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Edward Lear

Author, Illustrator

(1812 - 1888)

Edward Lear

Edward Lear was an English artist, illustrator, author and poet. He is known mostly for his literary nonsense in poetry and prose, and especially his limericks, a form he popularised.

His principal areas of work as an artist were threefold:

  1. As a draughtsman employed to illustrate birds and animals;
  2. Making colored drawings during his journeys, which he reworked later, sometimes as plates for his travel books; and
  3. As a (minor) illustrator of Alfred Tennyson’s poems.

As an author, he is known principally for his popular nonsense works, which use real and invented English words.



Bibliography

ABC: Penned & Illustrated by Edward Lear, Himself (1965)

Another previously unpublished alphabet.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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Best in Children’s Books Volume 3 (1957)

A collection of stories, verses and articles, some of which have new illustrations.

Author(s): Hans Christian Andersen
Marguerite de Angeli
Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Barbara Cooney
Paul Galdone
Leonard Weisgard

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A Book of Bosh (1975)

An anthology of lyrics and prose.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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A Book of Nonsense (1846)

This first edition was published in two volumes. Each includes thirty-six limericks printed on the rectos only. Save for the volume indication, the covers are the same.

Author(s): Derry Down Derry
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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A Book of Nonsense (1855)

This second edition was published in one volume. The illustrations were redrawn on the lithographic stones, and the limericks are now lettered in the now-familiar five-line style.

Author(s): Derry Down Derry
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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A Book of Nonsense (1861)

Enlarged one-volume third edition contains forty-three new limericks, but three have been dropped from the earlier editions. The plates have been engraved on wood and the text is letterpress.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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A Book of Nonsense (1866)

This enlarged one-volume seventeenth edition contains forty-three new limericks, but three have been dropped from the earlier editions. The plates have been engraved on wood and the text is letterpress. This edition was hand colored.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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A Book of Nonsense (1870)

This is the first quarto edition, with colored illustrations printed by wood blocks. There is a typo on this cover as there are only 113 illustrations. Read for free online at Internet Archive.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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A Book of Nonsense (1980)

This is a facsimile of the first edition to be printed in color.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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A Book of Nonsense (1982)

A facsimile from the Osborne collection with colored plates.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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Bosh and Nonsense (1982)

Two hitherto unpublished notebooks of limericks drawn for eleven year old Ada Duncan in 1864-1865.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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The Complete Nonsense and Other Verse (2002)

This edition of the verse and nonsense drops the annotations, but was compiled by Lear’s biographer.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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The Complete Nonsense Book (1912)

A complete compilation of Lear’s nonsense up to the time of publication. Read for free online at Internet Archive.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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The Complete Nonsense of Edward Lear (1951)

An omnibus including five books: A Book of Nonsense, Nonsense Songs, Stories, Botany and Alphabets, More Nonsense, Pictures, Rhymes, Botany, &c., and Laughable Lyrics and Nonsense Songs and Stories.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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The Complete Verse and Other Nonsense (2001)

This is a scholarly edition of the verse and nonsense annotated by Lear’s biographer.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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A Drawing Book Alphabet (1954)

One of Lear’s previously unpublished comic alphabets.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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The Duck and the Kangaroo (1956)

This is a facsimile of an autograph in the Harvard Library Lear collection.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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Edward Lear 1812-1888 (1985)

This is the catalog to accompany an exhibition held at the Royal Academy of Arts. It includes an extensive bibliography. There is a generous selection of Lear’s drawings and paintings.

Author(s): Vivien Noakes
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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The Edward Lear Alphabet Book With Dash-Drawing for Little Children (1915)

The child artist completes the dashed outline of each letter, then colors in the original and his copy.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Frederick Richardson

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Edward Lear on My Shelves (1933)

A catalog of the extensive collection of Edward Lear which was later donated to the Harvard Houghton Library.

Author(s): William Bradhurst Osgood Field
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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Edward Lear’s A Nonsense Alphabet (1962)

An alphabet by the master of nonsense.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Richard Scarry

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Edward Lear’s Alphabet of Nonsense (2013)

This is a facsimile of the 1862 original.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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Facsimile of a Nonsense Alphabet (1926)

This is a facsimile of a nonsense alphabet originally written in 1849. Read for free online at Internet Archive.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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For Lovers of Birds (1978)

Drawings accompany selections from Edward Lear’s letters and diaries.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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For Lovers of Cats (1978)

Drawings accompany selections from Edward Lear’s letters and diaries.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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For Lovers of Flowers & Gardens (1978)

Drawings accompany selections from Edward Lear’s letters and diaries.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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For Lovers of Food & Drink (1978)

Drawings accompany selections from Edward Lear’s letters and diaries.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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Gleanings from the Menagerie and Aviary at Knowsley Hall (1846)

A collection of early illustrations of birds and animals by the master of nonsense. Read for free online at Internet Archive.

Author(s): John Edward Gray
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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Hilary Knight’s the Owl and the Pussy-Cat (1983)

The Owl and the Pussy-cat went to sea
In a beautiful pea-green boat.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Hilary Knight

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Hilary Knight’s the Owl and the Pussy-Cat (2001)

The Owl and the Pussy-cat went to sea
In a beautiful pea-green boat.

