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prietors of Blackwood like it. This is a wrong which injures two nations and benefits one printer; and that printer would himself do better if he could obtain exclusive rights by fair purchase. No; Messrs. Harper, we are happy to state, are decidedly in favor of an International Copyright, and so is every other general publishing house in the country of which we have any knowledge.

what cost a thousand dollars before the printer saw it. For forty years or more we have all been buying our books and reviews at thieves' prices, - prices in which everybody was considered except the creators of the value; and the consequence is, that we turn away when a proper price is demanded for a book, and regard ourselves as injured beings. How monstrous for a volume of Emerson to be sold for a Consider the case of our venerable dollar! In England and France, when and beloved instructor, "The North the price is to be fixed upon works of American Review," conducted with so that nature, the mere cost of paper and much diligence, energy, and tact by printing is hardly considered at all. the present editors. Not a number Such trifles are felt, and rightly felt, of it has appeared under their man- to have little to do with the quesagement which has not been a nationtion of price. The publisher knows al benefit; and no country more needs very well that he has to dispose of such a periodical than the United one of those rare and beautiful prodStates, now standing on the thresh- ucts which only a very few thousands old of a new career. The time has of his countrymen will care to possess, passed when a review could consist or could enjoy if it were thrust upon chiefly of the skilfully condensed con- them. He fixes the price with refertents of interesting books, which men ence to the facts of the case, — the imcould execute in the intervals of pro- portant facts as well as the trivial, the fessional duty, and think themselves rights of the author as well as the little happy in receiving one dollar for a bill of the printer, and that price is printed page, extracts deducted. At half a guinea. The want of an International Copyright, besides lowering and degrading all literature, has demoralized the public by getting it into the habit of paying for books the price of stolen goods. And hence the North American Review, which would naturally be a most valuable property, has never yielded a profit corresponding to its real value. People stand aghast at the invitation to pay six dollars a year for an article, the mere unmanufactured ingredients of which cost a thousand times six dollars.

the present time, a review must initiate as well as criticise, and do something itself as well as comment upon the performances of others. We believe that no number of the North American Review now appears, the matter of which costs as little as a thousand dollars. But it has to compete, not only with the four British Reviews sold here at the price of paper and printing, but with several periodicals made up of selections from the reviews and magazines of Europe. Nor is this all. A public accustomed to buy books and periodicals at a price into which nothing enters but manual labor and visible material is apt to pause and recoil when it is solicited to pay the just value of those commodities. A man who buys a number of the Westminster Review for half a dollar is likely to regard a dollar and a half as an enormous price for a number of the North American, though he gets for his money

Good contemporary books cannot be very cheap, unless there is stealing somewhere, for a good book is one of the most costly products of nature. Fortunately, they need not be cheap, for it is not necessary to own many of them. As soon as an International Copyright has given tone to the business of writing and publishing books, and has restored the prices of them to the just standard, we shall see a great increase of those facilities for purchas

ing the opportunity to read a book without buying it, which have placed the whole literature of the world at the command of an English farmer who can spare a guinea or two per annum. It is not necessary, we repeat, to possess many new books; it is only necessary to read them, get the good of them, and give a hearty support to the library from which we take them. The purchase of a book should be a serious and well-considered act, not the hasty cramming of a thin, double-columned pamphlet into a coat-pocket, to be read and cast aside at the bottom of a book-case. It is an abominable extravagance to buy a great and good novel in a perishable form for a few cents; it is good economy to pay a few dollars for one substantially bound, that will amuse and inform generations. A good novel, play, or poem can be reread every five years during a long life. When a book is to be selected out of the mass, to become thenceforth part and parcel of a home, let it be well printed and well bound, and, above all, let it be of an edition to which the author has set the seal of his consent and approbation. No one need fear that the addition of the author's ten per cent to the price of foreign books will make them less accessible to the masses of the people. It will make them more accessible, and it will tend to make them better worth keeping.

When we consider the difficulties which now beset the publication of books in the United States, we cannot but wonder at the liberality of American publishers toward foreign authors,


a liberality which has met no return from publishers in Europe. The first money that Herbert Spencer ever received in his life from his books was sent to him in 1861 by the Appletons as his share of the proceeds of his "Essays upon Education"; and every year since he has received upon all his works republished here the percentage usually paid to native authors. This is so interesting a case, and so forcibly illustrates many aspects of our subject, that we will dwell upon it for a moment.

