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Angler will be found in the Memoir of Walton, it is unnecessary to say more on the subject.
Many original notes have been added to a selection of the most valuable of those which had appeared in preceding editions; and though the former are chiefly on points of a literary nature, some new piscatory illustrations, from the pens of experienced Anglers, will be found
A striking feature in the arrangement of this edition ought to be mentioned. All the previous editions of the Complete Angler are divided into chapters only, without
any reference to the chronological plan of the work. The dialogue of the First Part occupies five separate days, and the conclusion of the first four of them is distinctly marked by the parties separating for the night. Except in the original edition of 1653, in which what is termed a “space” occurs at those places, there is no apparent division of time; and the dialogue proceeds, without any pause,
from the “good night” of the preceding evening, to the greeting and sports of the ensuing day, whilst the break, caused by a new chapter, is often
* The following explanation of the initials of the authors affixed to them will identify the respective contributors. H. indicates Sir John Hawkins, the editor of the edition published
in 1760. E. Sir Henry Ellis, K. H. editor of the edition published by Mr.
Bagster, 1815. T. Richard Thomson, esq. of the London Institution, the editor of
the edition published by Mr. Major, 1823. Eu. H. is the signature of the late Mr. Haslewood. B. is the initial of Mr. John Baker. For the notes which are undistinguished the Editor is himself res
found in the middle of a conversation, without the slightest change in the situation of the parties, merely because a different subject, or rather a new branch of the same subject is introduced.
The inconsistency of this arrangement of a work so dramatic in character as The Complete Angler is evident; and it is really surprising that the unities of the piece should have hitherto been so completely lost sight of.
In this edition, the dialogue naturally forms five divisions, marked “ The First Day,” “The Second Day,” “ The Third Day,” “ The Fourth Day,” and “ The Fifth Day;" and no other notice is taken of the chapters than by stating at the head of each day, the chapters which it contains, and inserting, in the margin, the number and title of each of them as they occur in the fifth edition.
A similar plan has also been adopted with respect to the Second Part of the work, by Charles Cotton, the dialogue of which occupies three days.
The research which has been used in seeking for new materials for the lives of Walton and Cotton has been rewarded with great success; and it is not a little remarkable, that the sources, which have proved most fertile, were as accessible to his former as to his present biographer. The prefaces to Walton's lives of Donne, Wotton, Hooker, Herbert, and Sanderson, as well as those memoirs themselves, abound in anecdotes or traits of character of their amiable author, which had been unaccountably neglected. Walton's other pieces were scarcely less valuable for this purpose ; and the same remark applies to the various productions of Charles Cotton. To every other source of information diligent application has also been
made; and many new facts, especially as to family connections, have been brought to light. The plan upon which the memoirs of Walton and Cotton have been written, was to introduce every word in which they have alluded to themselves, so as to render them, as far as was practicable, their own biographers. With this view, all their Letters which could be found, and the prefaces and dedications to their works, have been printed at length, whenever they, in any way, illustrated the character of the writers.
The pleasing duty remains of offering both the Publisher's and the Editor's thanks to those numerous persons, from whom they have derived assistance. The list is long, and contains some names distinguished in literature, forming strong evidence of the homage which, at the distance of nearly two centuries, is paid by genius to the worth of “HONEST Izaak.”
Among the individuals by whose contributions this edition has been enriched, the names of Sir Henry Ellis, K.H. the Principal Librarian of the British Museum ; the Rev. Dr. Bliss, of the Bodleian Library; Charles George Young, esq. York Herald; George Frederick Beltz, esq. K.H. Lancaster Herald ; the Rev. Joseph Hunter; Richard Thomson, esq. of the London Institution; Mr. John Baker; Sir Francis Sykes, bart.; Mr. Cafe; Thomas B. Chinn, esq. of Lichfield ; Edward Jesse, esq. of Hampton Court; the late Joseph Haslewood, esq.; B. H. Bright, esq.; and Mr. Hatcher, of Salisbury, are deserving of particular commemoration.
As the Editor was well aware of his incompetency to make
any addition to the science of halieutics, he undertook with reluctance the task of superintending an edition
of the Complete Angler. He felt that, on such matters, he might, like Alexander Brome, in his address to Walton, ask himself,
“ What make I here, to write of that I'm unskill'd in, and talk I know not what ?”
