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Post Info TOPIC: Ward Lock Book 1 - Ross Poldark.


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Date: May 12 10:55 PM, 2019
RE: Ward Lock Book 1 - Ross Poldark.
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Kathy wrote:
Stella Poldark wrote:

Little Henry - I am not clear what you are saying here. What is this article to which you refer? Is it quoting Winston Graham from an article or interview or his memoirs? I do not recall anything in his memoirs where he said he had revised the first four Poldark books. I do, however, recall that he said he had resisted Ward Lock's request to reduce the word count for Ross and Demelza and that he had refused to do this.


Though the question is not directly addressed in Memoirs of a Private Man, there is pertinent indirect evidence there to consider. WG recounts how, when sales of the Poldark novels began to fall off in the late 1950s, Ward Lock allowed the copyrights to revert to him. He then struck an agreement with Max Reinhardt that Bodley Head should republish the four novels, which they did in the years 1960 and 1961, using in each case the revised rather than the original Ward Lock text.

If the changes had been made by the American publisher against WG's wishes, or without his permission or involvement, or somehow behind his back, why did the first UK republication of the novels use the revised texts? If WG did not do the revisions himself, would he even have had access to the revised manuscripts? At the very least he must have approved of the revisions or he wouldn't have let Bodley Head (and virtually all other publishers since) reproduce them. 

Incidentally, when Bodley Head republished WG's 1941 novel Night Journey, it was revised far more thoroughly than either Ross Poldark or Demelza. Who would you say did that?


 Kathy - it isn't as straightforward as you think. In 2002 the publisher House of Stratus requested the right to publish Ross Poldark. WG granted this permission and gave them the Ward Lock version. This book occasionally appears for sale on Abebooks and from other sellers. It is a mystery but not one that is capable of being solved, I fear.



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Ah ok with you now thanks....smile



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Date: May 12 6:50 PM, 2019
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Sorry not to have been clearer. Memoirs tells of the transfer of copyright from Ward Lock to WG to Bodley Head. It's only by reading the Bodley Head editions that you discover that they all have the "revised" text. That's why the Ward Lock editions with the "full" text are becoming so sought after / pricy.



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Interesting where does it say "using in each case the revised rather than the original Ward Lock text." ?



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Stella Poldark wrote:

Little Henry - I am not clear what you are saying here. What is this article to which you refer? Is it quoting Winston Graham from an article or interview or his memoirs? I do not recall anything in his memoirs where he said he had revised the first four Poldark books. I do, however, recall that he said he had resisted Ward Lock's request to reduce the word count for Ross and Demelza and that he had refused to do this.


Though the question is not directly addressed in Memoirs of a Private Man, there is pertinent indirect evidence there to consider. WG recounts how, when sales of the Poldark novels began to fall off in the late 1950s, Ward Lock allowed the copyrights to revert to him. He then struck an agreement with Max Reinhardt that Bodley Head should republish the four novels, which they did in the years 1960 and 1961, using in each case the revised rather than the original Ward Lock text.

If the changes had been made by the American publisher against WG's wishes, or without his permission or involvement, or somehow behind his back, why did the first UK republication of the novels use the revised texts? If WG did not do the revisions himself, would he even have had access to the revised manuscripts? At the very least he must have approved of the revisions or he wouldn't have let Bodley Head (and virtually all other publishers since) reproduce them. 

Incidentally, when Bodley Head republished WG's 1941 novel Night Journey, it was revised far more thoroughly than either Ross Poldark or Demelza. Who would you say did that?



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Little Henry wrote:

I was browsing on a site called "winstongraham.yolasite.com".  There are a lot of what I call "articles" about WG.  One was called "WG's rewriting habits".  It quoted WG from his Memoirs only saying that he refused to reduce RP by 20,000 words.  The author of the article then goes on to say WG must have changed his mind or he assumes he changed his mind about this and revised RP.  I couldn't find a name attached to the article.  I'm still not sure I'm making it clear but, no, there was no quote from WG about revising the 4 novels.


 Ah yes, I know the site. It has been established by Jim Dring, who, to give him his due, has done a lot of research but his view on the editing of the first four books is supposition and not based on any evidence.



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I was browsing on a site called "winstongraham.yolasite.com".  There are a lot of what I call "articles" about WG.  One was called "WG's rewriting habits".  It quoted WG from his Memoirs only saying that he refused to reduce RP by 20,000 words.  The author of the article then goes on to say WG must have changed his mind or he assumes he changed his mind about this and revised RP.  I couldn't find a name attached to the article.  I'm still not sure I'm making it clear but, no, there was no quote from WG about revising the 4 novels.



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Little Henry wrote:

I see now that some people assume the revision of "Ross Poldark" and the other three books were written by WG and I also see that I took his refusal to shorten the book to be final.  I just read an article that quoted WG in his memoirs but then asked why he changed his mind after a few years and wrote the revision.  I was indignant that someone else (a copy editor) would change his words but if he changed his own words it's quite something else.  I'm not even sure now which scenario I prefer.  Maybe it wouldn't have reached such a wide audience in its original form.  It still seems odd to me that no-one ever seemed to have asked him about it but then in 1951 perhaps it wouldn't have been such a big thing.  Either way I of course prefer the original organic version.


 Little Henry - I am not clear what you are saying here. What is this article to which you refer? Is it quoting Winston Graham from an article or interview or his memoirs? I do not recall anything in his memoirs where he said he had revised the first four Poldark books. I do, however, recall that he said he had resisted Ward Lock's request to reduce the word count for Ross and Demelza and that he had refused to do this.



