THE RARE FINAL EDITION. Alexander Hogg (fl.1778-1809) began working for John Cooke who was a major publisher of serialised part works. In 1778, he started out on his own in competition. Adams stated, ‘a favourite pastime of both Cooke and Hogg was the invention of elegant aliases for the authorship of their topographical “sixpenny numbers” which must in fact have owed their existence to the attic labours of a consortium of sweated Grub Street hacks’. These writers compiled these works by plagiarising existing publications and offering them as weekly parts of 6d. The original title page stated that this work was ‘published under the inspection of Henry Boswell, Esq. F.A.R.S. Assisted by Robert Hamilton, L.L.D.’ Cooke publicly accused Hogg of fabrication when he announced in ‘The World’ 1-2 October 1788 that there was no Henry Boswell at the F.R.A.S. (Fellows of the Royal and Antiquarian Societies). Although Hogg defended other charges, he never denied this one.
‘The Antiquities of England and Wales’ is effectively an abridgement of the six volumes published by Francis Grose. Hodson writes that Hogg had taken over the ‘London Magazine’ after the publication of the volume for January to June 1785. It was at this point that no doubt he also became the owner of the copper plates by Kitchen used in 1747-63 to illustrate a set of English and Welsh counties. The parts for Hogg’s work were first advertised on the verso of the title to the third volume of the ‘New London Magazine’ for 1787 and published in January 1788. Ten numbers were available at the price of 6d. each. This would indicate initial publication of the weekly sometime in October 1787. The one hundred parts were completed early as the ‘Glocester Journal’ of 16 February 1789 announced that the completed work was available ‘elegantly bound in calf and lettered, price 3l.’ All but one of the county maps were originally published in the ‘London Magazine’. All references to the work are removed. That was previously published in Hogg’s ‘New British Traveller’ in 1784. Each map is accompanied by a single leaf of descriptive text.
For this final revised edition, the pseudonym of Henry Boswell is dropped altogether, no further pretence of his existence is given. Indeed, the reworded title places Francis Grose in the most prominent position. Hodson records only four known examples, two in the Burden collection, one in the Whitaker Collection, Leeds, and another in a private collection. To this the ESTC records the John Rylands Library, Manchester, and Worcester College, Oxford. There is a newly engraved frontispiece also after Ryley by Scott. In this edition only the forty maps of the English counties are included, those of Wales, Scotland and Ireland are omitted. For this work Alexander Hogg was joined by Henry Delahoy Symonds as publisher. Hodson noted that Carroll had located an advert in the ‘Lincoln, Rutland and Stamford Mercury’ for 3 August 1798 in which the work was offered either bound for £2. 10s. 0d., or in forty numbers for 1s. each. Adams (1983) p. xv; Chubb (1927) 257; ESTC T122443; Hodson (1984-97) 281; Shirley (2004) G.Hogg 2a; Worms & Baynton-Williams (2011).