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prietors of Blackwood like it. This is what cost a thousand dollars before the a wrong which injures two nations printer saw it. For forty years or more and benefits one printer; and that we have all been buying our books printer would himself do better if he and reviews at thieves' prices, – prices could obtain exclusive rights by fair in which everybody was considered purchase. No; Messrs. Harper, we except the creators of the value ; and are happy to state, are decidedly in the consequence is, that we turn away favor of an International Copyright, when a proper price is demanded for and so is every other general pub- a book, and regard ourselves as inlishing house in the country of which jured beings. How monstrous for a we have any knowledge.

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 nation

tion 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 Interthe present time, a review must in- national Copyright, besides lowering itiate as well as criticise, and do some- and degrading all literature, has dething itself as well as comment upon moralized the public by getting it into the performances of others. We be- the habit of paying for books the price lieve that no number of the North of stolen goods. And hence the North American Review now appears, the American Review, which would natumatter of which costs as little as a rally be a most valuable property, has thousand dollars. But it has to com- never yielded a profit corresponding to pete, not only with the four British its real value. People stand aghast at Reviews sold here at the price of the invitation to pay six dollars a year paper and printing, but with several for an article, the mere unmanufactured periodicals made up of selections from ingredients of which cost a thousand the reviews and magazines of Europe. times six dollars. Nor is this all. A public accustomed Good contemporary books cannot be to buy books and periodicals at a price very cheap, unless there is stealing into which nothing enters but manual somewhere, for a good book is one of labor and visible material is apt to the most costly products of nature. pause and recoil when it is solicited Fortunately, they need not be cheap, to pay the just value of those com- for it is not necessary to own many of modities. A man who buys a num- them. As soon as an International ber of the Westminster Review for Copyright has given tone to the busihalf a dollar is likely to regard a dol- ness of writing and publishing books, lar and a half as an enormous price and has restored the prices of them to for a number of the North Amer- the just standard, we shall see a great ican, though he gets for his money increase of those facilities for purchas



ing the opportunity to read a book It will occasionally happen that an without buying it, which have placed author is produced in a country who is the whole literature of the world at the charged with a special message for ancommand of an English farmer who other country. There will be somecan spare a guinea or two per annum. thing in the cast of his mind, or in the It is not necessary, we repeat, to pos- nature of his subject, which renders his sess many new books ; it is only ne- writings more immediately or cessary to read them, get the good of generally suitable to the people of a them, and give a hearty support to the land other than his own. We might library from which we take them. The cite as an example Washington Irving, purchase of a book should be a seri- who, though a sound American patriot, ous and well-considered act, not the was essentially an English author, and hasty cramming of a thin, double-col- whose earlier works are so English umned pamphlet into a coat-pocket, to that many English people read them to be read and cast aside at the bottom this day, we are told, who do not susof a book-case. It is an abominable pect that the author was not their counextravagance to buy a great and good tryman. Washington Irving owed his novel in a perishable form for a few literary career to this fact! His sevcents ; it is good economy to pay a enteen years' residence abroad enfew dollars for one substantially bound, abled him to enjoy part of the advanthat will amuse and inform generations. tage which all great authors would deA good novel, play, or poem can be re- rive from an International Copyright, read every five years during a long life. that is to say, he derived revenue from When a book is to be selected out of both countries. During the first half of the mass, to become thenceforth part his literary career, he drew the chief and parcel of a home, let it be well part of his income from England; durprinted and well bound, and, above all, ing the second half, when his Sketchlet it be of an edition to which the Book vein was exhausted, and he was author has set the seal of his consent again an American resident, he derived and approbation. No one need fear his main support from America. If he that the addition of the author's ten had never resided abroad, we never per cent to the price of foreign books should have had a Washington Irving ; will make them less accessible to the if he had not returned home, he would masses of the people. It will make have been sadly pinched in his old age. them more accessible, and it will tend Alone among the American authors of to make them better worth keeping. his day or of any day, he had the mar

When we consider the difficulties ket of the world for his works ; and he which now beset the publication of only, of excellent American authors, books in the United States, we cannot has received anything like a compensabut wonder at the liberality of Ameri- tion for his labor. The entire proceeds can publishers toward foreign authors, of his works during his lifetime were

a liberality which has met no return $ 205,383, of which about one third from publishers in Europe. The first came to him from England. His avermoney that Herbert Spencer ever re- age income, during the fifty years of ceived in his life from his books was sent his authorship, was about four thouto him in 1861 by the Appletons as his sand dollars a year. Less than any share of the proceeds of his “Essays other of our famous authors he inupon Education”; and every year since jured his powers by over-production, he has received upon all his works re- and it was only the unsteadiness of his published here the percentage usually income, the occasional failure of his repaid to native authors. This is so in- sources, or the dread of a failure, that teresting a case, and so forcibly illus- ever induced him to take up his pen trates many aspects of our subject, that when exhausted nature cried, Forbear ! we will dwell upon it for a moment. Cooper, on the contrary, who was read and robbed in every country, wrote bear part of the heavy expense of himself all out, and still wrote on, until stereotyping Mr. Spencer's works; and his powers were destroyed and bis thus Messrs. Appleton were enabled, name was a by-word.

