Abbreviated title
The Intelligencer, Numbers III, V (and VII), IX; and XIX
JSA Identification Number
10_3_1
Teerink/Scouten Number
41
ESTC Number
T52771
Copy and its Location
CUL , Hib.5.735.10 and 13
Publisher and Printer
The works of J. S, D.D, D.S.P.D. in four volumes, Vol. i. and iv., pp 267-296; 339-349.
Dublin, Faulkner, George, 1735.

Commentary

The Intelligencer was a weekly paper written alternately by Swift and Thomas Sheridan. Like several of the pamphlets of this period, it was first printed by Sarah Harding, who became Swift’s favoured printer after the death of her husband, John. This version was published by George Faulkner in his edition of Swift’s Works in 1735.

Swift identified himself as the author of Intelligencers III, V and VII, IX, XIX, when he wrote to Pope about it (Correspondence of Jonathan Swift, D.D., ed. David Woolley, 4 vols. (Frankfurt am Main: Peter Lang, 1999-), iii. 489), but Faulkner does not include I, and like Pope, when he was editing the Intelligencers for the 1732 Miscellanies, he combines V and VII in one.

Faulkner’s text comes from the 1732 Swift-Pope Miscellanies (perhaps via Fairbrother’s corrected reprint), which in turn come from the 1729 London printing, rather than from Sarah Harding’s.

The text, like all of Faulkner’s work, is well printed and rather formal in its presentation. It uses printer’s ornaments, small capitals at the beginning of each paragraph, and capitals for the beginning of all nouns. Faulkner carried out some revisions, perhaps at Swift’s suggestion or prompting. This printing is more politically explicit (‘Prime Minister’ for ‘great M—‘, with ‘Sir Robert Walpole’ named in a footnote). There are numerous small revisions of the text, largely for economy and elegance. Characteristically, Faulkner expands anything regarded as an abbreviation (for example, ‘till’ to ‘until’)

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 Intelligencer, ed. James Woolley (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1992); The Prose Writings of Jonathan Swift, ed. Herbert Davis and others, 16 vols. (Oxford: Basil Blackwell, 1939-74), vol. xii, pp. 29-61, 325-9; Irvin Ehrenpreis, Swift: The Man, His Works, and the Age, 3 vols. (London: Methuen, 1962-83), vol. iii, pp. 581-6, 779-90; 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.