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Date: May 10 4:03 AM, 2019
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I see now that some people assume the revision of "Ross Poldark" and the other three books were written by WG and I also see that I took his refusal to shorten the book to be final.  I just read an article that quoted WG in his memoirs but then asked why he changed his mind after a few years and wrote the revision.  I was indignant that someone else (a copy editor) would change his words but if he changed his own words it's quite something else.  I'm not even sure now which scenario I prefer.  Maybe it wouldn't have reached such a wide audience in its original form.  It still seems odd to me that no-one ever seemed to have asked him about it but then in 1951 perhaps it wouldn't have been such a big thing.  Either way I of course prefer the original organic version.



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It seems clear to me that WG is saying that he refused to shorten RP and since he wrote his Memoirs late in life he surely would have mentioned if he did revise it.  I get the impression that when WG sent a book off to be published that was the end of it.  I can't imagine him going over it word for word and slashing small and huge portions of it.  And remember all 4 original books were revised not just RP.  On Wikipedia it just says that the novel was republished in the U.S. (not by Ward Lock) in 1951 as "The Renegade" and significantly shortened.  That doesn't sound like a re-write by WG to me.  WG had already polished, pruned and rewritten RP extensively.  There was no going back.  I certainly wish he had said more about it in his Memoirs though.  I'm certainly not knowledgeable as to what publishers can do but they wanted a shorter book and simply shortened it.  I only mention all the word changes because I was surprised by it.  There are also tons of descriptive words and phrases that are omitted and many many words are contracted.  (I didn't count them in my "changes" of words).  For starters, I doubt very much that they would have asked WG if they could change the title.  Much the same happened with the movies of his books, many changes and even the ending of "Marnie" was changed.

I have recently bought the DVD of Season 4 of the current TV series and once again U.S. and Canadian audiences are robbed of a full version.  No matter what one thinks of the new series the episodes we get on TV here are horribly slashed, some minor and some very big whole scenes.  Much like the revision of the books on a smaller scale but they are obviously allowed to do this and I'm sure DH has no say about what is cut.  Seeing the series on a different channel, the cuts made were entirely different.

No doubt all 120 word changes could be explained or justified and if I was honest some may be better.  For instance, I didn't like all the contractions of words but maybe it reads easier.

In comparing the two versions so closely I must say my attention was brought to WG's descriptions of the clothing worn by all the characters.  Half of the description was usually edited out in the new version and I had to marvel at the full version.  He must have done a lot of research on that one subject to describe the clothing so thoroughly.

 



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Blackleburr wrote:
Stella Poldark wrote:
Kathy - we are not talking about minor changes of the kind you mention in your post, but rather an entire missing chapter and many edited out texts in books one and two - around 12% of missing text in Ross Poldark and 14% in Demelza. These missing parts do distort the overall books and so one has to at least entertain the possibility that Winston Graham did not know about this editing even though we cannot know for sure how this happened. 

Stella - sorry, but these little changes are exactly what Little Henry was talking about, and listed, below:

"I have just about finished comparing the two editions and find that I'm most annoyed at the CHANGES of words than at the omissions (although that is bad enough)."

In response to that, you said you agreed with all Little Henry had said - so I think Kathy was justified in responding to this part of the discussion.


 I apologise for jumping in without reading the entire thread.



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Stella Poldark wrote:
Kathy - we are not talking about minor changes of the kind you mention in your post, but rather an entire missing chapter and many edited out texts in books one and two - around 12% of missing text in Ross Poldark and 14% in Demelza. These missing parts do distort the overall books and so one has to at least entertain the possibility that Winston Graham did not know about this editing even though we cannot know for sure how this happened. 

Stella - sorry, but these little changes are exactly what Little Henry was talking about, and listed, below:

"I have just about finished comparing the two editions and find that I'm most annoyed at the CHANGES of words than at the omissions (although that is bad enough)."

In response to that, you said you agreed with all Little Henry had said - so I think Kathy was justified in responding to this part of the discussion.



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Kathy wrote:

The first two Poldark novels were particularly dear to Graham's heart and I don't believe, once the decision was taken to revise them, that he would have entrusted the job to anyone else. He was a very sensitive, acutely perceptive writer. Though it's not possible to pinpoint from what she wrote all the places where Little Henry identifies short changes in Ross Poldark, I did find some and looked for a reason why the change might have been made:

(1) "Spanish onion" to "French onion" - probably because, since France lies just across the water with plenty of boats plying back and forth in trade, the latter would be more likely, so changed for accuracy's sake.

(2) "blow" to "knock" - because the lines immediately before and after this phrase mention wind (the first also includes the word "blew"), so changing "blow" to "knock" removes the possibility of any double-entendre misunderstanding.

(3) "most kind" to "very kind" - simply because, as reported speech, the revised phrase sounds more natural.

(4) "bouquet of sea campion" to "posy of sea pinks" - Graham is describing what Demelza might bring back with her after going out walking: "Sometimes it was a bunch of meadowsweet and ragged robin, sometimes an armful of foxgloves or a posy of sea pinks." The change discards a formal, slightly fancy phrase and replaces it with a charming, homely and pleasingly alliterative substitute. You can imagine Demelza using the second phrase, but not the first.

 


 Kathy - we are not talking about minor changes of the kind you mention in your post, but rather an entire missing chapter and many edited out texts in books one and two - around 12% of missing text in Ross Poldark and 14% in Demelza. These missing parts do distort the books overall and so one has to at least entertain the possibility that Winston Graham did not know about this editing even though we cannot know for sure how this happened. 



