.
The Hogarth Essays, First Series, No. 7
Mrs. Dalloway . VIRGINIA WOOLF.
Mrs. Dalloway. 1925.
Jacket designed by Vanessa Bell.
"But hush, hush -- my books tremble on the verge of coming out, & my future is uncertain. As for forecasts -- its [sic] just on the cards Mrs Dalloway is a success . . . & sells 2,000 -- I dont [sic] expect it. . . ."
Virginia Woolf, from her diary entry for April 19, 1925.

JOHN MAYNARD KEYNES.
The End of Laissez-Faire. 1926.

"I ought to have written to you before. . . . We have been in rather a rush, though, bringing out a book of Maynard Keynes'."
Virginia Woolf to Violet Dickinson, July 26, 1926.


Withering of the Fig Leaf GEOFFREY PHIBBS.
Withering of the Fig Leaf. 1927.
Displayed with the book is a letter from the Secretary of The Hogarth Press to the Literary Editor of the Dundee Advertiser requesting that a review of Withering of the Fig Leaf not be published since the book was withdrawn from publication.
Because of the anti-Catholic tone of Phibbs' poems, he was warned by some of his friends, including George Russell ("A. E."), that if they were published he would be in danger of losing his job as a Carnegie librarian, an institution that was regarded with deep suspicion by the Roman Catholic church in Ireland. Phibbs therefore persuaded Leonard Woolf to suppress the book at the last minute.

VIRGINIA WOOLF.
To The Lighthouse. 1927.
Jacket designed by Vanessa Bell.
"Book out. We have sold (I think) 1690 before publication - twice Dalloway. I write however in the shadow of the damp cloud of the Times Lit[.] Sup. [Times Literary Supplement] review, . . . leaving me moderately depressed. . . . Yet, honestly don't much care; want to be let alone to ruminate."
Virginia Woolf, from her diary entry for May 5 1927.
VIRGINIA WOOLF.
Orlando. 1928.

"And instantly the usual exciting devices enter my mind: a biography beginning in the year 1500 & continuing to the present day, called Orlando: Vita; only with a change about from one sex to another."
Virginia Woolf, from her diary entry for October 5, 1927.

"But listen; suppose Orlando turns out to be Vita; and its [sic] all about you and the lusts of your flesh and the lure of your mind. . . . Shall you mind?"
Virginia Woolf to Vita Sackville-West, October 9, 1927.


SYLVA NORMAN.
Nature Has No Tune. 1929.

"Julian [Bell] dines with us tonight to meet Miss Sylva Norman whom I fetched up from complete nonentity on the telephone last night. Another marvel of science. There she was in 10 minutes after we thought of her saying she would LOVE to come. . . . They will dine with us; & that is what I am ripe for - to go adventuring on the streams of other peoples [sic] lives - speculating, adrift[.]"
Virginia Woolf, from her diary entry for June 20, 1928.


VIRGINIA WOOLF.
A Room of One's Own. 1929.
First trade edition. Jacket designed by Vanessa Bell.

"By the way, the sales of A Room are unprecedented - have beaten Orlando; feels like a line running through ones [sic] fingers; orders for 100 taken as coolly as 12's used to be. We have sold, I think 5500; & our next years [sic] income is made."
Virginia Woolf, from her diary entry for December 14, 1929.


Sado WILLIAM PLOMER.
Sado. 1931.
Jacket designed by John Armstrong.

"William Plomer was one of the new acquaintances I made in London through the Press, and it was not long before we became close friends. . . . We published his novel, Sado, during that first spring, and I found some- thing in it that deeply attracted me. . . . among my first jobs was the preparation of publicity for Sado."
John Lehmann, Thrown to the Woolfs (1978).


E. J. LANGFORD GARSTIN and HUGH J.SCHONFIELD (eds.).
The Search, A Quarterly Review. Volume 1, Number 1. January, 1931.

Only four issues of The Search were published between January and October 1931 (Volume 1, Numbers 1-4). The relationship between the editors and Leonard Woolf was not smooth and the Hogarth Press published only the first two issues.
"The Search aims at presenting its readers, in form as readily assimilable as possible, with the researches and conclusions of modern scholarship in the domains of Religion, Philosophy, Science, Literature and Art." From inside front cover.


LEONARD WOOLF.
Quack, Quack! 1935.

"Leonard has just finished his book, called Quack Quack which will be out in June. I expect it will get him into hot water with all classes, as it is a very spirited attack upon human nature as it is at present. I think you'll enjoy it."
Virginia Woolf to Margaret Llewelyn Davies, April 28, 1935.


CHRISTOPHER ISHERWOOD.
Sally Bowles. 1937.
Jacket designed by Richard Kennedy.

"I was fascinated by it [the story of "Sally Bowles"] . . . but . . . I was worried about the abortion episode, and wondered whether, in the climate of those days, our printers would pass it. . . . Sally Bowles was eventually published, with what struck me as considerable courage, in its little separate book by Leonard and Virginia at the Hogarth Press."
John Lehmann, Thrown to the Woolfs (1978).


LEONARD WOOLF.
The Hotel. 1939.

"In 1938 I wrote a play, The Hotel, about the horrors of the twilight age of Europe, the kind of hush that fell upon us before the final catastrophe. . . . It was written in the tension of those horrible years of Hitler's domination and of the feeling that he would inevitably destroy civilization."
Leonard Woolf, Downhill All the Way (1967).


VIRGINIA WOOLF.
Between the Acts. 1941.
Jacket designed by Vanessa Bell.

"I'd decided before your letter came, that I cant [sic] publish that novel as it stands - its [sic] too silly and trivial.
"What I will do is to revise it, and see if I can pull it together and so publish it in the autumn. If published as it is, it would certainly mean a financial loss; which we dont [sic] want. I am sure I am right about this."
Virginia Woolf to John Lehmann, ca. March 27, 1941.

It was never revised. Virginia Woolf committed suicide on March 28, 1941. Between the Acts was published without the intended changes in July of that year, with only slight spelling and textual corrections.

"The only other thing I could do for Virginia was to see Between the Acts through the press at Letchworth: correct the proofs with Leonard, choose the binding, have the jacket prepared by Vanessa, see to the Canadian edition, compose the publicity letters and design advertisements. When it came out, in the third week of July, it was treated as a masterpiece."
John Lehmann, Thrown to the Woolfs (1978).


HENRY GREEN.
Loving. 1945.
Jacket designed by John Piper.

"The arrival of Henry Green as a Hogarth author seemed to me to start a new phase, and gave me confidence for the future. . . . During the war Henry produced in rapid succession a series of brilliant books, more than justifying my belief in him. He also became a much-treasured friend, vivacious and endlessly witty and amusing."
John Lehmann, Thrown to the Woolfs (1978).

Introduction Hand Printed Translations Series The Present
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