Author To Her Book

An Electronic Edition · Anne Bradstreet (1612-1672)

Original Source: The Works of Anne Bradstreet in Prose and Verse. Edited by John Harvard Ellis. (Charlestown: A. E. Cutter, 1867)

Copyright 2003. This text is freely available provided the text is distributed with the header information provided.

Full Colophon Information

The Author to her Book.

Thou ill-form’d offspring of my feeble brain, 
Who after birth did’st by my side remain, 
Till snatcht from thence by friends, less wise than true, 
Who thee abroad, expos’d to publick view, 
Made thee in raggs, halting to th’ press to trudg,5.
Where errors were not lessened (all may judg) 
At thy return my blushing was not small, 
My rambling brat (in print) should mother call, 
I cast thee by as one unfit for light, 
Thy Visage was so irksome in my sight;10.
Yet being mine own, at length affection would 
Thy blemishes amend, if so I could: 
I wash’d thy face, but more defects I saw, 
And rubbing off a spot, still made a flaw. 
I stretcht thy joynts to make thee even feet,15.
Yet still thou run’st more hobling then is meet; 
In better dress to trim thee was my mind, 
But nought save home-spun Cloth, i’ th’ house I find 
In this array, ‘mongst Vulgars mayst thou roam 
In Criticks hands, beware thou dost not come;20.
And take thy way where yet thou art not known, 
If for thy Father askt, say, thou hadst none: 
And for thy Mother, she alas is poor, 
Which caus’d her thus to send thee out of door. 

Full Colophon Information

Genre: Poetry
Subjects: Authorship
Period: 1650-1700
Location: New England
Format: verse

This text was first published in 1678 in Several Poems.

This electronic text was prepared from and proofed against The Works of Anne Bradstreet in Prose and Verse. Edited by John Harvard Ellis. (Charlestown: A. E. Cutter, 1867). All preliminaries and notes have been omitted except those for which the author is responsible and those in which editorial notes indicate significant textual variations. All editorial notes have been omitted except for those which indicate significant textual variations. Line and paragraph numbers contained in the source text have been retained. In cases where the source text displays no numbers, numbers are automatically generated. In the header, personal names have been regularized according to the Library of Congress authority files as "Last Name, First Name" for the REG attribute and "First Name Last Name" for the element value. Names have not been regularized in the body of the text.