not only to publish them, but to afford A case similar in principle to that of the author as large a share of the proIrving was Audubon, the indefatigable ceeds as though he had been a resiand amiable Audubon. The exceeding dent of the United States. Thus Hercostliness of his “ Birds of America" bert Spencer, by a happy accident, enprotected that work as completely as an joys part of the advantage which would International Copyright could ; and, but accrue to all his brethren from an Interfor this, we never could have had it. national Copyright; and we have the Audubon enjoyed the market of the great satisfaction of knowing, when we world! The price of his wonderful buy one of his volumes, that we are work was a thousand dollars, and, at not defrauding our benefactor. that period, neither Europe nor Amer- Charles Scribner habitually pays Engica could furnish'purchasers enough to lish authors a part of the profit derived warrant him in giving it to the press. from their republished works. Max But Europe and America could ! Eu- Müller, Mr. Trench, and others who rope and America did, - each conti- figure upon his list, derive revenue nent taking about eighty copies. The from the sale of their works in America. excellent Audubon, therefore, was not Mr. Scribner considers it both his duty ruined by his brave endeavor to honor and his interest to acquire all the right his country and instruct mankind. He to republish which a foreign author can ended his days in peace in that well- bestow; and he desires to see the day known villa on the banks of the Hud- when the law will recognize and secure son, continuing his useful and beauti- the most obvious and unquestionable ful labors to the last, and leaving to his of all rights, the right of an author to sons the means of perfecting what he the product of his mind. left incomplete.

We trust Messrs. Ticknor and Fields But to return to Herbert Spencer, will not regard it as an affront to their the author of “ Social Statics ”; or, as delicacy if we allude here to facts which we call it, Jeffersonian Democracy, il- recent events have in part disclosed lustrated and applied. Unconnected to the public. This house, on prinwith the governing classes of his own ciple, and as an essential part of their country, escaping the universities, bred system, send to foreign authors a share to none of the professions, and inherit- of the proceeds of their works, and ing but a slender patrimony, he earned this they have habitually done for a modest and precarious livelihood by twenty-five years. The first American contributing to the periodicals, and edition of the Poems of Mr. Tennywrung from his small leisure the books

son, published by them in 1842, conthat England needed, but would not sisted of one thousand copies, and it buy. An American citizen, Professor was three years in selling; but upon Youmans, felt all their merit, and per- this edition a fair acknowledgment in ceived how adapted they were to the money was sent to the poet. Since tastes and habits of the American mind, that time, Mr. Tennyson has received and how skilfully the ideas upon which from them a certain equitable portion America is founded were developed of the proceeds of all the numerous in them. He also felt, as we have editions of his works which they have heard him say, that, next to the produc- issued. Mr. Fields, with great labor tion of excellent works, the most useful and some expense, collected from perithing a man can do in his generation odicals and libraries a complete set of is to aid in giving them currency. the works of Mr. De Quincey, which Aided by other lovers of his favorite the house published in twenty-two author, he was soon in a position to volumes, the sale of which was barely


remunerative; but the author received, publishers, it is pleasant to be able to from time to time, a sum proportioned record this voluntary act of grace and to the number of volumes sold. Mr. courtesy from so influential a house. Fields has been recently gathering the

“E. LYNN LINTON." “Early and Late Papers" of Mr. Thackeray, one volume of which has been pub- Complaints, then, are made of Amerilished, to the great satisfaction of the can publishers ! This is pleasant. We public. Miss Thackeray has already say again, that, after diligent inquiry, received a considerable sum for the we cannot hear of one instance of an sale of the first edition. Mr. BrowningEnglish publisher sending money to an Mr. Hughes, Mr. Reade, the Country American author for anything but adParson, Mr. Kingsley, Mr. Matthew vance sheets. Mr. Longfellow is as Arnold, Dr. John Brown, Mr. Mayne popular a poet in England as Mr. Reid, Mr. Dickens, have been dealt Tennyson is in America, and he has, with in a similar manner; some of consequently, as before ren them receiving copyright, and others a ceived considerable sums for early sum of money proportioned to the sale sheets, but nothing, we believe, upon or expected sale of their works. Nor the annual sale of his works, nothing has the appearance of rival editions from the voluntary and spontaneous been allowed to diminish the author's justice of his English publishers. We share of the profits realized upon the have no right, perhaps, to censure editions published with their consent. men for not going beyond the requireMr. Tennyson counts upon the Ameri- ments of law; but still less can we can part of his income with the same withhold the tribute of our homage to certainty as upon that which he derives those who are more just than the law from the sale of his works in England, compels, and this tribute is due to although he cannot secure his Boston several publishers on this side of the publishers the exclusive market of the Atlantic. But then there remains the United States. We dare not comment great fact against us, that England is upon these facts, because, if we were to willing to-day, and we are not, to indulge our desire to do so, the pas- throw the protection of international sage would be certain “ to turn up law around this most sacred interest missing" upon the printed page, since of civilization. Messrs. Ticknor and Fields live two Would that it were in our power to hundred miles nearer the office of the give adequate expression to the mighty Atlantic Monthly than we do. Hap- debt we owe, as a people, to the livpily, comment is needless. Every man ing and recent authors of Europe! But who has either a conscience or a talent who can weigh or estimate the invisifor business will recognize either the ble and widely diffused influence of a propriety or the wisdom of their con- book? There are sentences in the duct. Upon this rock of fair-dealing earlier works of Carlyle which have rethe eminent and long-sustained pros- generated American souls. There are perity of this house is founded. chapters in Mill which are reforming

