The Prince and the Pauper
A Minimal Edition

The Text

Modern editorial theory stipulates that a critical text must place before the reader not only the text itself but the evidence and reasoning used by the editor to establish it. As a first step the editor designates a copy—text, the form of the text to be edited—usually the manuscript or first printing—which, because it is the least corrupt, provides the most satisfactory basis for establishing a text free from unauthorized readings. The editor agrees to follow the copy—text in every particular except where he considers emendation justified or required. And he agrees to report and defend all such emendations, so that a reader may if he chooses reconstruct the base from which the editor has departed. The copy—text therefore becomes the source for nearly every substantive and accidental reading in the critical text, and it largely determines the form of the textual apparatus used to report the editor’s decisions.

Unauthorized changes made by copyists, editors, and compositors are by this means excluded—usually silently—from the text of this edition, while authorized changes in the printer’s copy, proofs, or plates, along with simple corrections supplied by the editor himself, appear in the text as emendations and are so recorded. The copy—text for the present edition is Mark Twain’s manuscript for The Prince and the Pauper. This copy—text has been emended in the following ways:

Substantives (Words and Word Order)

(1) Variants in the first American edition considered to be Mark Twain’s changes in proof are here adopted. Suggestions and alterations made by William Dean Howells and Edward House and introduced into the first American edition were presumably approved by the author and are likewise adopted.

Authorial changes in proof may be detected by analogous changes demonstrably made by Mark Twain in his manuscript (such as the change of “to’t” to “to it,” and “sith” to “since”), by documentary evidence (such as his letter to Benjamin Ticknor about changes of “ ‘tis” to “it is”), or by their length and content—criteria which make it unlikely that a compositor or editor had ventured to risk the author’s wrath by altering his work (such as the omission of manuscript passages at 191.22 and 237.22–23 and the substitution of “bakeries” for “bookstores” at 132.7).

Letters establish that Howells and House suggested numerous changes that Mark Twain solicited and then adopted, presumably in proof. Howells’ substitution of “beating” for “basting” at 115.6 and House’s alterations from “baronet” to “knight” at 144.18 and 145.5 are typical.

(2) Variants in the first American edition that correct simple errors in the manuscript are adopted here. These include corrections of tense and agreement (such as “ordered” for “order” at 328.5 and “houses” for “house” at 49.11), of omitted words and dittography (such as “to and fro” for “to fro” at 107.10 and “after” for “after after” at 324.13), and of misidentification (such as “Hugo” for “Hugh” at 241.3). These corrections would be adopted in any case, but their appearance in the first American edition indicates that the author himself may have supplied them.

(3) Variants in the first American edition that apparently result from errors in transcription or from editorial sophistication are rejected. When it is possible to compare the copy—text with the prospectus, the first American edition, the first English edition, and the first Canadian edition, precise discrimination about even very small variants is possible. For instance, the manuscript reading “splatter” is rejected in favor of the first American edition “spatter” (63.9), because the agreement of the manuscript with the first English edition shows that the manuscript reading was initially typeset correctly and remained unchanged at least through the stage of proof from which the English edition was set, and the change must therefore have been made at a relatively late stage of production, when only an author would think to alter his text.

(4) When Mark Twain transcribed material from a source he often adapted it to fit his text; for instance, he cut inappropriate references to Queen Elizabeth and altered verbs from the past to the present tense in his quotations from Hunt, pp. 143–145. He also made changes that did not materially alter the sense of the passage; for instance, he substituted “from” for “in” in the quotation from Trumbull at 340.7. The copy—text reading is preferred to the original source in every case.

Accidentals (Paragraphing, Punctuation, and Word Forms)

(1) A conservative policy regarding the accidentals of the copy—text has been followed. Old—fashioned spellings (“recal” and “pedlar”) have been retained. Mark Twain’s punctuation has been emended here and there to correct mechanical errors (omitted quotation marks in dialogue, periods instead of question marks), but otherwise has been respected, even when it appears idiosyncratic.

(2) On succeeding stages of his work, Mark Twain often revised italic word forms and exclamation points for emphasis, and such emphasis variants in the first American edition are here adopted as authorial revisions in proof. An exception to this policy is made for nine chapters in the first American edition (1, 3, 5, 7, 8, 9, 10, 30, and 31), because they are so drastically different from the manuscript. The presumption is that in these instances the author’s alterations and the compositor’s unauthorized ones are inextricably tangled. Moreover, Mark Twain’s changes in emphasis there were made in a corrupt text in a vain effort to restore his manuscript punctuation. For example, in chapter 3, where Mark Twain had to turn his “whole attention to restoring” his punctuation, the following emphasis variants occur: lg: l: Manuscript: O, he was a prince! a prince! a living prince,  l: First American edition: Oh! he was a prince—a prince,  l: a living prince, a real prince, without the shadow of a question, and the prayer of  l: a real prince—without the shadow of a question; and the prayer of  l: the pauper—boy’s heart was answered at last!  l: the pauper—boy’s heart was answered at last.    There is no profitable way to determine which of these alterations were Mark Twain’s. In this and numerous similar instances the editor runs the risk of seriously distorting or misrepresenting the author’s intentions, whether he adopts the whole set of variants or tries to extract Mark Twain’s revisions from the compositor’s. Thus in the nine chapters a conservative policy is followed, and the copy—text is the authority for emphasis.

