The Popular Encyclopedia or Conversations Lexicon was a British encyclopedia that was published from 1837 to 1893 by Blackie and Son, of Glasgow. It was originally a reprint of Francis Lieber's Encyclopedia Americana, itself based on the Brockhaus Enzyklopädie.
A new edition was published in 1841, this time omitting the reference to the Americana in the subtitle. Further seven volume editions were published in 1862 and 1877 under the editorship of Alexander Whitelaw. In 1882 the set was taken over by Charles Annandale whose edition of 1890-93 was expanded to 14 volumes.
In 1889-1890 Blackie and Son also published Blackies Modern Cyclopaedia of Universal Information, also edited by Annandale. The relationship between this work and the above encyclopedias is unclear, but it though that they are closely related.
American editions edit
Meanwhile, in the United States, Gebbie and Company published a version of Blackies with the title New Cabinet Encyclopedia and Treasury of Knowledge with the American-related articles revised and edited by Ainsworth Rand Spofford. It then was republished under different titles and various imprints as the New National Encyclopedia and Treasury (Brown, Edgar and Hull, 1899), XX Century Cyclopedia (Gebbie 1901), New Twentieth Century Encyclopedia and Dictionary (E. R. Dumont 1903) which included two volumes of a biographical dictionary "living Americans" and two volumes of an English dictionary, bringing the total number of volumes to 12, New and Complete Universal Self Pronouncing Encyclopedia, in the original 8 volume format, (International Press, 1905), New Cosmopolitan Encyclopedia (Thompson, 1906) and New Encyclopedia of Reference (Standard Bookbinnding 1912) 
- The popular encyclopedia; being a general dictionary of arts, sciences, literature, biography, history, and political economy. Reprinted from the American edition of the "Conversations lexicon", with corrections and additions Glasgow, 1837- p.3
- The Popular Encyclopedia, or "Conversations Lexicon" Glasgow, etc. Blackie & Son 1841 title page
- S. Padraig Walsh Anglo-American general encyclopedias 1703-1967 New York and London; R.R. Bowser Company 1968 p.146; Robert Collison Encyclopedias: their history throughout the ages 2nd ed. New York and London; Haffner Publishing Company 1966 p.305. Collison and Walsh differ on the number and dates of publication, Collison giving 1862, 1867-82 and 1877-79, and Walsh giving 1849-50, 1862 and 1877.
- Collison p. 305, Walsh p.146
- Walsh p.12
- Walsh p.12, 112
- The popular encyclopedia; being a general dictionary of arts, sciences, literature, biography, history, and political economy. Reprinted from the American ed. of the "Conversations lexicon," with corrections and additions Glasgow, Blackie 1837 ed.
- The popular encyclopedia; or Conversations Lexicon being a general dictionary of arts, sciences, literature, biography, history, and political economy. Reprinted from the American edition of the "Conversations lexicon," with corrections and additions. Glasgow, etc. Blackie & Son, 1841
- The Popular encyclopedia : or, conversations lexicon : being a general dictionary of arts, sciences, literature, biography, and history, and political economy London : Blackie, 1862. "New and Revised ed." (missing vols. 2 and 5)