HOW TO USE | The Disordered Image

How to Use This Collection

The Primary Goal of this Work

This collection is intended to help researchers and collectors identify which volumes of Lewis’ works are really the same between the covers. Over the years, hundreds of editions of his works have been produced, sometimes the same volume only with a new cover, sometimes an entirely new setting with new cover, and not infrequently (and most confusingly) an entirely new setting but with a recycled cover from a previous setting. Since no “authorized editions” of Lewis’s works exist, researchers are continually fuddled to discover what edition another scholar is citing. This collection begins to sort that out.


What’s Included and Not

This work catalogs editions of all primary works by C. S. Lewis and editions of his works edited by others.

Because it is intended for researchers and collectors, it does not catalog…

  • Anthologies (except where whole works are found)
  • Books of quotations, reflections, or devotions extracted from Lewis’s writings
  • Non-English language translations (except for GoodKnight’s Narniad translations, which are included)
  • Audio, Stage, and other adaptations (Although appendices may list such sources so that the viewer knows what they are. )
  • Secondary sources (Books about Lewis by others)

The Collection’s Organization

The collection is organized according to “setting,” that is, a particular typeset featuring unique pagination. All identical volumes of a setting are grouped together roughly in chronological order of the first appearance of a setting. For example, The Screwtape Letters has twelve different volumes that are all identical to the first Bles edition between the covers (one as recent as 1992). All of these volumes are grouped under label “SL1.” This means that while the setting numbers are roughly chronological with the date of appearance of the first example, some SL2 edition may be (and indeed were) produced many years before some of the SL1 editions. Thus this collection is not strictly chronological, but functionally so according to the pagination/typeset of the edition.

While this may not be the most intuitive organization to a person wanting to know the strict order of production, it is more useful to researchers attempting to identify if the copy of SL on their shelves is functionally the same as the one being cited. Additionally collectors will find it useful to know which volumes are actually identical sans the covers.


Understanding Edition Codes

Every edition has been assigned a code which is used consistently throughout the collection, and with the hopes that it may facilitate shorthand when communicating.

Example: AM4-M2a-3-67

AM – The Title (See Volume Abbreviations Page) [The Abolition of Man]
4 – The Setting Number [All editions in the 4th setting are identical between the covers]
M – The Publisher of this volume (See Publisher Abbreviations Page) [Macmillan]
2 –  Indicates Number of times this Publisher has released a volume in a unique setting (The second time Macmillan has published the title using a new setting, meaning M1 was published using an earlier setting)
a – The Cover (advances when Publisher recovers the book within the same setting) [The first cover of AM4-M2]
3 – The Printing number [The third printing of AM4-M2a]
67 – The Year of the printing [The third printing came out in 1967]
Note: when printing number or year of printing is not known from edition, the unknown value will be replaced with “x.”
For Example: SL3-M2b-1-x

Now Seeking Crowd-Sourced Data

This Collection has to date been a one-man project. With the gradual publication of this material, Dr. Greenhill hopes to solicit the assistance of other Lewis readers, scholars, and collectors. Because publication information must be reconstructed from the data page, many volumes must be looked over to collect the printing history.

Dr. Greenhill has scanned hundreds of editions over the last decade, and now requests you go over your shelves and send him images and publication information from your editions. Please visit the contact page for instructions on submitting data. Thank you.