The Hogarth Press was a British publishing house founded in 1917 by Leonard Woolf and Virginia Woolf. It was named after their house in Richmond (then in Surrey and now in London), in which they began hand-printing books.
Hogarth House, 34 Paradise Road, Richmond, London
|Status||Owned by Random House|
|Founder||Leonard Woolf and Virginia Woolf|
|Successor||Chatto & Windus|
|Country of origin||United Kingdom|
During the interwar period, the Hogarth Press grew from a hobby of the Woolfs to a business when they began using commercial printers. In 1938 Virginia Woolf relinquished her interest in the business and it was then run as a partnership by Leonard Woolf and John Lehmann until 1946, when it became an associate company of Chatto & Windus. "Hogarth" is now an imprint of The Crown Publishing Group, part of Random House Inc.
As well as publishing the works of the members of the Bloomsbury group, the Hogarth Press was at the forefront of publishing works on psychoanalysis and translations of foreign, especially Russian, works.
Printing was a hobby for the Woolfs, and it provided a diversion for Virginia when writing became too stressful. The couple bought a handpress in 1917 for £19 (equivalent to about £900 in 2012) and taught themselves how to use it. The press was set up in the dining room of Hogarth House, where the Woolfs lived, lending its name to the publishing company they founded. In July they published their first text, a book with one story written by Leonard and the other written by Virginia.
Between 1917 and 1946 the Press published 527 titles.
Hogarth Press has begun producing a series of modern retellings of William Shakespeare plays, for which it has hired a variety of authors, such as Jeanette Winterson, Howard Jacobson, Anne Tyler, Margaret Atwood, Tracy Chevalier and Edward St Aubyn for The Winter's Tale, The Merchant of Venice, The Taming of the Shrew, The Tempest, Othello and King Lear respectively.
|Number of publications by year from 1917 to 1946|
|Profit generated by the Hogarth Press publication (without bonuses and salaries)|
|Profit||£13 8s 8d||£13 14s 2d||£68 19s 4d||£25 5s 6d||£10 6s 4d||£5 7s 8d||£3 17s 0d||£73 1s 1.5d||£26 19s 1d||£64 2s 0d||£380 16s 0d||£580 14s 8d||£2,373 4s 2.5d||£2,209 0s 1.5d||£1,693 4s 1d||£929 15s 2.5d||£516 13s 0d||£598 7s 2d||£84 5s 0d||£2,422 18s 5d||£35 7s 7d|
The Hogarth Press produced a number of publication series that were affordable as well as being attractively bound and printed, and usually commissioned from well known authors. These include the initial Hogarth Essays in three series 1924–1947 (36 titles), Hogarth Lectures on Literature (2 series 1927–1951), Merttens Lectures on War and Peace (8 titles 1927–1936), Hogarth Living Poets (29 titles 1928–1937), Day to Day Pamphlets (1930–1939), Hogarth Letters (12 titles 1931–1933) and World-Makers and World-Shakers (4 titles 1937).
The Essays were the first series produced by the press and include works by Virginia Woolf, Leonard Woolf and Gertrude Stein. Virginia Woolf's defence of modernism, Mr. Bennett and Mrs. Brown (1924) was the initial publication in the series. Cover illustrations were by Vanessa Bell.
The Letters are less well known and are in the form of epistolary letters. Authors include E.M. Forster and Virginia Woolf. Woolf's A Letter to a Young Poet (1932), was number 8, and addressed to John Lehmann as an exposition on modern poetry. Cover illustrations were by John Banting. In 1933, the entire series was reissued as a single volume, and are available on the Internet Archive in a 1986 edition.
