Abbreviated title
Gulliver's Travels
JSA Identification Number
11_9_1_1
Teerink/Scouten Number
41
ESTC Number
T52771
Copy and its Location
English Faculty Library Oxford , L77
Publisher and Printer
The works of J. S, D.D, D.S.P.D. in four volumes, Vol. iii., pp .
Dublin, Faulkner, George, 1735.

Commentary

The text of Faulkner’s edition of Gulliver’s Travels in the Works of 1735 is significantly different from that published by Benjamin Motte in 1726. On 3 January 1727 Charles Ford had sent Motte a list of corrections, while drawing attention to other passages where he suggested there had been interference with the author’s writing and meaning. Whether F. P. Lock is right in thinking this was a joke, playfully disguising Swift’s revisions, or whether, as seems to me much more likely, Ford was drawing attention to alterations by Motte’s friend, Revd. Andrew Tooke, these passages are now attended to, and more specific satire takes the place of very careful and guarded general satire. The Lindalino passage, dealing with the affair of Wood’s halfpence, which appears in Ford’s interleaved copy, is not, however, included even here, and I suspect Swift always regarded it as too dangerous for publication. I think this is much the better version of Gulliver’s Travels to read, the first having been mingled and mangled by Tooke. The printing is in the usual style of the 1735 Works, with paragraphs beginning with small capitals, capitals for nouns, and a free use of italics; its revisions of spellings are those Swift liked to make in this period.

George Faulkner (?1703-1775) was Swift’s most important publisher and editor. In his early years Swift tended to publish his major works through the London trade, but with the Drapier’s Letters (1724) Dublin publication became more important. Faulkner, who had worked for William Bowyer in London and was a polished printer, brought out the first collected edition of the Drapier’s Letters, as Fraud Detected, in 1725, and by 1732 was planning a subscription edition of Swift’s Works. The four volumes came out in 1735, and established Faulkner as Swift’s printer. Swift, at least to some extent, and his friends had collaborated in the edition. Faulkner continued to print Swift and to enlarge his edition, which by 1771 consisted of twenty volumes.

Faulkner did his best both to date Swift’s works and to elucidate them with footnotes. His pioneering work is of first importance both for Swift’s text and for explanatory notes. For further discussion of Faulkner, see the long note in the Gulliver’s Travels volume in the Cambridge Edition of the Works of Jonathan Swift, and Mary Pollard’s entry on him in her Dictionary.

References: The Prose Writings of Jonathan Swift, ed. Herbert Davis and others, 16 vols. (Oxford: Basil Blackwell, 1939-74), vol. xi; Irvin Ehrenpreis, Swift: The Man, His Works, and the Age, 3 vols. (London: Methuen, 1962-83), vol. iii, pp. 442-72, 497-508; Gulliver’s Travels, ed. Claude Rawson and Ian Higgins (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2005); F. P. Lock, The Politics of Gulliver’s Travels (Oxford, 1980), pp. 66-88; F. P. Lock, ‘The Text of Gulliver’s Travels’, Modern Language Review, 76 (1981), 513-33; Michael Treadwell, ‘Benjamin Motte, Andrew Tooke and Gulliver’s Travels’, in Proceedings of the First Münster Symposium on Jonathan Swift, ed. Hermann J. Real and Heinz J. Vienken (München: Wilhelm Fink, 1985), 287-304; Michael Treadwell, ‘The Text of Gulliver’s Travels, Again’, Swift Studies, 10 (1995), 62-79; Mary Pollard, A Dictionary of Members of the Dublin Book Trade 1550-1800 (London: The Bibliographical Society, 2000); Mary Pollard, ‘George Faulkner’, Swift Studies, 7 (1992), 79-96.