-- Edited by Stella Poldark on Thursday 2nd of May 2019 08:34:12 PM

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The first two Poldark novels were particularly dear to Graham's heart and I don't believe, once the decision was taken to revise them, that he would have entrusted the job to anyone else. He was a very sensitive, acutely perceptive writer. Though it's not possible to pinpoint from what she wrote all the places where Little Henry identifies short changes in Ross Poldark, I did find some and looked for a reason why the change might have been made:

(1) "Spanish onion" to "French onion" - probably because, since France lies just across the water with plenty of boats plying back and forth in trade, the latter would be more likely, so changed for accuracy's sake.

(2) "blow" to "knock" - because the lines immediately before and after this phrase mention wind (the first also includes the word "blew"), so changing "blow" to "knock" removes the possibility of any double-entendre misunderstanding.

(3) "most kind" to "very kind" - simply because, as reported speech, the revised phrase sounds more natural.

(4) "bouquet of sea campion" to "posy of sea pinks" - Graham is describing what Demelza might bring back with her after going out walking: "Sometimes it was a bunch of meadowsweet and ragged robin, sometimes an armful of foxgloves or a posy of sea pinks." The change discards a formal, slightly fancy phrase and replaces it with a charming, homely and pleasingly alliterative substitute. You can imagine Demelza using the second phrase, but not the first.

 



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Little Henry wrote:

In his Memoirs WG says of writing "Ross Poldark":  "In the course of it I rewrote and rewrote and rewrote, polishing and pruning, adding and subtracting, trying to get the perfect balance in each chapter between emotion and restraint.  Some chapters I wrote nine times: ....."  His publishers asked him to cut 20,000 words but he said he wasn't willing to cut anything so they took it as it was.  As we all know later publishers just must have asked someone else to shorten the book.  Obviously WG took great care in his writing this book so what a lot is missed in the new versions especially in the thoughts and feelings of the main characters.  For instance, at least 10 sentences have been omitted relating to Demelza's thoughts and feelings when she is contemplating seducing Ross.  I have just about finished comparing the two editions and find that I'm most annoyed at the CHANGES of words than at the omissions (although that is bad enough). There are well over 100 one-word changes.  Some of them are inexplicable (as two I have previously mentioned) and absolutely unnecessary, i.e., "squabbling" changed to "quarrelling", "grave" changed to "serious" as if the new writer had a better word than WG or that Americans couldn't understand what those words meant.  It's a shame that WG's "beaus and damsels" was changed to the mundane "men and women" when describing people at a ball.  Some are comical as when Verity offers Ross some seeds of "Spanish onion", it is changed to "French onion" and "bouquet of sea campion" changed to "posy of sea pinks".

It made me realize that the other books must have so many omissions and changes too so I have ordered Ward Lock editions of "Jeremy Poldark" and "Warleggan" as I do not want to read the new versions.  And I am desperately seeking "Demelza", the first edition, without much luck so far. 

 


 Little Henry - I agree with all you say. I too don't believe that the changes were made by Winston. The memoirs bear this out. I have no idea whether subsequent publishers would have had a legal right to change the texts. Winston would not have had time to re-read the books and it is clear from the inconsistencies in the different Poldark books that he didn't re-read even the previous book before embarking on the next. One example is that the distance between Nampara and Trenwith is out by a mile or two throughout the 12 books.

Unless you are very lucky you will find a first edition Demelza very costly. Good luck in your search. 



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In his Memoirs WG says of writing "Ross Poldark":  "In the course of it I rewrote and rewrote and rewrote, polishing and pruning, adding and subtracting, trying to get the perfect balance in each chapter between emotion and restraint.  Some chapters I wrote nine times: ....."  His publishers asked him to cut 20,000 words but he said he wasn't willing to cut anything so they took it as it was.  As we all know later publishers just must have asked someone else to shorten the book.  Obviously WG took great care in his writing this book so what a lot is missed in the new versions especially in the thoughts and feelings of the main characters.  For instance, at least 10 sentences have been omitted relating to Demelza's thoughts and feelings when she is contemplating seducing Ross.  I have just about finished comparing the two editions and find that I'm most annoyed at the CHANGES of words than at the omissions (although that is bad enough). There are well over 100 one-word changes.  Some of them are inexplicable (as two I have previously mentioned) and absolutely unnecessary, i.e., "squabbling" changed to "quarrelling", "grave" changed to "serious" as if the new writer had a better word than WG or that Americans couldn't understand what those words meant.  It's a shame that WG's "beaus and damsels" was changed to the mundane "men and women" when describing people at a ball.  Some are comical as when Verity offers Ross some seeds of "Spanish onion", it is changed to "French onion" and "bouquet of sea campion" changed to "posy of sea pinks".

It made me realize that the other books must have so many omissions and changes too so I have ordered Ward Lock editions of "Jeremy Poldark" and "Warleggan" as I do not want to read the new versions.  And I am desperately seeking "Demelza", the first edition, without much luck so far. 

 



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I wonder how price is determined?  It's nice for WG that his book is so valued.  Having lost 2 books recently "in transit" I hope whoever buys it will make sure it's sent by trackable delivery!



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https://pictures.abebooks.com/BARTERBOOKS/md/md17116251097.jpg

 

Have a look at this but particularly the price! It's shocking how much is being asked for first edition Ward Lock Ross Poldark in a somewhat tatty condition!



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Little Henry wrote:

I am very excited about my House of Stratus Ross Poldark.  Thank you again Stella for alerting its availability.  There are changes and additions on nearly every page so far so I decided to compare each word in both books and write them down as I knew I would never find them again if I ever wanted to find a certain passage.  There are other posts here under House of Stratus but this site seemed the most recent and mentioned House of Stratus.  In my research I found a site called WG: A BIBLIOGRAPHY which listed all of WG's books and publications and they state that the House of Stratus 2002 publication is "reproduced from the original with uncut text".  I can well believe that as I can't imagine any further additions to the H of S. 