The following note appeared recently the policy of American nations. There in “ The Athenæum”:

are passages in Buckle which give

the key to the mysteries of American “May I, without egotism, mention in history. There are lines in Tennyson your paper that Messrs. Harper, of New which have become incorporated into York, have sent me, quite unsolicited, a the fabric of our minds, and flash light money acknowledgment for reprintingand beauty upon our daily conversation. in their cheap series, two of my novels. There are characters in Dickens which • Lizzie Lorton of Greyrigg' and 'Sow- are extinguishing the foibles which they ing the Wind. At a time when so many embody, and pages of Thackeray which complaints are being made of American kill the affectations they depict. What a colossal good to us is Mr. Grote's destroyed his powers. He never re“History of Greece"! Miss Mulock, ceived any revenue from us until he George Eliot, Charles Reade, Char- came here and turned actor. He gets lotte Brontë, Kinglake, Matthew Ar- a little money now by associating with nold, Charles Kingsley, Ruskin, Ma- himself an American friend, who writes caulay,- how could we spare the least a few sentences of a play, then brings of them ? Take from our lives the it to New York and disposes of it to happiness and the benefit which we managers as their joint production. have derived from the recent authors But what an exquisite shame it is for us of Europe ; take from the future the to compel an artist to whom we owe so silent, ceaseless working of their spir- many delightful hours to resort to an its, — so antidotal to all that remains artifice in order to be able to sell the in us of colonial, provincial, and super- product of his talent! Our injustice, stitious, - and what language could too, damages ourselves even more than state, ever so inadequately, the loss we it despoils him ; for if we had paid and posterity should experience? And him fairly for “ London Assurance" and let us not lay the mean unction to our “Old Heads and Young Hearts,” if he souls that money cannot repay such had found a career in the production services as these. It can! It can re- of plays, he might not have been lured pay it as truly and as fully as sixpence from his vocation, and might have writpays for a loaf of bread that saves ten twenty good plays, instead of a a shipwrecked hero's life. The baker hundred good, bad, indifferent, and gets his own; he is satisfied, and holy atrocious. We cheat him of our part justice is satisfied.

This common of the just results of his lifetime's phrase, “making money," is a poor, labor, and he flings back at us his mean way of expressing an august anathema in the form of a “ Flying and sacred thing; for the money Scud.” Think of Sheridan Knowles, which fairly comes to us, in the way too, deriving nothing from our theaof our vocation, is, or ought to be, tres, in which his dramas have been the measure of our worth to the com- worn threadbare by incessant playing ! munity we serve. It is honor, safety, To say that they are trash is not an ineducation, leisure, children's bread, finitesimal fraction of an excuse ; for wife's dignity and adornment, pleasant it is just as wrong to steal paste as it is home, society, an independent old age, to steal diamonds. We liked the trash comfort in dying, and solace to those well enough to appropriate it. Bewe leave behind us. Money is the sides, he really had the knack of conrepresentative of all the substantial structing a telling play, which, it seems, good that man can bestow on man. is one of the rarest gifts bestowed upon And money justly earned is never with- man, and the one which affords the held without damage to the withholder most intense pleasure to the greatest and to the interest he represents.

number of people. We often think of the case of Dion Why, we may ask in passing, did Boucicault, the one man now writing the English stage languish for SO the English language who has shown many years ?

It was

because the a very great natural aptitude for tell- money that should have compensated ing a story, in the dramatic form. For dramatists enriched actors; because thirty years we have been witnessing the dramatist that wrote “ Blackhis plays in the United States. A fair eyed Susan” was paid five pounds a share of the nightly receipts of the week, and the actor that played Wiltheatres in which they were played liam received four thousand pounds would have 'enriched him in the prime during the first run of the play. In of his talent, or, in other words, have France, where the drama flourishes, it delivered him from that temptation is the actor who gets five pounds a to over-production which has wellnigh week, and the dramatist who gets the

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