Chapbooks showcase

Chapbooks Collection

J000080512
Book:Glasgow Peggy, To which is added; The favourite ballad of the drowned lovers:[185-?] Book
Catalogue record
Author: Chapbooks Collection
Year: [185-?]
Media class: Book
Publisher: Printed for the booksellers
Resource type: Physical
Note: Chapbook Two copies 556282: Poets' Corner 893174: Robert Davidson Main bequest 556282 893174
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J000232223
Book:Mary the maid of the inn:[184-?] Book
Catalogue record
Author: Chapbooks Collection
Year: [184-?]
Media class: Book
Publisher: J. Ross
Resource type: Physical
Note: Chapbook Two copies Baillie's Collection 1000724b 1000730r
24p, ill ; 17cm
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J000232278
Book:The histoyr [sic] of the seven champions of Christendom, part the first:[182-?] Book
Catalogue record
Author: Chapbooks Collection
Year: [182-?]
Media class: Book
Publisher: Printed and sold in Aldermary Churchyard
Resource type: Physical
Note: Chapbook Baillie's Collection 1000724g
24p, ill ; 16cm
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J000232111
Book:Visits to the island of St. Kilda:[184-?] Book
Catalogue record
Author: Chapbooks Collection
Year: [184-?]
Media class: Book
Publisher: Thomas I. White, printer
Resource type: Physical
Note: Baillie's Collection Chapbook 1000718u
16p ; 17cm
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J000232112
Book:Walter Wathershanks' adventures at Lammas Fair:1881 Book
Catalogue record
Author: Chapbooks Collection
Year: 1881
Media class: Book
Publisher: Southern Reporter Office
Resource type: Physical
Note: Baillie's Collection Chapbook 1000718w
23, [1]p ; 17cm
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J000232113
Book:The Berkshire tragedy, or, The Wittam miller, being an account of his murdering his sweet-heart:[18--?] Book
Catalogue record
Author: Chapbooks Collection
Year: [18--?]
Media class: Book
Publisher: J. Pitts, printer
Resource type: Physical
Note: Broadside Baillie's Collection 1000718x
1. - leaf ; 24x36cm, folded to 16x8cm
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J000232114
Book:The faithless captain, or, Betrayed virgin:[18--?] Book
Catalogue record
Author: Chapbooks Collection
Year: [18--?]
Media class: Book
Publisher: J. Pitts, printer
Resource type: Physical
Note: Broadside Baillie's Collection 1000718y
1. - leaf ; 24x36cm, folded to 16x8cm
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J000232123
Book:The tragedy of Sir James and the rose:[182-?] Book
Catalogue record
Author: Chapbooks Collection
Year: [182-?]
Media class: Book
Publisher: W. Macnie
Resource type: Physical
Note: Chapbook Three copies, one copy in Baillie's Collection 1000725b: Baillie's Collection 1000725b 436442 893261
8p, ill ; 16cm
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J000232124
Book:The history of John Winchcomb, commonly called Jack of Newbury, the famous clothier of England:[182-?] Book
Catalogue record
Author: Chapbooks Collection
Year: [182-?]
Media class: Book
Publisher: T. Maiden, printer
Resource type: Physical
Note: Chapbook Baillie's Collection 1000723
36p, ill ; 16cm
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J000232883
Book:The northern lord, in four parts, giving an account of his good and bad fortune, To which is added, Montelia's charms:1801 Book
Catalogue record
Author: Chapbooks Collection
Year: 1801
Media class: Book
Publisher: J. & M. Robertson
Resource type: Physical
Note: Chapbook 1000754
8p, ill ; 16cm
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Book cover image

Folk in print : Scotland's chapbook heritage, 1750-1850 / Edward J. Cowan and Mike Paterson

The people's print has not so far attracted a serious modern study. In 1874 John Fraser wrote that it was impossible to understand the history of Scotland or the character of her people during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries without studying these 'vulgar, but graphic and intensely Scottish productions', which, in his opinion, could be ranked with such masterpieces as the humorous narratives in The Canterbury Tales. Though not all chapbooks were necessarily humorous, as this selection will demonstrate.

This collection aims to present a user-friendly introduction to the genre, a sampling of the attractions and possibilities, set, where appropriate, in the relevant cultural and historical contexts. The idea is to listen to the voices of the past, not often heard, which yet should be screaming for attention.

The chapbooks are gloriously diverse in content, pointing to an irresistible cacophony of social discourse ranging from the flippant to the portentous, the swooningly romantic to the bluntly pejorative; they are brash and banal, fun, fresh and revealing, often reflecting the sort of flair, wit, insight, sensitivity - and mindlessness - that these days are responsible for so much of our television programming and tabloid newspaper content.

Chapbooks are sometimes loosely themed, but others are collations, with naive romanticism, virulent jingoism, pastoral reverie, love-songs, temperance diatribes, clumsy humour, political satire, ribaldry, misogyny, indecency, comic drinking songs, folktales, superstition and the occult, and a body of vibrant Scots poetry and song from the oral and literary traditions, all available for the mix. This selection is drawn from the period, roughly 1750 to 1850, when the form was at its most prolific and most populist, and literacy was as exciting and undiscriminating as Internet use has become today.

Chapbook

A small, inexpensive stitched book or pamphlet formerly sold by itinerant dealers, or chapmen, in western Europe and in North America. Most chapbooks were 5 1/2 by 4 1/4 inches (14 by 11 cm) in size and were made up of four pages (or multiples of four), illustrated with woodcuts.

They contained tales of popular heroes, legend and folklore, jests, reports of notorious crimes, ballads, almanacs, nursery rhymes, school lessons, farces, biblical tales, dream lore, and other popular matter. The texts were mostly crude and anonymous, but they formed the major part of secular reading and now serve as a guide to the manners and morals of their times.

View the full article in the Gale Literature Resource Center