Author(s): Douglas Colby
Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Hilary Knight

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Illustrations of the Family Psittacidae, or Parrots (1832)

Forty-two colored plates in imperial folio published contemporaneously with Audubon’s Birds of America. The artist was largely self-taught and only twenty at the time of publication. Read for free online at the University of Wisconsin.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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The Jumblies and Other Nonsense Verses (1900)

A collection of nonsense verse. Read for free online at Internet Archive.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): L. Leslie Brooke

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Laughable Lyrics (1877)

This fourth and final collection includes The Dong with a Luminous Nose among other delights. Read for free online at Project Gutenberg and at DigiNole.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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Lear in the Original (1975)

A collection of original artwork for the Nonsense books, with a few miscellaneous sketches.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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More Nonsense Pictures, Rhymes, Botany, etc. (1872)

This is the author’s third collection of nonsense, which includes one hundred new limericks. Read for free online at Internet Archive.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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Mostly Magic (1958)

A collection of traditional fairy tales, fables and nursery rhymes for younger children.

Author(s): Brothers Grimm
Andrew Lang
Leonora Blanche Alleyne Lang
Edward Lear
Hugh Lofting
Beatrix Potter
Et al
Illustrator(s): Boris Artzybasheff
L. Leslie Brooke
Wanda Gág
Howard Pyle
Dr. Seuss
Et al

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Nonsense Botany and Nonsense Alphabets (2009)

Selections from Lear, mainly nonsense alphabets and botany.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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Nonsense Botany and Nonsense Alphabets, etc. (1927)

Selections from Lear, mainly nonsense alphabets and botany.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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The Nonsense Poems of Edward Lear (1991)

All the longer nonsense poems.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): L. Leslie Brooke

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Nonsense Songs & Laughable Lyrics (1935)

There were several versions of this collection which includes ‘The Scroobius Pip’ and ‘The Little Mouse.’

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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Nonsense Songs and Stories (1894)

This is a collection of longer poems and stories from the four nonsense books with a few additions. It does not include the limericks.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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Nonsense Songs and Stories (1984)

This is a facsimile of the 1895 edition. It is a collection of poems and stories from the four nonsense books with a few additions.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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Nonsense Songs, Stories, Botany and Alphabets (1871)

The author’s second book of nonsense includes The Owl and the Pussy-cat. Read for free online at Internet Archive.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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Nonsensus: Cross-Referencing Edward Lear’s Book of Nonsense (1988)

The first three editions of A Book of Nonsense are compared to the various original manuscripts. Includes a census of the then-known copies of the two-volume first edition.

Author(s): Justin G. Schiller
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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The Owl and the Pussy Cat (1961)

The Owl and the Pussy-Cat set out to sea with some honey and plenty of money, but where is the ring and the runcible spoon?

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): William Pène du Bois

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The Owl and the Pussy-Cat and Other Nonsense Poems (1995)

The Owl and the Pussy-Cat went to sea in a beautiful pea-green boat. Here they are accompanied by many of the delightful Lear Limericks and some of the longer nonsense poems.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Michael Hague

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The Owl and the Pussycat (1991)

The Owl and the Pussycat went to sea,
In a beautiful pea green boat.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Helen Cooper

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The Owl and the Pussycat (1991)

The Owl and the Pussycat put to sea again, with honey and money and a runcible spoon.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Jan Brett

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The Pelican Chorus and Other Verses (1899)

A collection of nonsense poems. Read for free online at Internet Archive.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): L. Leslie Brooke

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The Quangle Wangle’s Hat (1969)

The Quangle Wangle lives in the top of the Crumpetty tree.

1969

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Helen Oxenbury

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Queery Leary Nonsense: A Lear Nonsense Book (1911)

A new collection of Lear drawings and poems. Read for free online at DigiNole.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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Rhymes of Nonsense: An Alphabet (1968)

This alphabet was written around 1862 and is here first published in facsimile.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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The Scroobious Pip (1968)

The Scroobious Pip went out one day
When the grass was green and the sky was gray.
Then all the beasts in the world came round
When the Scroobious Pip sat down on the ground.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Ogden Nash
Illustrator(s): Nancy Ekholm Burkert

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Teapots and Quails, and Other New Nonsense (1953)

New nonsense from the master, taken from his unpublished works.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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Tortoises, Terrapins and Turtles Drawn from Life (1872)

While most of the drawings in this work were by James de Carle Sowerby, Edward Lear did the actual lithography. Read for free online at Internet Archive.

Author(s): John Edward Gray
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear
James de Carle Sowerby

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The Tragical Life and Death of Caius Marius, Esq., Late Her Majesty’s Consul-General in the Roman States (1983)

A series of comic sketches relating the life of a rags to riches Roman consul. This was issued in an edition of only one hundred copies. Read for free online at Nonsense Lit.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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Ye Long Nite in Ye Wonderfull Bedde (1972)

A series of captioned drawings from around 1853 from the Fitzwilliam.

Author(s): Edward Lear
Illustrator(s): Edward Lear

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