Book ID: 28923 Forget Me Not. A Christmas and New Year's Present for 1823. ENGLISH LITERARY ANNUAL, Frederic Shoberl.
Forget Me Not. A Christmas and New Year's Present for 1823.
Forget Me Not. A Christmas and New Year's Present for 1823.
Forget Me Not. A Christmas and New Year's Present for 1823.

The First English Literary Annual

Forget Me Not. A Christmas and New Year's Present for 1823.

Place and Imprint: London: Published by R. Ackermann, 1823 [for 1822].
Edition: First edition.
Bibliographical References: Faxon, Literary Annuals and Gift Books, 1298; OCLC and Jisc combined record seven copies (Edinburgh, York, Clements, Toronto, UVa, Johns Hopkins and Queensland).
Condition: Edges a little rubbed; some light foxing and brownig; very good copy.
Book ID: 28923

Physical Description

12mo, original decoratively embossed smooth black calf, gilt decorated and lettered spine, a.e.g. Presentation plate, frontispiece, engraved title and 12 plates by John Samuel Agar. 22 pages of terminal advertisements.

Comments

The first English literary annual, issued in November 1822, a seminal work in English publishing history. The Forget Me Not was phenomenally successful and quickly became a model for scores of similar works that would be issued by English and American publishers over the next 25 years, the study of which has been the subject of at least two bibliographies. Forget Me Not was the brainchild of publisher Rudolph Ackermann, famous for his color-plate books. The publisher’s advertisement states that it is the “first attempt to rival the numerous and elegant publications of the Continent, expressly designed to serve as tokens of remembrance, friendship, or affection, at that season of the year which ancient custom has particularly consecrated to the interchange of such memorials. . . . [and that] the Forget-Me-Not shall be ready for delivery every year early in November." The advertisement also notes that the 12 engravings by John Agar were being accompanied "with poetical illustrations from the pen of an eminently popular writer." That was William Combe (1742-1823), and the poems in this first Forget Me Not were one of his final efforts for Ackermann, for whom he was virtually a staff writer; for several years he wrote the text and comic verse for many of the Ackermann color-plate books, most notably The Tour of Dr. Syntax. The editor of the volume, Frederic Shoberl (1775-1853), was a prolific writer who also had a long association with Ackermann. See the ODNB for Ackermann, Combe and Shoberl. The presentation plate has a contemporary inscription to "E. R. Kemp / From / her affect. Father." Page "v" contains an introductory "Advertisement" for this Forget Me Not, explaining the publisher's idea behind it and stating that it was "To be continued annually."

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