There are minor changes of words - i.e. worst "blow" of his life changed to worst "knock" of his life.  "Most" kind becomes "very" kind.  You wonder why!  There are sentences, paragraphs and so far as many as three pages which have been edited out of the new publications.  Some have been mentioned already on the H of S sites but I thought I would mention a couple that show to me how much is missed in the edited passages.

When Ross is leaving Trenwith after interrupting the engagement party my Pan Books version reads:  "Goodbye.  He took her hand."  In the H of S it reads "Goodbye.  He took her hand.  His was hard with two years of rough living.  Hers was small and slim and delicate, but under the softness there was a grip that held upon his."  That little detail of Elizabeth's grip moved me.

Earlier Francis alone makes a toast to "his wife to be" and "Elizabeth smiled brilliantly up at her lover."  I think it subtly shows how conflicted she was. 

What a shame the H of S didn't re-issue "Demelza" and there would be more affordable copies around. 


 Little Henry - This is interesting as I had assumed the H of S book was exactly the same as the first edition Ward Lock. There is, indeed, a large amount of text cut from the original in the Pan MacMillan versions of Ross Poldark and Demelza. It is strange that H of S did not publish all of the first four books but instead published others that were not edited which were 'The Stranger from the Sea', 'The Miller's Dance', 'The Angry Tide' and 'The Loving Cup'. They were all published in 2002 by H of S when WG was alive so he would have made the decision to allow H of S to publish them. 



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I am very excited about my House of Stratus Ross Poldark.  Thank you again Stella for alerting its availability.  There are changes and additions on nearly every page so far so I decided to compare each word in both books and write them down as I knew I would never find them again if I ever wanted to find a certain passage.  There are other posts here under House of Stratus but this site seemed the most recent and mentioned House of Stratus.  In my research I found a site called WG: A BIBLIOGRAPHY which listed all of WG's books and publications and they state that the House of Stratus 2002 publication is "reproduced from the original with uncut text".  I can well believe that as I can't imagine any further additions to the H of S. 

There are minor changes of words - i.e. worst "blow" of his life changed to worst "knock" of his life.  "Most" kind becomes "very" kind.  You wonder why!  There are sentences, paragraphs and so far as many as three pages which have been edited out of the new publications.  Some have been mentioned already on the H of S sites but I thought I would mention a couple that show to me how much is missed in the edited passages.

When Ross is leaving Trenwith after interrupting the engagement party my Pan Books version reads:  "Goodbye.  He took her hand."  In the H of S it reads "Goodbye.  He took her hand.  His was hard with two years of rough living.  Hers was small and slim and delicate, but under the softness there was a grip that held upon his."  That little detail of Elizabeth's grip moved me.

Earlier Francis alone makes a toast to "his wife to be" and "Elizabeth smiled brilliantly up at her lover."  I think it subtly shows how conflicted she was. 

What a shame the H of S didn't re-issue "Demelza" and there would be more affordable copies around. 



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Mrs Gimlett wrote:

I have just been reading all the posts on this thread and am now curious.

Dark Mare, you say that the chapter about Reuben Clemmow is on the Kindle edition of Ross Poldark.  Just to be quite sure we're talking about the same thing this is how the chapter begins.

'He walked over on the following Sunday to see Reuben Clemmow.  It was about five o'clock in the afternoon.  Faces in the cottages watched him go.

He knocked upon the door...'

and concludes with

'Ross listened for a moment and could hear the man whimpering with anger.  He did not turn back.  Enough had been said for one day. He took a deep breath.  He found his muscles were tensed, as if they had known him to be in danger.'

This is part II of Chapter 8 in Book 1.

I am interested to know if all that is on Kindle, because it doesn't appear in any other version apart from the Ward Lock First Edition and the House of Stratus book.  If it has been included on Kindle, I wonder if any other of the excised copy has.  It needs checking. 

A few years ago, new editions of the first couple of books appeared in my local bookshop.  They were bound in faux leather, with a classy looking dust jacket and gold edged pages.  On the cover it stated 'complete and unabridged'.  I had a quick look through RP and it was exactly the same as the PanMacmillan paperbacks in content - ie the heavily edited version. It is as though the First Editions have never existed - no editing seems ever to have been acknowledged except by contributors here. 

Such a shame because the difference in reading the original first two books is akin to seeing the complete TV series, as opposed to the shortened version those abroad get.


Sorrow to be so late in replying. I just found this. (I have been trapped in the 21st century by the often-riveting midterm election campaigns, but it's over now. Back to the 1790s.)

As for your question, sometimes I have rocks in my head. The only Kindle edition of "Ross Poldark" that has that encounter in it is mine because I used the notes function to type it in. I forget that I have inserted omitted passages from "Ross Poldark" and "Demelza" in my Kindle copies. I just remember reading it in the given book. 



-- Edited by Dark Mare on Wednesday 7th of November 2018 01:48:22 PM

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I have never seen a House of Stratus edition, Stella, but some years ago we had discussions about it.  It seemed to have everything in it we talked about, but there may well be a few omissions.  If so, I think they would be very small and insofar as anything is, fairly insignificant.



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Mrs Gimlett wrote:

I have just been reading all the posts on this thread and am now curious.

Dark Mare, you say that the chapter about Reuben Clemmow is on the Kindle edition of Ross Poldark.  Just to be quite sure we're talking about the same thing this is how the chapter begins.

