Little Lord Fauntleroy: The Book

Figure 1.--This is the cover of the first edition of Mrs. Burnett's "Little Lord Fauntleroy," the book that would influence boys' clothing and hair stles for a generation.

Little Lord Fauntleroy is Mrs. Burnett's best known book. The story was first published in serial form in the St. Nichols Magazine during 1885. It was an immediate success. It was first published during 1886 in book form. An English edition soon followed. Publication of the book led to stage and after the turn of the century movie productions. The book has since been translated into many languages. Editions have continued to appear into our modern day. Little Lord Fauntleroy has since 1886 been published in inumerable English as well as many foreign-language edditions. There is no difference in the English language text, except for some abridged editions for younger children. I am not sure if te foreign-language editions have changed over time. The only important difference in the various editions are the illustrations, although the jackets and book covers are different.

St. Nicholas Magazine

St. Nicolas Magazine was published from 1873 to 1939. During that long run, the magazine exerted an influence on young Americans rivaled only by that of The Youth's Companion. Editorial guidance was provided by Mary Mapes Dodge, who had earlier written the classic Hans Brinker: or, "The Silver Skates" in 1865). It was in St. Nichiolas that Frances Hogdsen Burnett's Little Lord Fauntleroy was published in 1885. St. Nicholas attracted some of the best known writers in America and England, including Mark Twain, Louisa May Alcott, Robert Louis Stevenson, Bret Harte, Rudyard Kipling, and the writer featured in this issue, L. Frank Baum, who had already achieved fame with his "modernized fairy tale", The Wonderful Wizard of Oz in 1900. Most important American illustrators had their work published in St. Nichiolas Magazine, including Maxfield Parrish and ???.

Little Lord Fauntleroy Editions

Litt;e Lord Fauntleroy is notable for the fact that it has never disappeared from book store shelves since it first appeared and new editions are constantly appearing. It is also notable for the many foreign language translations. Of course this is a very incomplete list of the many editions. Those editions of Little Lord Fauntleroy known to us include:

The 1880s

Little Lord Fauntleroy: First edition, 1886 (Birch illustrations)

Little Lord Fauntleroy: Second edition, 1888? (Birch illustrations) published in London

The 1890s

Little Lord Fauntleroy: ??? edition, 1898 (Birch illustations as far as we can tell the same ones as used in the first edition). It was published by Frederick Warne and Co, London. The opening titles also says the author, Mrs. F. H. Burnett also wrote 'That Lass o' Lowries' and 'Through One Administration'.

The 1900s

Der kleine Lord, Loewe, 1907. (Plonck illustrations)

The 1920s

Little Lord Fauntleroy Warne, 1925 (C.E. Brock illustrations)

The 1930s

Un Piccolo Lord, Florence, Salani, 1935. (Micheli illustrations)

Le Petit Lord Fountleroy, Nelson, 1938. (Bloch illustrations)

The 1940s

Il Piccolo Lord, Florence, Marzocco, 1940. (Fabbi illustrations). This edition is notable for the fact that Italy declared war on Britain in 1940 and Amerric in 1941. This seems a rather strange time to publish a book about a liitle American boy gone to England.

The 1950s

Little Lord Fauntleroy: The U.S. company Scribner publihed an edtion of Little Lord Fauntlroy with a charming cover in 1955. I'm not sure at this time what drawings they used in the edition.

The 1970s

Little Lord Fauntleroy, Glasgow, Collins-Lions, 1974. (No illustrations, the editor complaining that the original Birch illustrations were misleading.)

Figure 2.--Some editions of "Litt;e Lord Fauntleroy" have used photographs from movie and TB productions rather than drawings for illustrations. This 1980 paperback edition appeared with a U.S. TV production.The idea here was to capitalize on the TV production and the popularity of Richky Schroeder, the boy who played Ced=ric.

The 1980s

Little Lord Fauntleroy (1980). The paperback edition seen here was published to capitalize on interest created by the TV production. Ricjky Schroeder played Cedric.

The 1990s

Little Lord Fauntleroy (1993). (Illustrations by Graham Rust). The illustrator here seems particularly faithful to the story.

Mały lord Klasyka Dziecięca, 1998 (Pasierska illustrations)

Unknown publisjing date

Il piccolo Lord, Turin, Utet, no publication date. (Terzi illustrations)

Le Petit Lord Fauntleroy, Folio Junor. (I do not know the publishing date, but the cover illustratioins look modern. I do not know if this edition is illustrated other than the cover and if so who the illustrator was. This is a Belgian French language edition.)

Der kleine Lord. This is a German edition. I do not know the date of publication. Nor do we know the name of the llustrator who did the charming cover and several illustrations in the text. Note the white stockings. Cedric in the original American illustrayions was never pictured in white stockings. The German illustrator has also pictured him with much shorter hair than in the original American edition.


The only major differences in the various editions of Little Lord Fauntleroy has been the illustratiins. The first edition of Mrs. Burnett's book was illustrated by Reginald Birch and it is his drawings that are most associated with the book. A large number of illustrators from many different countries, however have also illustrated the various editions. The book appears to have been especially popular in Italy. Art work for the many editions has been executed by noted illustrators from every major European country, including: Birch (American, 1886), Block (English, 1925), Bloch (French, 1938), Fabbi (Italian, 1940), Micheli (Italian, 1935), Pasierska (Polish, 1998), Plonck (German, 1907), and Terzi (Italian, undated).


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Created: April 14, 2000
Last updated: 5:01 AM 2/26/2007