His reluctance was, however, but of short duration, for no one who daily witnessed the Publisher's enthusiasm could possibly withstand its influence. He relieved him from all his difficulties by selecting the notes which relate to the art; while his own attention was entirely bestowed on the literary and biographical parts of the work. It has been to his friend Mr. Pickering literally a labour of love. Neither time nor expense was spared to produce an edition of the Complete Angler worthy of the state of the Arts at the present day, and of the importance which was, in his opinion, due to the subject; and during seven years in which the work has been in progress, his ardour never for a moment abated. It is now for the public to judge of the result of his efforts ; and the Editor, who has so often benefited by his bibliographical knowledge, cannot deny himself the pleasure of expressing a hope, that he to whose taste and exertions these volumes owe nearly all their value, may derive from them the credit which he so well deserves.
15th October, 1836.
LIST OF EMBELLISHMENTS.
1. PORTRAIT OF Walton, from a Picture by Houseman, in the Possession
of the Rev. Dr. Hawes, of Salisbury, copied by Mr. Derby, engraved
Frontispiece 2. VIGNETTE OF THỂ Device
of Waiton, impaling the Arms of his two Wives, viz. Fludd and Ken; and the Arms of Cotton, impaling his two Wives, viz. Hutchinson and Russell, drawn by Mr. Willement, engraved on wood by Byfield
Preface 3. View OF SIR HENRY Wotton's FISHING-HOUSE, on the Banks of the
Thames, near Eton, drawn by Mr. Edward Hassell, engraved by J.
cxxxviii 4. VIEW FROM THE LAWN of Sri H. Wotton's FISHING-HOUSE, with
Windsor Castle and Eton College in the distance, drawn by Mr.
cxxxix 5. PORTRAIT OF CHARLES Corton. Esq. from a Picture by sir Peter
Lely, in the Possession of John Beresford, Esq. at Ashbourne, copied
clxv 6. PORTRAIT (whole length) or Izaik WALTON, from a Painting by Mr.
Inskipp, engraved by H. Robinson 7. ENGRAVED TITLE, designed by T. Stothard,
engraved by A. Fox 8. MADELEY MANOR, the Seat of John Offley, Esq. engraved by Augustus Fox
1 9. Fac-simile of the Title Page of the First Edition of the Compleat
Angler, 1653 10. VIGNETTE OF A MILLDÁM, drawn by Delamotte, engraved by Fox 14 11. THE GREETING AT TOTTENHAM High Cross, drawn by T. Stothard, R.A. engraved by Fox
29 12. VIGNETTE, Head-piece, drawn by T. Stothard, R. A. engraved by W. H. Worthington
29 13. INTERIOR OF THEOBALDS, from a Print by Sparrow, from an Original
Picture then in the Collection of Earl Poulet, at Hinton St. George,
51 14. ExTERIOR OF THEOBALDS, from a Picture by Vinkenboom, in the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge, engraved by J. Richardson
269 15. THE THATCHED House, Hoddesdon, drawn by T. Stothard, R.A. engraved by Fox
81 16. AMWELL Hill, drawn by T. Stothard, R.A. engraved by W. J. Cookė 83 17. VIGNETTE, Head-piece, drawn by T. Stothard, R. A. engraved by Worthington
85 18. VIGNETTE, Head-piece, drawn by T. Stothard, R.A. engraved by Worthington
89 19. TuE BREAKFAST, drawn by T. Stothard, R.A. engraved by Fox 20. THE CHUB, painted by Mr. Inskipp, engraved by Fox : 21. MASTER AND SCHOLAR ANGLING, drawn by T. Stothard, R.A. engraved by Fox
99 22. BLEAK Hall, drawn by W. Hixon, engraved by J. Richardson
113 23. THE MILK MAID's Song, drawn by T. Štothard, R.A. engraved by Fox 115 24. THE TRout, painted by Mr. Inskipp, engraved by Fox 25. VIGNETTE, Head-piece, drawn by 1. Stothard, R.A. engraved by Worthington
131 26. Tue SYCAMORE TREE, drawn by T. Stothard, R. A. engraved by Fox 27. GEORGE INN, WARE, drawn by . Stothard, R.A. engraved by Fox 167 28. THE FLY-FISHER, from a Picture by Mr. Inskipp, engraved by H. Robinson