'He walked over on the following Sunday to see Reuben Clemmow.  It was about five o'clock in the afternoon.  Faces in the cottages watched him go.

He knocked upon the door...'

and concludes with

'Ross listened for a moment and could hear the man whimpering with anger.  He did not turn back.  Enough had been said for one day. He took a deep breath.  He found his muscles were tensed, as if they had known him to be in danger.'

This is part II of Chapter 8 in Book 1.

I am interested to know if all that is on Kindle, because it doesn't appear in any other version apart from the Ward Lock First Edition and the House of Stratus book.  If it has been included on Kindle, I wonder if any other of the excised copy has.  It needs checking. 

A few years ago, new editions of the first couple of books appeared in my local bookshop.  They were bound in faux leather, with a classy looking dust jacket and gold edged pages.  On the cover it stated 'complete and unabridged'.  I had a quick look through RP and it was exactly the same as the PanMacmillan paperbacks in content - ie the heavily edited version. It is as though the First Editions have never existed - no editing seems ever to have been acknowledged except by contributors here. 

Such a shame because the difference in reading the original first two books is akin to seeing the complete TV series, as opposed to the shortened version those abroad get.

 

 


 Mrs Gimlett - Recently someone told me that they thought the House of Stratus edition of 'Ross Poldark' wasn't entirely a first edition. Do you know if this is true? 

As soon as I get time I shall be going through H of S 'Ross' to check but it will be a time consuming exercise.



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I have just been reading all the posts on this thread and am now curious.

Dark Mare, you say that the chapter about Reuben Clemmow is on the Kindle edition of Ross Poldark.  Just to be quite sure we're talking about the same thing this is how the chapter begins.

'He walked over on the following Sunday to see Reuben Clemmow.  It was about five o'clock in the afternoon.  Faces in the cottages watched him go.

He knocked upon the door...'

and concludes with

'Ross listened for a moment and could hear the man whimpering with anger.  He did not turn back.  Enough had been said for one day. He took a deep breath.  He found his muscles were tensed, as if they had known him to be in danger.'

This is part II of Chapter 8 in Book 1.

I am interested to know if all that is on Kindle, because it doesn't appear in any other version apart from the Ward Lock First Edition and the House of Stratus book.  If it has been included on Kindle, I wonder if any other of the excised copy has.  It needs checking. 

A few years ago, new editions of the first couple of books appeared in my local bookshop.  They were bound in faux leather, with a classy looking dust jacket and gold edged pages.  On the cover it stated 'complete and unabridged'.  I had a quick look through RP and it was exactly the same as the PanMacmillan paperbacks in content - ie the heavily edited version. It is as though the First Editions have never existed - no editing seems ever to have been acknowledged except by contributors here. 

Such a shame because the difference in reading the original first two books is akin to seeing the complete TV series, as opposed to the shortened version those abroad get.

 

 



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I found another 1st ed. detail. 

After Charles falls ill at GC's christening party, Ross goes to the library while waiting to see if he will regain consciousness. One of the books he finds while browsing the shelves is: An Account and Description of an improved Steam Engine, which will, with the same Quantity of Fuel and an equal Space of Time, raise above double the Quantity of Water than any Lever Engine of the same Dimensions, by S.D. Falck.

Also interesting is that Ross finds two books that Elizabeth brought with her to Trenwith. One was Thoughts upon Slavery, by John Wesley. I always thought E was deeper than most people assumed.    

RP, Ward Lock, 184. 



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Don't you love how WG pays back those who gossip eventually? 
 
Page 139, "The Angry Tide" (from the guest list for George's party for John Robinson) 

Dr Choake very lame these days and only really comfortable on a horse with his feather-brained lisping wife Polly, who now wore a wig to cover her greying hair and was indulging so gossips said in an affaire with her groom.

 

 

 

P.S. Thanks, Mrs. G. That chapter is also in the Kindle edition so I'm not as out of the loop as I thought.

 



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I have always read that comment by Choake as being him putting his foot in it about Ross and Jinny.  For some unaccountable reason, all the villagers knew how Benjy Ross came by his scar, but preferred the old wives tale about Benjy being Ross' son. This became entrenched in the common lore of the area. Individuals (like Mark Daniel) gave lie to the slander when challenged, but collectively it still persisted.

 

Dark Mare - there is no more information in the first edition about the aftermath of Clemmow's attack.  There is, however, a complete chapter when Ross visits Reuben in his stinking cottage and warns him not to follow or do anything to Jinny.

 



-- Edited by Mrs Gimlett on Wednesday 25th of October 2017 09:09:45 AM

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I am not fortunate enough to have a first edition of "Ross Poldark" and have wondered whether WG previously wrote more on Reuben Clemmow's late-night visit to the Carters' cottage than what I find in my Kindle copy of the book (below). Did Dr. Choake treat Jinny and the baby that night, for example? 
 
