|Parent company||Penguin Random House|
|Founder||Leonard Woolf and Virginia Woolf|
|Successor||Chatto & Windus and Crown Publishing Group|
|Country of origin||United Kingdom|
The Hogarth Press is a book publishing imprint of Penguin Random House that was founded as an independent company in 1917 by British authors Leonard Woolf and Virginia Woolf. It was named after their house in Richmond (then in Surrey and now in London), in which they began hand-printing books as a hobby during the interwar period.
Hogarth originally published the works of many members of the Bloomsbury group, and was at the forefront of publishing works on psychoanalysis and translations of foreign, especially Russian, works.
In 1938, Virginia Woolf relinquished her interest in the business and it was then run as a partnership by Leonard Woolf and John Lehmann until 1946, when it became an associate company of Chatto & Windus. In 2011, Hogarth Press was relaunched as an imprint for contemporary fiction in a partnership between Chatto & Windus in the United Kingdom and Crown Publishing Group in the United States, which had both been acquired by Random House.
Printing was a hobby for the Woolfs, and it provided a diversion for Virginia when writing became too stressful. The couple bought a handpress in 1917 for £19 (equivalent to about £1295 in 2018) and taught themselves how to use it. The press was set up in the dining room of Hogarth House, where the Woolfs lived, lending its name to the publishing company they founded. In July they published their first text, a book with one story written by Leonard and the other written by Virginia.
Between 1917 and 1946 the Press published 527 titles. It moved to Tavistock Square in 1924.
|Number of publications by year from 1917 to 1946|
|Profit generated by the Hogarth Press publication (without bonuses and salaries)|
|Profit||£13 8s 8d||£13 14s 2d||£68 19s 4d||£25 5s 6d||£10 6s 4d||£5 7s 8d||£3 17s 0d||£73 1s 1.5d||£26 19s 1d||£64 2s 0d||£380 16s 0d||£580 14s 8d||£2,373 4s 2.5d||£2,209 0s 1.5d||£1,693 4s 1d||£929 15s 2.5d||£516 13s 0d||£598 7s 2d||£84 5s 0d||£2,422 18s 5d||£35 7s 7d|
The Hogarth Press produced a number of publication series that were affordable as well as being attractively bound and printed, and usually commissioned from well known authors. These include the initial Hogarth Essays in three series 1924–1947 (36 titles), Hogarth Lectures on Literature (2 series 1927–1951), Merttens Lectures on War and Peace (8 titles 1927–1936), Hogarth Living Poets (29 titles 1928–1937), Day to Day Pamphlets (1930–1939), Hogarth Letters (12 titles 1931–1933) and World-Makers and World-Shakers (4 titles 1937).
The Essays were the first series produced by the press and include works by Virginia Woolf, Leonard Woolf and Gertrude Stein. Virginia Woolf's defence of modernism, Mr. Bennett and Mrs. Brown (1924) was the initial publication in the series. Cover illustrations were by Vanessa Bell.
The Letters are less well known, and are epistolary in form. Authors include E.M. Forster and Virginia Woolf. Woolf's A Letter to a Young Poet (1932), was number 8, and addressed to John Lehmann as an exposition on modern poetry. Cover illustrations were by John Banting. In 1933, the entire series was reissued as a single volume, and are available on the Internet Archive in a 1986 edition.
See also: Category:Hogarth Press books
In 2015 Hogarth Press began producing a series of modern retellings of William Shakespeare plays, known as the Hogarth Shakespeare Project, for which it hired a variety of authors: