The Compleat Angler is 350 years old!!! [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: The Compleat Angler is 350 years old!!!

04-24-2003, 08:21 AM
May 1653 marks the first publication of Izaak Waltons timeless classic. For those in the NYC area, there is a small exhibition of early editions in the NY Public Library which runs until June 14th. I took a walk over there recently and whilst small as exhibitions go, its pretty cool to be able to look at and read an actual first edition. Later editions include the first collaboration with Charles Cotton who apparently introduced Walton to fishing with artificial flies - Walton was a bait man up until that point :devil:

One interesting observation was how the book seems to grow in size as each successive edition appears. The first edition would fit in your shirt pocket. The leather bound editions published in the late 19th century - leather bound and embossed in gold leaf with full color Audubon style engravings are incredibly ornate and definitely not designed to be carried around.

Walton actualy lived into his 90s which is not bad for 17th century England which saw a large chunk of the population wiped out by the plague in 1665.

Well worth a visit if you find yourself in New York with an hour to kill.:smokin:

04-24-2003, 01:49 PM
Isn't it wild that a book that old has endured this long. It has always been a very strong seller on our site and I am always amazed to see an order come through for it. Haven't read it personally guess I need to sit down and read it.

04-24-2003, 02:03 PM
Check out the Issac Walton Compleat Angler special on Espn which was ran a couple of months ago if you can. Great piece of work on fly fishing the streams Walton did in England. Have to see if I can get a tape of it to add to my library with A River Runs Through It.

PM Out

04-24-2003, 03:18 PM
Adrian... if you get there please pick me up a brochure or a book ..I will pay you for any book they are selling to commemorate the exhibit.. I just sent in $23.00 to an e-bay seller for my 5th copy of the book.. this one I bought is only 1910... the other 4 are in the 1800 with one in the early 1800.. Also picked up Bates first edition book on Streamer tying,, for $16.00. By the way.. for those looking for a first edition Joe Brooks.. "Flyfishing"... they have several for sale.. Waltons book is the second most published book in history ,except for the Bible.

04-24-2003, 04:25 PM
John, they didn't have any actual copies for sale but I did pick up an exhibit brochure which I will bring up to the Cape. It has some interesting stuff on the various editions.

04-24-2003, 11:31 PM
Adrian and all,
Project Canterbury has T.C.A. online, anyone wishing the address can PM me. I have found it a very good read, easy to tackle, and use it as reference often!