 
Page 204, "Ross Poldark"

By the light of the candle he carried, it was possible to see the changes that months of living in lonely caves had brought. The flesh had shrunk from face and arms. He was in rags and barefoot, his beard and hair straggling and wet as if he had come from some underwater cave. Yet it was the same Reuben Clemmow she had always known, with the pale self-centered eyes and the uncertain mouth and the white creases in the sun-reddened face. 
She fought down a wave of illness and stared at him. 
Wheres my fry pan? he said. Stole my fry pan. 
The child in her arms wriggled and gasped for breath and began to cry again. 
Reuben climbed up the steps, and the trap door slammed back into place. For the first time he saw the bundle she clutched. Recognition of her was slow in dawning. When it came, all the rest came with it, remembrance of the injury done him, of why he was forced to shun people and frequent his cottage only at night, of the ten-month-old wound still festering in his side, of his lust for her, of his hatred for the man who had given her the squealing infant: Ross Poldark. 
"Lily, he muttered. White lily sin 
He had been so long apart from people that he had lost the faculty of making them understand. Speech was for him alone. 
He straightened himself awkwardly, for the muscles had contracted about the wound. Jinny was praying again. 
He took a step forward. Pure Lily he said, and then something in the girls attitude sent his brain clicking over upon an old forgotten rhythm of his childhood. Why standest thou so far off an hidest thy face in the needful time o trouble. The ungodly for is own lust doth persecute; let im be taken in the crafty wiliness that they ave imagined. For the ungodlyth made a boast of his hearts desire, an speaketh good of the covetous. He took out his knife, an old trappers knife, with the blade worn down to about four inches from years of sharpening and use. In the months of isolation desire for her had become confused with revenge. In lust there is always conquest and destruction. 
The candle began to tremble and he put it on the floor, where the draft blew the light in gusts about the room and sweated tallow on the boards. He sittest lurkin in the thievish corners o the streets, and privily in is lurkin dens doth e murder the innocent. 
Jinny lost her head and began to scream. Her voice went up and up. 
As he took another step forward, she forced her legs to move. She was halfway across the bed when Reuben caught her and stabbed at the child. She partly parried the blow, but the knife came away red. 
The girls scream changed its note, became more animal in sound. Reuben stared at the knife with passionate interest, then recovered himself as she reached the trap door. She turned as he came rushing up. He stabbed at her and felt the knife go into her. Then inside him all that had been tense and hard and burning suddenly ran away through his veins. He dropped the knife and watched her fall. 
An extra gust of wind blew the candle out. He shouted and groped for the trap door. His foot slipped on something greasy and his hand touched a womans hair. He recoiled and screamed, banged on the boarding of the room, but he was shut in forever with the horror he had created. 
He pulled himself upward by the bed, blundered across the room, and found the shutters of the window. Shouting, he fought with them but could not find the bolt. Then he thrust forward his whole weight and the fastenings gave way before him. With a sense of breaking from a prison, he fell forward out of the window, out of the prison, out of life, upon the cobbles below.

 



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Hi Brightgirl, thanks so much!

I believe you might have solved the mystery about the origin of the rumors about Ross and Jinny.  People probably did assume that Ross was like Joshua, especially with the rumors about Demelza already widely accepted as truth.  Choake and his silly wife would have helped spread the gossip. 

I agree that others' perspectives are helpful. 



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Hi Hollyhock, I always enjoy reading your comments and thoughts.

I recently read this section again but I took it a different way.  I thought Choake was implying that Ross had cuckolded Jim (if that is how you phrase it).  In other words,

Ross had had an affair with Jinny. I know after Julia was born Jud implied Benjamin Ross was Ross' child because of the scar on Benjamin Ross' face which he had suffered from the knife wound when Clemmow cut him when attacking Jinny.  And of course, at the time of this comment by Choake, rumors were already circulating about Ross and Demelza.  But, at the same time, I don't know why anyone would have thought there was something going on between Ross and Jinny specifically. Perhaps people just assumed Ross would turn out to be like his father Joshua.

But your interpretation may be correct.  This is why I enjoy reading everyone's comments so much.  Every time I read and reread these books I discover something new or even interpret something a different way myself.



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Stella-that is hilarious! biggrin

Thanks!

 



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Hollyhock wrote:

Thanks Stella, you're right! That's what I get for drinking port while reading. It muddles the brain.smile


Hollyhock -  I'm so relieved to read your post as I thought it was me that was missing something wink



-- Edited by Stella Poldark on Monday 23rd of October 2017 07:49:49 PM

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Thanks Stella, you're right! That's what I get for drinking port while reading. It muddles the brain.smile



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Hollyhock wrote:

This one made me drop my bottle of port. When Jim Carter, Ross' former farm hand, is caught poaching on Bodrugan land he is sent to Truro for prosecution. Ross asks surgeon Choake, who treats Jim's lung disease, to testify on Jim's behalf stating phthisis as a reason for leniency. In WL Book 1 they then have the following exchange.

Choake says, "No good will come of being sentimental about such folk. Why don't you let the little cuckold take his medicine?"

"Why do you call him that?" Ross's expression was at its most discouraging.

The doctor looked uneasy. "Don't know. Don't know at all. Just an expression. One is always hearing idle gossip."

"What gossip?"

"Oh nothing at all. We was confusing two people. In this case it was a figure of speech. But I'll set you out a note of what I've said about the boy. Signed with my own hand and sealed like a writ. That will be just as good as going there and standing in the box like a felon. We couldn't do that."

Ross grudgingly accepted. The surgeon seemed suddenly anxious to placate him. (229-230)

Given his guilty reaction, I believe Choake was implying that Jim was a product of Joshua's indiscriminate philandering. Of course the dates don't seem right; Jim was only 3 or 4 years younger than Ross and Joshua would have been happily married when Jim was born. But I'm wondering if that was the rumor the gossipy Choake was helping to perpetuate--that Jim was Ross's half sibling.

Although he himself had no suspicions along those lines, Ross was very fond of Jim. People might have taken his fondness as sign of relationship. But putting Jim aside, I'd be surprised if Joshua had not fathered illegitimate children.

