British Fiction, 18001829

SCOTT, Sir Walter. Redgauntlet (1824)

Publishing Papers

Letter from Archibald Constable to Robert Cadell.
9 Sept 1823.
St Ronans advances & the next after it is already chalked out—it is to contain the Goblins & to be called the ‘Witch’ the materials for which in his extraordinary head—are very abundant […].
Source: E, MS 320, fol. 161.
Notes: The letter is dated from Edinburgh, and refers to a meeting with Scott over the previous weekend. The work immediately under discussion in this phase is St Ronan’s Well (EN2 1824: 84).

Letter from Archibald Constable & Co to Keys & Co.
19 Sept 1823.
[…] you have sent us 1304 reams of the Post above our orders consequently this quantity remains in Mr Ballantynes Printing office at your risk […] [considerable detail about quantity and price for post paper follows] [p. 161] we shall now state for your Consolation, that so soon as the present Work on which the Post is using, is done which we hope will be next month Another will commence and on it we shall proceed to use your over plus paper as we need it.
Source: E, MS 792, pp. 160–61 (copy).
Notes: Addressed to the paper-making firm situated at Abchurch Lane in London (BBTI).

Letter from Archibald Constable & Co to Keys & Co.
28 Nov 1823.
[…] all that we can say with certainty is this the work of the Author of Waverly [sic] now in progress is nearly done A new One will Commence Shortly after, on this work about to commence we shall use the paper you have sent over our order as far as the work will require it which will be somewhere about 1200 Reams.
Source: E, MS 792, p. 173 (copy).

Letter from Archibald Constable & Co to Keys & Co.
2 Mar 1824.
[postscript] There is more on hand than will finish the book at present printing.
Source: E, MS 792, p. 226 (copy).

Letter from Archibald Constable & Co to Black, Young & Young.
18 Mar 1824.
We shall soon we hope, have to address you about a New Work of the Author of Waverley, but as the length to which it may extend is uncertain we delay till it is fixed.
Source: E, MS 792, p. 240 (copy).
Notes: Addressed to the firm in London, and presumably anticipating the sending of advance copy for translation into German.

Letter from Walter Scott to James Ballantyne.
25 Apr 1824.
I think your name of Redgauntlet is excellent. One fault it may have—that of inducing people to think the work is a tale of chivalry—and disappointment is a bad thing. Otherwise the name is a great hit—// I inclose the bills—I could have wishd that the new affair had been brought forward as I am exposed to pay (as I mentioned to you) nearly £2000 or better at Whitsunday & reckoned on some part of the new volume or the produce of the 4th of the present for my occasions which just clears so much debt at four per cent. […] I hope Cadells augury will prove true. I never liked Saint Ronans—this I think better of.
Source: Grierson, VIII, 203; also see Millgate #2277.
Notes: The letter is dated Sunday; date is from Corson, 230 and Millgate. Reference to ‘the 4th of the present’ is to Tales of the Crusaders (EN2 1825: 73).

Letter from Walter Scott to James Ballantyne.
[15 May 1824].
I am attending to your exhortations & winding up my bottom as well as I can. I send proof & copy—In some pages lately sent the lady is erroneously calld Annabel—pray restore her original epithet Lilias. […] [postscript] I think you may press on now—Redgauntlet—a tale of the 18th Century is the Title—& the 3d. volume will be half finishd on Sunday.
Source: Grierson, VIII, 278; also see Millgate #2318.
Notes: Date is from the docket.

Letter from Walter Scott to James Ballantyne.
[3 June 1824].
I am rather surprized at not seeing a mark of yours on the inclosed sheets. I beg you to read them carefully as I always value your corrections & criticisms & think myself surer of escaping errors.
Source: Grierson, VIII, 290; also see Millgate #2327.
Notes: Date is from the docket.

Letter from Archibald Constable & Co to Hodges & McArthur.
9 June 1824.
We have been looking every day for your order for Redgauntlet, but no such order has come to hand We think it fair not to disappoint you and shall send you fifty copies on Friday p Steam to Belfast in case no contrary order comes.
Source: E, MS 792, p. 285 (copy).
Notes: Addressed to the firm in Dublin. The next Friday was 11 June.

Letter from Archibald Constable & Co to Messrs Robinson.
9 June 1824.
The Book by the Author of Waverly [sic] will be with you in a few days.
Source: E, MS 792, p. 285 (copy).
Notes: Addressed to the firm (probably George and Joseph Robinson) in Liverpool.

Letter from Archibald Constable & Co to John Cumming.
9 June 1824.
You have most absurdly not sent us any order for Redgauntlet, if we do not hear from you in a day or two we shall despatch the number we sent you of St Ronans Well the book will be out in a few days.
Source: E, MS 792, p. 286 (copy).
Notes: Cumming was a Dublin bookseller.

Letter from Archibald Constable & Co to Hodges & McArthur.
11 June 1824.
[sending invoices for Redgauntlet, ‘the same number as we sent you of St. Ronan’s Well’].
Source: E, MS 792, p. 289 (copy).
Notes: Addressed to Dublin.

Letter from Archibald Constable & Co to John Cumming.
11 June 1824.
[sending copies of Redgauntlet] it is not right you overlooking any order for your quantity it leaves us at a loss […] The Novel is forwarded to Glasgow from that it is P Steam as usual.
Source: E, MS 792, p. 289 (copy).
Notes: Addressed to Dublin.

