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Page:Notes and Queries - Series 9 - Volume 9.djvu/12

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NOTES 'AND QUERIES. [9 th s. ix. JAN. 4, 1902.


for the use of which Tennyson gave special permission. In 1900 great changes were again made, both in the size and appearance of the magazine, bringing it well up to modern requirements. My father fre- quently advised that advertisements should be taken for the monthly parts, and repre- sented what an additional source of revenue they would prove ; but for many years no advertisements except a few from its own publisher were inserted, "the commercial advantage being held to be subordinate to the general aim."

The Leisure Hour has always been noted for its excellent illustrations. Mr. (after- wards Sir) John Gilbert was for long its principal artist, and as a contrast to later times, it is interesting to note that at the height of his fame he never charged more than five guineas a drawing.

Through the kindness of Mr. James Bowden and the Rev. Richard Lovett, I am in a position to give the number of publications of all kinds issued by the Religious Tract Society during the' year ending March 31st, 1901, and the total issues from the formation of the Society. During that year 682 new publications were issued, of which 268 were tracts. The Society has already published, or helped others to publish, books and tracts in 250 languages, dialects, and characters. The total circulation in the year from the home depot, including books, tracts, booklets, handbills, periodicals (reckoned in numbers), cards, and miscellaneous issues, reached 31,646,560, including 15,227,990 tracts. The issues from foreign depots, so far as can be ascertained, amounted to 20,000,000, making a total circulation of 51,646,560, and of 3,438,565,420 since the formation of the Society.

The Jubilee number records the important services rendered to the literature of the people by the Messrs. Chambers and John Cassell. And in addition to these mention should also be made of the father of our periodical literature, John Limbird, as well as Charles Knight. In January, 1822, Lim- bird started the Mirror, and it was published weekly at the then low price of twopence It consisted of a sheet of sixteen dernv octavo pages, with one or two woodcuts In the Athenaeum for the 22nd of January 1831 the bound volume for the half vear received high praise: "It is just the" humanizm- volume that ought to delight the fireside o? every cottage in the kingdom." The notice was evidently written by Mr. Dilke. John Limbird died on the 30th of October 1883


aged eighty-eight. The Penny Magazine was started ten years after the Mirror, being commenced in March, 1832, Charles Knight undertaking the risk and becoming its editor, Alexander Ramsay acting as sub-editor. The title was originated by Mr. M. D. Hill, then member for Hull. Mr. Bulwer (after- wards Lord Lytton) in the House of Com- mons described it as "affording a trumpery education to the people/' and Dr. Arnold described it as "all ramble-scramble." De Morgan was amongst its first contributors, writing for it a series of mathematical papers. Such was its success that at the end of its first year it had reached a sale of 200,000. The magazine terminated unexpectedly in 1845.

Of the progress made by Chambers's Edinburgh Journal when entering on its fourteenth year, the number for January 4th, 1845, contains an interesting account. The sale of the monthly part is given as forty thousand, while that of ' Chambers's Informa- tion for the People ' had been about a hundred and thirty thousand ; and the same article states that upwards of a quarter of a million of printed sheets left the house every week, "being as many as the whole newspaper press of Scotland issued in a month about the year 1833." It is curious that in the same article a suggestion should be made that books should be sold by general dealers.

Although Chambers's Journal is still issued in weekly numbers, the monthly - part sale is far the larger. In 1882 its Jubilee was celebrated, and in the number for the 28th of January Mr. William Chambers contributes 'Reminiscences of a Long and Busy Life,' and includes a history of the founding of the Journal and much interesting informa- tion concerning himself and his brother Robert. Seven months after the starting of the Journal literature had to mourn the death of Sir Walter Scott, which occurred on the 21st of September, 1832. At the funeral, which took place on Wednesday, the 26th, the brothers were present, and William writes of it : " The spectacle presented at the final solemnity the large concourse of mourners clustered under the trees near the ruins of the Abbey .of Dryburgh, the sonorous reading of the funeral service amidst the silent crowd, and the gloomy atmosphere overhead is one never to be obliterated from remembrance."

JOHN C. FRANCIS. (To be continued.)