 

 


 My understanding of the meaning of 'cuckold' is a man whose wife deceives him by having a sexual relationship with another man. So Choake is suggesting that Jinny has been unfaithful to Jim. This allegation is never mentioned again in the books that I can recall so it sounds like someone has spread malicious gossip about Jinny. Who, I wonder, would do that.



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This one made me drop my bottle of port. When Jim Carter, Ross' former farm hand, is caught poaching on Bodrugan land he is sent to Truro for prosecution. Ross asks surgeon Choake, who treats Jim's lung disease, to testify on Jim's behalf stating phthisis as a reason for leniency. In WL Book 1 they then have the following exchange.

Choake says, "No good will come of being sentimental about such folk. Why don't you let the little cuckold take his medicine?"

"Why do you call him that?" Ross's expression was at its most discouraging.

The doctor looked uneasy. "Don't know. Don't know at all. Just an expression. One is always hearing idle gossip."

"What gossip?"

"Oh nothing at all. We was confusing two people. In this case it was a figure of speech. But I'll set you out a note of what I've said about the boy. Signed with my own hand and sealed like a writ. That will be just as good as going there and standing in the box like a felon. We couldn't do that."

Ross grudgingly accepted. The surgeon seemed suddenly anxious to placate him. (229-230)

Given his guilty reaction, I believe Choake was implying that Jim was a product of Joshua's indiscriminate philandering. Of course the dates don't seem right; Jim was only 3 or 4 years younger than Ross and Joshua would have been happily married when Jim was born. But I'm wondering if that was the rumor the gossipy Choake was helping to perpetuate--that Jim was Ross's half sibling.

Although he himself had no suspicions along those lines, Ross was very fond of Jim. People might have taken his fondness as sign of relationship. But putting Jim aside, I'd be surprised if Joshua had not fathered illegitimate children.

 

 



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Mrs Gimlett wrote:

Stella, I don't think Ross was destitute on his return to Cornwall.  Even if you read the edited books, it is plain he has some money in the bank, for he buys Darkie, some livestock and engages workers; replaces some of the household items Jud and Prudie had misused and orders liquor from the free-traders.  What is missing from either version is anything relating to the Grambler shares.  The only mention is in the Prologue, and thereafter it is forgotten.  Perhaps it is as well he wasn't relying on the income from his uncle's mine...


As you say - Mrs G - Ross was not destitute  and I had forgotten that Pearce told him that his father had left him a few hundred pounds. Yes it is odd that the Grambler shares are mentioned only in the Prologue and he would have received a small sum from them I imagine, if only for a short time. Thank you for reminding me. I am just coming to the end of my re-reading of the first edition Ross Poldark and it has reminded just how little of this book was included in series one of the latest productions.



-- Edited by Stella Poldark on Wednesday 11th of October 2017 12:18:31 PM

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Stella, I don't think Ross was destitute on his return to Cornwall.  Even if you read the edited books, it is plain he has some money in the bank, for he buys Darkie, some livestock and engages workers; replaces some of the household items Jud and Prudie had misused and orders liquor from the free-traders.  What is missing from either version is anything relating to the Grambler shares.  The only mention is in the Prologue, and thereafter it is forgotten.  Perhaps it is as well he wasn't relying on the income from his uncle's mine...



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Hollyhock wrote:

I've been browsing a WL Book 1 (1st ed., 2nd printing) and comparing it to one of the later versions. I agree with Mrs Gimlett that WL makes for a richer reading experience.

Regarding the Grambler shares, even though there's no mention of it, I assumed Ross received his dividends until the mine failed. Even more noteworthy, I don't recall any mention of the Mellin tenents paying him rent. (Jim offered at one point but Ross refused). But he was probably receiving that revenue as well--I can't imagine he would allow Nick Vigus to live rent free. (Until Ross returned, Jud probably collected and used that money for his gin supply ) At any rate, those two incomes, no matter how meager, would have helped Ross restore Nampara. He had money to pay Jim and he must have paid the little Martin children something for all their hard work in clearing the Nampara fields. He also had money to restock the farm and replenish his wardrobe (and, ahem, pay a certain lady for her services).

But Joshua did not leave Ross destitute. (Here's where WL is more detailed.) When Notary Pearce was apprising Ross of his inheritance, he said Joshua left him several hundred on deposit at Pasco's bank. (Later, that must have seemed like a fortune when Ross had to struggle so desperately to pay the scheming Warleggans their extortionate interest on his loan.)  Anyway, by the time he re-opened Leisure Ross seemed comfortable.

I also found it incredible that the first night Ross returned to the defiled Nampara he found dogs in the house (again WL). When trying to locate Jud and Prudie, "half a dozen big curs leaped nosily at him" from the still-room door. We know Jud hated dogs so it was odd that he allowed Prudie to keep them in the house. These dogs were not mentioned again (I totally forgot about them!) until Demelza brought Garrick along with her to Nampara. Ross wondered at the time what Prudie's reaction would be since he had "insisted on getting rid of all the lost curs to which she had given a home."

Love discovering these details.


 Hollyhock - you are experiencing the delights that the original edition of Ross Poldark gives to the reader. There is so much more information in the ward Lock books as you are discovering. Before I read the originals I wondered about a lot of things, especially how Ross was managing to even buy food when he first came back to Cornwall. It is also made clear, I recall, that Jud and Prudie were paid to look after Nampara in Ross's absence. It is like reading a different book!



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I've been browsing a WL Book 1 (1st ed., 2nd printing) and comparing it to one of the later versions. I agree with Mrs Gimlett that WL makes for a richer reading experience.

