AUTHOR-CORRECTED ADVANCE ROUGH PROOF OF A. A. MILNE'S COLLECTION OF SHORT STORIES
MILNE, A. A. Birthday Party and Other Stories. London: Methuen & Co., (1949). Small octavo, original pre-publication brown wrappers lettered "Rough Proof." $4200.
Advance page proofs of the first English edition, with extensive corrections on the Foreword in Milne's hand, initialed at the bottom by him.
"Milne acquired several large and distinct audiences in his lifetime" (Stringer, 451). In 1948 the famous author of Winnie-the-Pooh prepared a collection of 15 short stories intended for the adult audience—in keeping with the three earlier collections of his articles from Punch. In his Foreword, he explains that one story in this collection was previously published, and details its history. In his edits, he rewrites several sentences for clarity, and adjusts the Foreword's information for his English audience, as the Foreword was originally written for the American edition. He also adds a poem not previously published, referring to the readers who might have bought the story in its previous publication: "Theirs' not to reason why/ Theirs' but to go and buy." In total he adds or changes 39 words, and deletes 27 words.