It will occasionally happen that an author is produced in a country who is charged with a special message for another country. There will be something in the cast of his mind, or in the nature of his subject, which renders his writings more immediately or more generally suitable to the people of a land other than his own. We might cite as an example Washington Irving, who, though a sound American patriot, was essentially an English author, and whose earlier works are so English that many English people read them to this day, we are told, who do not suspect that the author was not their countryman. Washington Irving owed his literary career to this fact! His seventeen years' residence abroad enabled him to enjoy part of the advantage which all great authors would derive from an International Copyright, that is to say, he derived revenue from both countries. During the first half of his literary career, he drew the chief part of his income from England; during the second half, when his SketchBook vein was exhausted, and he was again an American resident, he derived his main support from America. If he had never resided abroad, we never should have had a Washington Irving; if he had not returned home, he would have been sadly pinched in his old age. Alone among the American authors of his day or of any day, he had the market of the world for his works; and he only, of excellent American authors, has received anything like a compensation for his labor. The entire proceeds of his works during his lifetime were $205,383, of which about one third came to him from England. His average income, during the fifty years of his authorship, was about four thousand dollars a year. Less than any other of our famous authors he injured his powers by over-production, and it was only the unsteadiness of his income, the occasional failure of his resources, or the dread of a failure, that ever induced him to take up his pen when exhausted nature cried, Forbear! Cooper, on the contrary, who was read

and robbed in every country, wrote himself all out, and still wrote on, until his powers were destroyed and his name was a by-word.

A case similar in principle to that of Irving was Audubon, the indefatigable and amiable Audubon. The exceeding costliness of his "Birds of America" protected that work as completely as an International Copyright could; and, but for this, we never could have had it. Audubon enjoyed the market of the world! The price of his wonderful work was a thousand dollars, and, at that period, neither Europe nor America could furnish purchasers enough to warrant him in giving it to the press. But Europe and America could! Europe and America did, each continent taking about eighty copies. The excellent Audubon, therefore, was not ruined by his brave endeavor to honor his country and instruct mankind. He ended his days in peace in that wellknown villa on the banks of the Hudson, continuing his useful and beautiful labors to the last, and leaving to his sons the means of perfecting what he left incomplete.

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But to return to Herbert Spencer, the author of "Social Statics"; or, as we call it, Jeffersonian Democracy, illustrated and applied. Unconnected with the governing classes of his own country, escaping the universities, bred to none of the professions, and inheriting but a slender patrimony, he earned a modest and precarious livelihood by contributing to the periodicals, and wrung from his small leisure the books that England needed, but would not buy. An American citizen, Professor Youmans, felt all their merit, and perceived how adapted they were to the tastes and habits of the American mind, and how skilfully the ideas upon which America is founded were developed in them. He also felt, as we have heard him say, that, next to the production of excellent works, the most useful thing a man can do in his generation is to aid in giving them currency. Aided by other lovers of his favorite author, he was soon in a position to

bear part of the heavy expense of stereotyping Mr. Spencer's works; and thus Messrs. Appleton were enabled, not only to publish them, but to afford the author as large a share of the proceeds as though he had been a resident of the United States. Thus Herbert Spencer, by a happy accident, enjoys part of the advantage which would accrue to all his brethren from an International Copyright; and we have the great satisfaction of knowing, when we buy one of his volumes, that we are not defrauding our benefactor.

Charles Scribner habitually pays English authors a part of the profit derived from their republished works. Max Müller, Mr. Trench, and others who figure upon his list, derive revenue from the sale of their works in America. Mr. Scribner considers it both his duty and his interest to acquire all the right to republish which a foreign author can bestow; and he desires to see the day when the law will recognize and secure the most obvious and unquestionable of all rights, the right of an author to the product of his mind.

We trust Messrs. Ticknor and Fields will not regard it as an affront to their delicacy if we allude here to facts which recent events have in part disclosed to the public. This house, on principle, and as an essential part of their system, send to foreign authors a share of the proceeds of their works, and this they have habitually done for twenty-five years. The first American edition of the Poems of Mr. Tennyson, published by them in 1842, consisted of one thousand copies, and it was three years in selling; but upon this edition a fair acknowledgment in money was sent to the poet. Since that time, Mr. Tennyson has received from them a certain equitable portion of the proceeds of all the numerous editions of his works which they have issued. Mr. Fields, with great labor and some expense, collected from periodicals and libraries a complete set of the works of Mr. De Quincey, which the house published in twenty-two volumes, the sale of which was barely

remunerative; but the author received, from time to time, a sum proportioned to the number of volumes sold. Mr. Fields has been recently gathering the "Early and Late Papers" of Mr. Thackeray, one volume of which has been published, to the great satisfaction of the public. Miss Thackeray has already received a considerable sum for the sale of the first edition. Mr. Browning, Mr. Hughes, Mr. Reade, the Country Parson, Mr. Kingsley, Mr. Matthew Arnold, Dr. John Brown, Mr. Mayne Reid, Mr. Dickens, have been dealt with in a similar manner; some of them receiving copyright, and others a sum of money proportioned to the sale or expected sale of their works. Nor has the appearance of rival editions been allowed to diminish the author's share of the profits realized upon the editions published with their consent. Mr. Tennyson counts upon the American part of his income with the same certainty as upon that which he derives from the sale of his works in England, although he cannot secure his Boston publishers the exclusive market of the United States. We dare not comment upon these facts, because, if we were to indulge our desire to do so, the passage would be certain "to turn up missing" upon the printed page, since Messrs. Ticknor and Fields live two hundred miles nearer the office of the Atlantic Monthly than we do. Happily, comment is needless. Every man who has either a conscience or a talent for business will recognize either the propriety or the wisdom of their conduct. Upon this rock of fair-dealing the eminent and long-sustained prosperity of this house is founded.