Regarding the Grambler shares, even though there's no mention of it, I assumed Ross received his dividends until the mine failed. Even more noteworthy, I don't recall any mention of the Mellin tenents paying him rent. (Jim offered at one point but Ross refused). But he was probably receiving that revenue as well--I can't imagine he would allow Nick Vigus to live rent free. (Until Ross returned, Jud probably collected and used that money for his gin supply ) At any rate, those two incomes, no matter how meager, would have helped Ross restore Nampara. He had money to pay Jim and he must have paid the little Martin children something for all their hard work in clearing the Nampara fields. He also had money to restock the farm and replenish his wardrobe (and, ahem, pay a certain lady for her services).

But Joshua did not leave Ross destitute. (Here's where WL is more detailed.) When Notary Pearce was apprising Ross of his inheritance, he said Joshua left him several hundred on deposit at Pascoe's bank. (Later, that must have seemed like a fortune when Ross had to struggle so desperately to pay the scheming Warleggans their extortionate interest on his loan.)  Anyway, by the time he re-opened Leisure Ross seemed comfortable.

I also found it incredible that the first night Ross returned to the defiled Nampara he found dogs in the house (again WL). When trying to locate Jud and Prudie, "half a dozen big curs leaped nosily at him" from the still-room door. We know Jud hated dogs so it was odd that he allowed Prudie to keep them in the house. These dogs were not mentioned again (I totally forgot about them!) until Demelza brought Garrick along with her to Nampara. Ross wondered at the time what Prudie's reaction would be since he had "insisted on getting rid of all the lost curs to which she had given a home."

Love discovering these details.



-- Edited by Hollyhock on Wednesday 11th of October 2017 09:30:09 PM

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In chapter 4 part 2 of Book one we are treated to a tour of Nampara. It begins with a comment from Charles when he was first shown round. He said that it had as many unexpected features as a cross between a bloodhound and a poodle bitch. This was half truth, half brotherly spite." It continues with "the library, which made a single story west wing for the house, had never been finished: money had given out, and what was to have been a show feature had instead become a draughty shuttered barn in which Joshua,a great hoarder, had come to store the rubbish of a lifetime."

There is much more information about Nampara that gives the reader a wonderful feel of the house but even in this small piece I have quoted there is much information about the library which features a lot throughout the books and we learn a bit more about Joshua. It continues with more descriptions of Nampara and snippets of information about Joshua so that the reader is well informed about the house and can form a picture of it in their mind. There is also dialogue between Jud and Ross about some furniture which had been moved and now brought back by Jud. All this and more gives us important information, not only about the house but what has happened in it since Ross left for America. It also includes information about Elizabeth's letters to Ross and the possibility of letters being lost.

I hope I have given enough information to whet the appetite for first edition copies of the first four books.

 



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Dark Mare wrote:

It would have made more sense for Charles to have bought Ross' shares of the mine. That would have given Ross some cash to get started on -- and given him one fewer reason to visit Trenwith after Francis and Elizabeth were married.


Possibly but at what point would Charles have bought Ross' shares of the mine.... ?



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Mrs Gimlett wrote:

Ah, yes, the original.  So much more rounded than later editions.  I love the fuller descriptions of the Nampara area, the house itself and of Francis and Elizabeth's wedding. 

The latter shows Francis did love Elizabeth at the time of their marriage and probably would have continued to she had only encouraged him. 

To start at the beginning, though,  and that small piece in the Prologue, when Joshua tells his brother that his shares in Grambler will go to Verity if Ross fails to return has always intrigued me.  There is no other mention of it and however little the shares may have brought in, it would have been very helpful to Ross in his quest to renovate house and land.  Perhaps it ceased as Grambler mine itself slowly wound down and eventually closed.  However, there are a few years of prosperity for the Trenwith Poldarks before that, when Ross might have expected some return.  Do you think Charles rescinded the shares on Joshua's death?


It would have made more sense for Charles to have bought Ross' shares of the mine. That would have given Ross some cash to get started on -- and given him one fewer reason to visit Trenwith after Francis and Elizabeth were married.



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Good question Mrs. G.

I think Charles (as presumably executor or would it have been Pearce back then ?) might well have rescinded the shares after Joshua died as I'm pretty sure he was already determined on arranging a marriage between Francis and Elizabeth, wanting Elizabeth to have further evidence that Ross was hard up and therefore quite unsuitable for her. In addition he had probably already made sure that Verity would have been well provided for anyway.

As a side issue it would seem probate didn't become law until 1858 which I'm sure WG would have already checked first in any case.

http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/help-with-your-research/research-guides/wills-or-administrations-after-1858/

However one thought has just crossed my mind. In the last paragraph in Chapter 1 Nat Pearce says he will get a copy of the Will for Ross to take home and read it at his leisure, so surely Joshua would have stipulated the shares were to be left to Ross as well. If so then Charles would have had a lot of explaining to do !



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Ah, yes, the original.  So much more rounded than later editions.  I love the fuller descriptions of the Nampara area, the house itself and of Francis and Elizabeth's wedding. 

The latter shows Francis did love Elizabeth at the time of their marriage and probably would have continued to she had only encouraged him. 

To start at the beginning, though,  and that small piece in the Prologue, when Joshua tells his brother that his shares in Grambler will go to Verity if Ross fails to return has always intrigued me.  There is no other mention of it and however little the shares may have brought in, it would have been very helpful to Ross in his quest to renovate house and land.  Perhaps it ceased as Grambler mine itself slowly wound down and eventually closed.  However, there are a few years of prosperity for the Trenwith Poldarks before that, when Ross might have expected some return.  Do you think Charles rescinded the shares on Joshua's death?

 



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Discussions about Ward Lock Book 1 - Ross Poldark.



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