The editor and publishers gratefully acknowledge the permission of Taylor & Francis Books to use the β text of Death’s Jest-Book from H.W. Donner’s The Works of Thomas Lovell Beddoes (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1935) as the copy text of this edition.
My thanks are due to Laura Ellis for her invaluable help with proof-reading. I am grateful for the support of colleagues at Carcanet and Manchester Metropolitan University – Michael Schmidt, Judith Willson, Jeffrey Wainwright, Barry Atkins and Simon Malpas; and also to colleagues in the Beddoes Society – Judith Higgens, Ute Berns and Shelley Rees. And special thanks as ever to my family: Desdemona, Jacob and Ruby.
This is the first complete edition of Death’s Jest-Book to be published for twenty-five years, and the first ever book to make this extraordinary text available to a wider range of readers, scholars and students as an affordable paperback. We are indebted to the Thomas Lovell Beddoes Society, and especially to its dedicated chairman, John Lovell Beddoes, not only for assistance with the publication of this edition, but more generally for raising the profile of the poet over the past decade. Contact details for the Society can be found at the end of this book.