The following note appeared recently in "The Athenæum":

"May I, without egotism, mention in your paper that Messrs. Harper, of New York, have sent me, quite unsolicited, a money acknowledgment for reprinting, in their cheap series, two of my novels, Lizzie Lorton of Greyrigg' and 'Sowing the Wind.' At a time when so many complaints are being made of American

publishers, it is pleasant to be able to record this voluntary act of grace and courtesy from so influential a house. "E. LYNN LINTON."

Complaints, then, are made of American publishers! This is pleasant. We say again, that, after diligent inquiry, we cannot hear of one instance of an English publisher sending money to an American author for anything but advance sheets. Mr. Longfellow is as popular a poet in England as Mr. Tennyson is in America, and he has, consequently, as before remarked, received considerable sums for early sheets, but nothing, we believe, upon the annual sale of his works, nothing from the voluntary and spontaneous justice of his English publishers. We have no right, perhaps, to censure men for not going beyond the requirements of law; but still less can we withhold the tribute of our homage to those who are more just than the law compels, and this tribute is due to several publishers on this side of the Atlantic. But then there remains the great fact against us, that England is willing to-day, and we are not, to throw the protection of international law around this most sacred interest of civilization.

Would that it were in our power to give adequate expression to the mighty debt we owe, as a people, to the living and recent authors of Europe! But who can weigh or estimate the invisible and widely diffused influence of a book? There are sentences in the earlier works of Carlyle which have regenerated American souls. There are chapters in Mill which are reforming the policy of American nations. There are passages in Buckle which give the key to the mysteries of American history. There are lines in Tennyson which have become incorporated into the fabric of our minds, and flash light and beauty upon our daily conversation. There are characters in Dickens which are extinguishing the foibles which they embody, and pages of Thackeray which kill the affectations they depict. What

a colossal good to us is Mr. Grote's "History of Greece"! Miss Mulock, George Eliot, Charles Reade, Charlotte Brontë, Kinglake, Matthew Arnold, Charles Kingsley, Ruskin, Macaulay,- how could we spare the least of them? Take from our lives the happiness and the benefit which we have derived from the recent authors of Europe; take from the future the silent, ceaseless working of their spirits, so antidotal to all that remains in us of colonial, provincial, and superstitious, and what language could state, ever so inadequately, the loss we and posterity should experience? And let us not lay the mean unction to our souls that money cannot repay such services as these. It can! It can repay it as truly and as fully as sixpence pays for a loaf of bread that saves a shipwrecked hero's life. The baker gets his own; he is satisfied, and holy justice is satisfied. This common phrase, "making money," is a poor, mean way of expressing an august and sacred thing; for the money which fairly comes to us, in the way of our vocation, is, or ought to be, the measure of our worth to the community we serve. It is honor, safety, education, leisure, children's bread, wife's dignity and adornment, pleasant home, society, an independent old age, comfort in dying, and solace to those we leave behind us. Money is the representative of all the substantial good that man can bestow on man. And money justly earned is never withheld without damage to the withholder and to the interest he represents.

We often think of the case of Dion Boucicault, the one man now writing the English language who has shown a very great natural aptitude for telling a story, in the dramatic form. For thirty years we have been witnessing his plays in the United States. A fair share of the nightly receipts of the theatres in which they were played would have enriched him in the prime of his talent, or, in other words, have delivered him from that temptation to over-production which has wellnigh

destroyed his powers. He never received any revenue from us until he came here and turned actor. He gets a little money now by associating with himself an American friend, who writes a few sentences of a play, then brings it to New York and disposes of it to managers as their joint production. But what an exquisite shame it is for us to compel an artist to whom we owe so many delightful hours to resort to an artifice in order to be able to sell the product of his talent! Our injustice, too, damages ourselves even more than it despoils him; for if we had paid him fairly for "London Assurance" and "Old Heads and Young Hearts," if he had found a career in the production of plays, he might not have been lured from his vocation, and might have written twenty good plays, instead of a hundred good, bad, indifferent, and atrocious. We cheat him of our part of the just results of his lifetime's labor, and he flings back at us his anathema in the form of a "Flying Scud." Think of Sheridan Knowles, too, deriving nothing from our theatres, in which his dramas have been worn threadbare by incessant playing! To say that they are trash is not an infinitesimal fraction of an excuse; for it is just as wrong to steal paste as it is to steal diamonds. We liked the trash well enough to appropriate it. Besides, he really had the knack of constructing a telling play, which, it seems, is one of the rarest gifts bestowed upon man, and the one which affords the most intense pleasure to the greatest number of people.

Why, we may ask in passing, did the English stage languish for so many years? It was because the

money that should have compensated dramatists enriched actors; because the dramatist that wrote "Blackeyed Susan" was paid five pounds a week, and the actor that played William received four thousand pounds during the first run of the play. In France, where the drama flourishes, it is the actor who gets five pounds a week, and the dramatist who gets the

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