- A letter to Madam Blanchard, E. M. Forster (1931)
- A letter to an M.P. on disarmament, Robert Gascoyne-Cecil, 1st Viscount Cecil of Chelwood (1931)
- A letter to a sister, Rosamond Lehmann (1931)
- The French pictures: a letter to Harriet, Robert Mortimer and John Banting (1932)
- A letter from a black sheep, Francis Birrell (1932)
- A letter to W.B. Yeats, L. A. G. Strong (1932)
- A letter to a grandfather, Rebecca West (1933)
- A letter to a young poet, Virginia Woolf (1932)
- A letter to a modern novelist, Hugh Walpole (1932)
- A letter to an archbishop, J. C. Hardwick (1932)
- A letter to Adolf Hitler, Louis Golding (1932)
- A letter to Mrs. Virginia Woolf, Peter Quennell (1932)
Notable title historyEdit
- Monday or Tuesday by Virginia Woolf, with woodcuts by Vanessa Bell
- Jacob's Room (1922) by Virginia Woolf; the first of her novels published by The Hogarth Press
- The Devils (1922) by Dostoyevsky – co-translated by Virginia Woolf
- The Waste Land by T. S. Eliot (1924) – first UK book edition
- The Common Reader (1925) by Virginia Woolf
- Karn (1922) and Martha Wish-You-Ill (1926) – poetry by Ruth Manning-Sanders
- Orlando (1928) by Virginia Woolf
- The Waves (1931) by Virginia Woolf
- In a Province (1934) – first book by Laurens van der Post
- Twilight in Delhi (1940) by Ahmed Ali
- Loving by Henry Green (1945)
- The Standard Edition of the Complete Psychological Works of Sigmund Freud (1956–1974), in collaboration with Anna Freud
- The Four Fundamental Concepts of Psychoanalysis (1977) by Jacques Lacan, his first published Seminar.
- Jaillant, Lise (17 April 2017). Cheap Modernism: Expanding Markets, Publishers' Series and the Avant-Garde. Edinburgh University Press. ISBN 978-1-4744-1724-2.
- 'Classics behind Plate Glass': the Hogarth Press and the Uniform Edition of the Works of Virginia Woolf. pp. 120–139.
- Southworth, Helen, ed. (2012). Leonard and Virginia Woolf, The Hogarth Press and the Networks of Modernism. Edinburgh University Press. ISBN 978-0-7486-6921-9.
- Woolf, Leonard; Woolf, Virginia, eds. (1933). The Hogarth Letters. Hogarth Press.
- Lee, Hermione, ed. (1986). The Hogarth Letters. Athens, Georgia: University of Georgia Press.
- "Hogarth Press: The Series". Special Collections Department. University of Delaware Library. 2010. Retrieved 4 April 2018.
- "A Letter to a Young Poet". New York: B & B Rare Books. 2018. Retrieved 6 April 2018.
- Gaither, Mary E. "The Hogarth Press 1917–1946" pp. xvii–xxxiv in J. Howard Woolmer (1986), A checklist of the Hogarth Press 1917–1946, Woolmer Brotherson Ltd. ISBN 0-906795-38-9.
- Willis, J. H. (1992), Leonard and Virginia Woolf as Publishers: The Hogarth Press, 1917–41, University Press of Virginia. ISBN 0-8139-1361-6.
- Woolmer, J. Howard "Publications of The Hogarth Press" pp. 3–178 in J. Howard Woolmer (1986), A checklist of the Hogarth Press 1917–1946, Woolmer Brotherson Ltd. ISBN 0-906795-38-9.
- Kennedy, Richard. A Boy at the Hogarth Press (1972. Whittington Press.) Hesperus Press Ltd ISBN 978-184391-461-7
- Spater, George; Parsons, Ian A Marriage of True Minds: An Intimate Portrait of Leonard and Virginia Woolf (1977. London: J. Cape.) Harvest/HBJ paperback ISBN 0-15-657299-0
- Woolmer, J. Howard. A Checklist of the Hogarth Press, 1917–1938 (1976) [With a short history of the press by Mary E. Gaither] Woolmer/Brotherson, 1986, 250 p.: ISBN 0-913506-17-6 (compare Hogarth Press Publications, 1917–1946 at Duke University Library that uses the numbering of the Woolmer publication)
- "Virginia Woolf, the Hogarth Press, and the detective novel" (PDF), essay by Diane F. Gillespie in the South Carolina Review, volume 35.2 (Spring 2003).
- A detailed account of the Hogarth Press at the Yale Modernism Lab
- The Bloomsbury Group and Hogarth Press Collection at the Victoria University Library at the University of Toronto which features all the Hogarth Press books hand-printed by Leonard and Virginia Woolf including many variant issues, bindings and proof copies. (Records for each item can be found in the University of Toronto Library Catalogue.)
- Archives of The Hogarth Press at Archives Hub