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Charles   Johnson
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message 1: by Zadignose (last edited Feb 04, 2014 02:02AM) (new)

Zadignose | 43 comments I discovered that the book A General History of the Pyrates has been published under a variety of titles, and that it had been attributed not only to Captain Charles Johnson, but also Daniel Defoe.

Although some of the published editions include Daniel Defoe as the author's name on the cover, in fact the author has never been definitively identified as Daniel Defoe. The book was published under the name "Captain Charles Johnson," which has at times been assumed to be a pseudonym... for whom, we don't know.

Now, the librarian's manual suggests all editions of this same book should have the same primary author, and it seems it should either be "Captain Charles Johnson," or "Charles Johnson." The author needs to be distinguished from other authors named Charles Johnson, and the Librarian Manual states:

"Authors with titles or degrees (such as Dr., Sir, Ph.D., Captain, Reverend, etc) should NOT be included in the author name (unless necessary to avoid confusion)"

So the basic question is, does this qualify as a case where it is "necessary to avoid confusion"? Is "Captain" an essential part of the name, as it was used in the original publication and is part of the presumed pseudonym (i.e. it's not necessarily even a "title" proper, but arguably a part of the author's pen name)?

message 2: by Ine (new)

Ine | 263 comments I'd say Charles Johnson, and make sure to put the information you've got here in the bio. A similar case is Lord George Herbert,, who's only listed as George Herbert even though again it is probably a pseudonym because of the smuttiness.

message 3: by rivka, Librarian Moderator (new)

rivka | 42062 comments Mod
I agree that they should all have Charles Johnson (with as many spaces as are necessary for disambiguation) as the primary author.

Any editions with Defoe on the cover should have that as a secondary author.

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