NOTES

CHAPTER ONE
ECONOMY
1. Although the first edition gives the title Walden: or, Life in the Woods, on March 4, 1862, two months before he died, Thoreau wrote to his publishers, Ticknor & Fields, asking them to omit "Or Life in the Woods" from the title of a new edition. They complied with this request, although it has rarely been followed since. Sherman Paul ( The Shores, of America, Urbana, 1958, p. 75) suggests that Thoreau may have dropped the subtitle because he feared his audience was taking it too literally and thus missing the more important philosophy permeating the book.

Although a book by J. T. Headley entitled The Adirondack: or Life in the Woods( New York, 1849) preceded Walden by five years, it seems unlikely that it was the source of Thoreau's subtitle, for its preface is dated March 31, 1849, and Thoreau's A Week was published in May, 1849, with the appended announcement that Walden: or, Life in the Woods would soon be published. A Week had been set up in type for at least five months before publication since its page proofs are copyrighted 1848.

A possible source of this subtitle of Walden is the essay by Charles Lane in the Dial, IV ( 1844), 415, entitled "Life in the Woods".

The drawing of Thoreau's cabin was made by his sister Sophia. It was described by Ellery Channing as "a feeble caricature" of the building. Another drawing by an eyewitness, that published in the "Thoreau Annex" of the Concord Freeman in the 1880's (reprinted in TSB 23 [ 1948]) shows the cabin in the middle of an open field.

The quotation is from the second chapter of Walden. It is omitted from the title page of many modern editions, and unfortunately so, for it sets the mood for the entire book. John C. Broderick, in "Imagery in Walden", ( UTSE XXXIII [ 1954], 80-89), points out how this awakening and morning theme is a basic image carried throughout the book.

A possible source for Thoreau's idea is Orestes Brownson's statement in his Boston Quarterly Review in 1838 that he "aimed to startle, and made it a point to be as paradoxical and extravagant as he could."

The Bibliophile Edition of Walden includes a facsimile of a manuscript title page by Thoreau which includes a drawing of Chanticleer and the following quotation from Saadi: "The clouds, wind, moon, sun and sky, act in cooperation, that thou mayest get thy daily bread, and not eat it with indifference; all render for thy sake, and are obedient to command; it must be an equitable condition, that thou shall be obedient also."

2. Although Thoreau is undoubtedly referring to many direct inquiries, some of which he describes later in the book, he is also probably referring

-267-

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The Variorum Walden
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page 3
  • Acknowledgments 7
  • Contents 9
  • A Note on the Text 11
  • Introduction 13
  • Chapter One - Economy 25
  • Chapter Two - Where I Lived, And What I Lived For 82
  • Chapter Three - Reading 96
  • Chapter Four - Sounds 105
  • Chapter Five - Solitude 118
  • Chapter Six - Visitors 126
  • Chapter Seven - The Bean-Field 137
  • Chapter Eight - The Village 146
  • Chapter Nine - The Ponds 151
  • Chapter Ten - Baker Farm 171
  • Chapter Eleven - Higher Laws 177
  • Chapter Twelve - Brute Neighbors 187
  • Chapter Thirteen - House-Warming 198
  • Chapter Fourteen - Former Inhabitants; And Winter Visitors 211
  • Chapter Fifteen - Winter Animals 222
  • Chapter Sixteen - The Pond in Winter 230
  • Chapter Seventeen - Spring 242
  • Conclusion 257
  • Notes 267
  • Bibliography 320
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