This essay analyses a recently discovered copy of the first edition of Lady Caroline
Lamb's Glenarvon in the Koninklijke Bibliotheek at The Hague filled with annotations
and corrections apparently in the hand of its author. This copy shows many of the extensive
revisions eventually implemented in the second edition of the novel. Some changes
indicated in this special copy were not adopted, however, and a note on the punctuation
in a hand not the author's raises the question of whether others edited the work, especially
the punctuation. The essay shows how, working with great skill to minimise the labour
of resetting type, Lamb appears to have made her text less vulnerable to charges of indecency,
blasphemy, and animus towards friends and relations. However, it also shows
that the novel's major themes remain substantially unaltered, while the transgressions
of Lamb's protagonist, Lady Calantha, are excused as the result of ineluctable passions.
The consistency of the substantive alterations and the inconsistency of the punctuational
changes suggest that Lamb probably had the final word on revisions.