THOMAS DE QUINCEY
By JOHN E. JORDAN University of California
DE QUINCEY PRESENTS a special problem to the bibliographer: he himself had no record of his scattered and usually unsigned periodical writings and was not always wise enough a father to recognize his own children. In assembling his Selections he sometimes depended upon the American edition, which had been constructed partly by stylistic identification; he left out many essays--as would be expected in "Selections"--and he or his publisher even included one article which subsequently proved not to be his. There is not, therefore, and probably never will be, an exhaustive bibliography of his writings. The earliest listing is in W. T. Lowndes's The Bibliographer's Manual of English Literature as revised by H. G. Bohn in 1861, which gives the contents of De Quincey's collected edition, part of that of the American edition, and an incomplete record of contributions to the London Magazine, Blackwood's Magazine, and Tait's Magazine. One of the essays here attributed to De Quincey, "Traits and Tendencies of German Literature," is, however, by J. S. Blackie. In an appendix to The Collected Writings of Thomas De Quincey, David Masson provides a useful chronological register of De Quincey's writings as printed in that edition and adds a list of items not included.