Letter from Archibald Constable & Co to Charles P. Archer.
11 June 1824.
You have not sent us any order for Redgauntlet [but sending the same number as for St Ronan’s Well].
Source: E, MS 792, p. 289 (copy).
Notes: Addressed to Archer in Dublin.

Letter from Archibald Constable & Co to Messrs Robinson.
11 June 1824.
You have not sent us any orders for Redgauntlet, but in case you are not aware that it is ready [is sending same number as previous order for St Ronan’s Well] // We send with this an Announcement of it, which please insert as formerly in your best papers.
Source: E, MS 792, p. 290 (copy).
Notes: Addressed to Liverpool.

Letter from Archibald Constable & Co to Mr Bolster.
16 June 1824.
[sending invoice for 50 copies of Redgauntlet] We have this day advice from Glasgow that your two parcels were shipped y[ester]day P Steam to Belfast.
Source: E, MS 792, p. 294 (copy).
Notes: Addressed to Bolster as ‘Bookseller, Cork’.

Letter from Walter Scott to James Ballantyne.
16 June [1824].
The public must take its own way with respect to Redgauntlet as with regard to more important matters. The sale will tell better than anything else how far it will go. I am as firm as Benlomond with respect to any anxiety of an authorial character & we shall know best by Caddells books a month hence how the thing has arrived.
Source: Grierson, VIII, 310; also see Millgate #2337.
Notes: Year is from contents.

Letter from Archibald Constable & Co to Keys & Co.
25 June 1824.
We expected by this time to have used all the Post we had on hand belonging to you—but on account of the Work we have just published (Redgauntlet) being in three Volumes in place of four the quantity we used is less than we calculated on. [p. 302: refers to 604 reams being left].
Source: E, MS 792, pp. 301–02 (copy).
Notes: Addressed to the firm in London.

Letter from Duncan Forbes to Archibald Constable.
22 July1824.
I have received & read Redgauntlet & my best thanks are due to you […] I have neither space nor time to comment on that Performance—If it ranks not among the Chefs d’Oeuvres of the Author of Waverley, it is surely better than the Performances of any other writer—the third Volume is the best & may be considered as a sequel of Waverley itself […].
Source: E, MS 671, fol. 265v.

Letter from Robert Cadell to Archibald Constable.
8 Nov 1824.
[…] Bolster had 50 Redgauntlet from us and paid for them promptly […].
Source: E, MS 323, fol. 484v.
Notes: Bolster was a Cork bookseller; for his order, see letter of 16 June above.

Letter from Maria Edgeworth to Archibald Constable.
18 Nov 1824.
I am delighted with Redgauntlet—The author has made more of rebellion & more of the PreChe[valier]— than any man alive or dead ever did— // In common with thousands & tens of thousands [I] am impatient for the next production of that inexhaustible genius—Christmas I hope will find us All happily with the Crusades [sic].
Source: E, MS 671, fol. 146.
Notes: Edgeworth is anticipating Scott’s forthcoming work of fiction, Tales of the Crusaders (EN2 1825: 73).

Letter from Archibald Constable to Maria Edgeworth.
30 Nov 1824.
Redgauntlet has been generally admired. The Crusaders I fear will not be out till Spring.
Source: E, MS 671, fol. 147v.

Letter from Archibald Constable & Co to Hurst, Robinson & Co.
15 Dec 1824.
[328 copies on their hands].
Source: E, MS 792, p. 376 (copy).

Letter from John Neal to William Blackwood.
22 Mar 1825.
The original pages were larger […] I thought of making these about from 300 to 320 pages a volume. But finding that I had been giving short measure, by dialogue, blanks, & other tricks of authorship: and that Sir. W. Scott in his Red Gauntlet had given 319, 328 & 331 pages to his three volumes—I extended mine […].
Source: E, MS 4015, fol. 121.
Notes: Letter is signed Carter Holmes which was the pseudonym under which Neal wrote to Blackwood. The reference is to his preparation for publication of his Brother Jonathan (EN2 1825:61).

Letter from Robert Cadell to George Boyd.
27 Feb 1827.
In consequence of what passed on Saturday evening, I submit the following to you, viz / [...] 450 Redgauntlet / 450 St Ronan’s Well / 140 Peveril of the Peak [...] You could have all of them very low. I think you could get them off by means of your traveller.
Source: E, Acc 5000/193.
Notes: St Ronan’s Well is EN2 1824: 84; Peveril of the Peak is EN2 1822: 67.

Letter from David Macbeth Moir to William Blackwood.
21 July 1827.
I never saw Hogg appear to greater advantage than in this Number [of the magazine] [...] the traditionary tale of [illeg.] Scott is to me out of all comparison the most perfect and powerful of his prose writings, in many places rivalling the tremendous mysticism of Scotts ‘Wandering Willies tale’ in Redgauntlet [...].
Source: E, MS 4020, fol. 29.
Notes: Referring to Hogg’s ‘The Shepherd’s Calendar: Dreams and Apparitions’ in Blackwood’s Magazine 22 (Aug 1827): 173–85. Moir was a contributor to the magazine, and wrote Mansie Wauch (EN2 1828: 59) (DNB).

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