Poems. (Privately Printed.): A Proof (partial), Princeton/Troxell (copy 1)

Dante Gabriel Rossetti

Production Description

Document Title: [Untitled]
Author: Dante Gabriel Rossetti
Printer: Strangeways and Walden
City of publication: London
Date of publication: 1869 September 13
Edition: proof
Pre-Publication Information: This is a partial set of the A Proofs
Pagination: [1]-4, [7]-14, 17-18, 17-18 (duplicate), 19-20, 23-24 (duplicate), 23-30, 39-40, 39-40 (duplicate), 43-44, 49-54, 59-66, 65-66 (revise), 73-75, 80, 82-83, 89, 95, 100-101, 106, 109-110, 115-116, 119-123, 128-131, 133-135, 141-142, 142 (revise), 144, 147-148, 151-152, 155-156, 165-166.
Authorization: DGR
Collation: [A] 2; B-O 8; P 7
Note on Publication: The ideal copy of this proof state would be paginated [i-iv], [1]-166. The collation given here is also ideal. The pagination is at the center top.
Corrector: DGR


Current Location: Troxell Collection, Princeton University
Catalog Number: 23299
Note: The proof comes ultimately from the poet's library; thence through WMR to A. L. and Joseph Knight and then to Jerome Kern, from whom Mrs. Troxell purchased it at the Kern sale. It came to Princeton in 1972 with the Troxell Collection.

Physical Description

Point: 8
Lines per Page: 29
Dimensions of Document: crown octavo, 18.5 x 12cm


  • Wise, The Ashley Library, IV. 124-125.
  • Troxell, “The Trial Books”, 192.
  • Fraser, “The Rossetti Collection of Janet Camp Troxell”, 160-161.
  • Lewis, The Trial Book Fallacy , 186.
  • Burnett, The Ashley Catalogue, I. 75-76.

Scholarly Commentary


This is a partial copy of the A Proofs, which Lewis (page 186) calls proof state 3. This copy is heavily marked up with corrections and directions to the printer by DGR. There is another copy in the Troxell collection, also incomplete.

Along with the A2 Proofs, the A Proofs comprise a volatile moment in the prepublication sequence of printings. They followed quickly one upon the other, and together represent DGR's initial revisions to the Penkill Proofs, which were printed about 18 August. DGR received the A Proofs on 13 September 1869 and immediately was working on them (see Fredeman, Correspondence, 69.154). He completed his revisions while he was at Penkill, and returned to London on 20 September. The A2 Proofs, with the additions and corrections, were pulled about 21 September.

A perfect copy of the A Proofs exists—WMR's copy. It is in the library of Simon Nowell-Smith (the copy sold at Christie's on 29 July 1871; lot 456).

Textual History: Revision

The duplicate proof pages in this document show that DGR called for revisions of the proof. The brief period separating the printing of the A and the A2 proofs thus shows clearly DGR's use of the printing process as a vehicle in his composition process. Furthermore, the handwritten signature and pagination on Q1 strongly suggests that DGR scarcely distinguished the A from the A2 proofs, and that he used both in his dealings with his printers, in repaginating and reorganizing his evolving book.

Printing History

As with the Penkill Proofs, the poems each begin on a separate recto page (see Fredeman, Correspondence, 69.117), a printing procedure DGR had specifically called for.

Electronic Archive Edition: 1
Copyright: Used with permission of Princeton University. From the Princeton University Library, Department of Rare Books and Special Collections. All rights reserved. Redistribution or republication in any medium requires express written consent from Princeton University Library. Permissions inquiries should be addressed to Associate University Librarian, Rare Books and Special Collections, Princeton University Library.