In the 1880 edition the following is added :

"Advice. I find that by grotesque mischance, the new preface takes no notice of my reason for printing some passages in the book in a larger type, and numbering them as 'aphorisms.' If the reader will attend to them, he will find their serviceableness and security justify this preference ; and, these being first well understood, the rest of the book will become also lucid and cogent : — else it might be taken for a mere mist of fine words, and read — practically — in vain. — Brantwood, Coniston, May 26th, 1880."

Then follows a list of errata which "the reader is requested to note and correct at once," and which are corrected, of course, in all the editions since 1880. For list of them, see above, Bibliographical Note, p. liii. A note at the top of the MS. of this preface shows that it was " knocked off before breakfast." Much of Ruskin's work was done in the early morning : see Præterita, ii. ch. vi. 122, and Eagle's Nest, 104.]

Victorian Overview John Ruskin next

Last modified 15 July 2010