(3) Mark Twain was not as careful about his spelling, capitalization, and hyphenation, as he was about his punctuation. His work contains outright errors (such as his habitual misspelling “sieze”) and lapses stemming from haste or carelessness (such as the omission of a letter in “straigtway” at 90.16–17). Moreover, he was often pointlessly inconsistent in such matters. He found the chore of hunting down and changing such inconsistent forms distasteful and expected it to be performed by the editors and compositors of his published works. In the manuscript of The Prince and the Pauper, he did make an effort to do some of this type of correcting; for instance, he went over his manuscript and numerous times added an apostrophe to the word “an” (meaning “if”). He nevertheless left many inconsistencies. Because he expected others to smooth the formal texture of his work, and because inconsistencies can be distracting to a reader, emendations for consistency have been adopted whenever retaining the inconsistency would serve no conceivable purpose and the author’s preference is discernible. As a rule, the resolution of inconsistencies is guided by his preponderant usage throughout the work. Out of well over a hundred references to the prince, for example, Mark Twain capitalized only seven times, all in the early pages of his manuscript. The frequency of occurrence within the book is sometimes inconclusive, and in these cases reference has been made to other writings of the same period. And in a few instances, as with the spellings “beggar—boy” and “beggar boy,” Mark Twain seems to have been utterly indifferent, and the editor’s choice is essentially arbitrary. In every case, however, the form chosen has the warrant of the author’s usage.

(4) Mark Twain’s manuscript contains numerous instances of a device characteristic of his manuscripts of the 1870s and 1880s: when the end of a sentence fell short of the right margin of the page, and there was not enough room on the same line for the following word, he often inscribed a dash to fill out the line. The device was probably a holdover from Clemens’ days as a printer—a translation into handwriting of a common newspaper technique for justifying a line following terminal punctuation (and for signaling that no paragraph break was intended). Newspaper compositors would often fill in such spaces with a dash rather than respace the line. The amanuensis who transcribed Mark Twain’s manuscript for the printer must have copied at least some of his end—line dashes after terminal punctuation, for a few are preserved in the first American edition. The compositors evidently interpreted such dashes as a justifying device, for almost none of them were typeset. In fact, in five of the six instances where the compositors typeset them in the main body of the text, they probably did so for their own convenience: these five dashes occur at the ends of lines in that edition as well (at 150.21, 164.16, 205.4, 320.30, and 328.32). The sixth instance, at 226.4, is discussed below.

It is not always possible, however, to interpret manuscript end—line dashes after terminal punctuation as a mere justifying device of no further significance. For example, Mark Twain used dashes following terminal punctuation to separate his historical notes from their source citations (pp. 337–342). In addition, he sometimes used them within a manuscript line to represent a pause or a continued thought, or to link a question and response (for instance, at 318.9–10 “Was it round? —and thick?—and had it letters and devices graved upon it?—Yes?” and at 263.8–9 “My father dead!—O, this is heavy news”). The decision about whether to retain Mark Twain’s end—line dashes must therefore take into account their literary significance.

Three categories of end—line dashes following terminal punctuation have been identified. The first and by far the largest category comprises all instances in which manuscript end—line dashes clearly have no rhetorical or stylistic function. In these instances, the dashes have been rejected in this edition as superfluous.

The second category comprises instances of dashes in Mark Twain’s historical notes. The dashes in this section, some of which occur at the ends of manuscript lines following terminal punctuation, are retained in this edition (as they were in the first American edition) because Mark Twain used them to separate the text of each note from its source citation.

The third category comprises sixteen doubtful cases of end—line dashes following terminal punctuation whose significance is ambiguous. In these cases, the dashes occur in passages of dialogue and internal monologue, where Mark Twain’s punctuation tends to be particularly idiosyncratic and rhetorical. The first American edition printed a dash in only one of these instances, at 226.4 (but changed the following word from the manuscript “Here” to “here”). The present edition retains the dashes in six cases in which they seem to serve an identifiable literary purpose, but rejects them in the remaining ten as superfluous.

(5) When Mark Twain interlined revisions in his manuscript, he sometimes inserted new punctuation without deleting the original punctuation. For instance, at 329.9 he wrote “for?”, inserted a caret between “for” and the question mark, and interlined “—who shall solve me this riddle?” above, inadvertently leaving two question marks. Similarly, he sometimes inserted a new word at the beginning of a sentence without changing the capital letter of the word that originally began the sentence to a lowercase letter. For instance, at 326.26 he wrote “He,” added “So” in front of it, and left standing the capital H. In order to avoid excessive listing of these mechanical emendations, such cases of double punctuation and capitalization are reported only in the list of alterations in the manuscript.

(6) In addition to the superfluous end—line dashes and instances of double punctuation and capitalization just discussed, a few mechanical changes are made without notation in the list of emendations. quote:
a. Mark Twain’s ampersands are expanded to “and.”

b. Superscript letters are lowered to the line.

c. Mark Twain’s chapter headings have been standardized to “CHAPTER” followed by an arabic numeral (in the manuscript Mark Twain designated chapter headings with a variety of abbreviations in upper or lower case); periods and flourishes following headings have been dropped.

d. The headings to Mark Twain’s notes (for instance, “Note 1.—Page”) which he varied in minor ways in the manuscript have been standardized to follow the first American edition, and the page numbers of the present edition are silently supplied.

e. The opening words of each chapter appear in small capitals with an ornamental initial letter as an editorial convention.

f. Punctuation following italic words is italicized according to the usual practice, whether or not Mark Twain underlined the mark of punctuation. </span>  Moreover, because it was Mark Twain’s intent that they be published as part of his book, the table of contents, chapter titles, list of illustrations, and illustrations and their captions are adopted from the first American edition, although they are styled to accord with this edition.



                    Guide to the Textual Apparatus