Scouting for Boys: A Handbook for Instruction in Good Citizenship


Scouting for Boys: A Handbook for Instruction in Good Citizenship is the first book on the Scout Movement, published in 1908. It was written and illustrated by Robert Baden-Powell, its founder. It is based on his boyhood experiences, his experience with theMafeking Cadet Corps during the Second Boer War at the Siege of Mafeking, and on his experimental camp on Brownsea Island, England.

History[edit]

Scouting for Boys (1908) is Baden-Powell’s rewrite of his earlier military books Reconnaissance and Scouting (1884) and Aids to Scouting for NCOs and Men (1899). These books were military manuals used by the British Army to train scouts. At Mafeking, Baden-Powell recruited and trained boys aged 12–15 as postmen, messengers, and later to carry the wounded, to free men for fighting. Upon return to England, following the Boer War, Baden-Powell learned some British schools had been using his books to teachobservation and deduction. He decided to revise his military publications into a book for boys. Several friends supported Baden-Powell, including Sir William Alexander Smith, founder of the Boys’ Brigade, and Cyril Arthur Pearson, who owned newspapers and printing presses.[2] In 1906 and 1907 Baden-Powell spent a lot of time writing Scouting for Boys and advancing his ideas about the Boy Scouts Scheme. These were tested in a camp on Brownsea Island in the summer of 1907, where Pearson’s literary editor Percy Everett assisted.

Scouting for Boys was published in six fortnightly instalments of approximately 70 pages each, from January to March 1908. They were produced by Pearson’s printer, Horace Cox. These six publications were a success, and as planned were issued in book form on 1 May 1908. Scouting for Boys has been translated into many languages. In 1948, the book was still selling 50,000 copies annually. Only in 1967 was a decline noted by the publisher, and in the last decades of the 20th century, even by the Scout movement, the book came to be seen as a period curiosity.[2] It is claimed to be the fourth bestselling book of the 20th century.[3][4] A realistic estimate is that approximately 4 million copies of the UK edition have been sold. Extrapolating this to 87 different language editions worldwide, historic world sales of Scouting for Boys can be estimated at 100 to 150 million copies since 1908.[5][6]

Editions[edit]

Scouting for Boys has been published in over thirty consecutive editions by London based C. Arthur Pearson Ltd., and it is translated to all the major languages of the world. Estimatedly, over 100 million books have been printed, making it rank high in the list of best-selling books.[7]

British editions[edit]

  • Scouting for Boys (First published ed.). London, Windsor House, Bream’s Buildings, E.C.: Horace Cox (printer for C.A. Pearson). January–March 1908. pp. six instalments of approx 70 pages each.
  • Scouting for Boys (1st bookform, cloth-bound ed.). London, Henrietta Street: C. Arthur Pearson Ltd. 1 May 1908. pp. 288 pages.
  • Scouting for Boys (2nd revised ed.). London: C. Arthur Pearson Ltd. June 1909.
  • Scouting for Boys (3rd enlarged ed.). London: C. Arthur Pearson Ltd. July 1910.
  • Scouting for Boys (4th enlarged and revised ed.). London: C. Arthur Pearson Ltd. October 1911.
  • Scouting for Boys (5th ed.). London: C. Arthur Pearson Ltd. November 1912.
  • Scouting for Boys (6th ed.). London: C. Arthur Pearson Ltd. April 1913.
  • Scouting for Boys (7th ed.). London: C. Arthur Pearson Ltd. December 1913.
  • Scouting for Boys (8th ed.). London: C. Arthur Pearson Ltd. January 1916. pp. 352 pages.
  • Scouting for Boys (9th ed.). London: C. Arthur Pearson Ltd. May 1918. pp. 334 pages.[8]
  • Scouting for Boys (11th ed.). London, Tower House: C. Arthur Pearson Ltd. 1924. pp. 338 pages.
  • Scouting for Boys (12th ed.). London: C. Arthur Pearson Ltd. 1926. pp. 338 pages.
  • Baden-Powell’s Scouting for Boys (Boy’s edition ed.). London: C. Arthur Pearson Ltd. 1932. pp. 226 pages.
  • Sgowtio i Fechgyn gan Arglwydd Baden-Powell o Gilwel. (Argraffiad y Bechgyn ed.). Caerfyrddin: W. Spurrell a’i Fab. 1932. pp. 232 pages.
  • Baden-Powell’s Scouting for Boys (Memorial 22nd ed.). London: C. Arthur Pearson Ltd. 1944. pp. 328 pages.
  • Baden-Powell’s Scouting for Boys (30th ed.). London: C. Arthur Pearson Ltd. 1957. pp. 328 pages.
  • Scouting for Boys (33rd ed.). London: C. Arthur Pearson Ltd. 1961. pp. 330 pages.
  • Scouting for Boys (abridged ed.). London: The Boy Scouts Association. 1963. pp. 182 pages.
  • Scouting for Boys (paperback ed.). The Scout Association. 1998. ISBN 0-85165-247-6.
  • Elleke Boehmer, ed. (2004). Scouting for Boys (hard cover ed.). Oxford: Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-280547-9.
  • Elleke Boehmer, ed. (June 2005). Scouting for Boys (paperback ed.). Oxford/New York: Oxford University Press. pp. 448 pages. ISBN 0-19-280246-1.

Other editions[edit]

  • Scouting for Boys (Special Canadian Edition ed.). Ottawa: The Boy Scouts Association. 1939. pp. 334 pages.
  • Jan Schaap, ed. (1944). Het verkennen voor jongens (in Dutch) (5th, cloth bound ed.). ‘s-Gravenhage: De Nederlandsche Padvinders. pp. 269 pages.
  • Scouting for Boys in India (1st Indian ed.). General Headquarters of the Boy Scout Association in India. 1946. pp. 316 pages.
  • Scouting for Boys (World Brotherhood ed.). Boy Scouts of America for and on behalf of the Boy Scouts International Bureau. 1946. pp. 328 pages.
  • Het verkennen voor jongens (in Dutch) (6th, hard cover ed.). ‘s-Gravenhage: Nationale Padvindersraad. c. 1950. pp. 395 pages.
  • Scouting for Boys. Boy Scouts of Canada. 1973. pp. 331 pages.
  • Mir Mohammad Mohsin, ed. (1973). Scouting brā’ē tiflān (in Urdu). Islamabad: National Book Foundation.
  • Theo P.M. Palstra, ed. (1977). Verkennen voor jeugd (in Dutch) (10th, paperback ed.). Amersfoort: Scouting Nederland. pp. 301 pages.
  • Fausto Catani, ed. (1978). Scautismo per ragazzi (in Italian). Milan: Ancora. pp. 438 pages.
  • Baden-Powell’s Scouting for Boys (Brownsea jubilee ed.). Boy Scouts of America. 1982. ISBN 0-8395-3591-0.
  • P.V. Paulose, ed. (1982). Skauttingu-kuttikalkku (in Malayalam). Trivandrum: Bharat scouts and guides. pp. 456 pages.
  • Pfadfinder: ein Handbuch der Erziehung (in German) (13th ed.). Bern: Pfadfinder-Materialbüro. 1983. pp. 315 pages.
  • Frithiof Dahlby, ed. (1983). Scouting for boys (in Swedish). Stockholm: Scoutförl. pp. 192 pages.
  • Paula Koho, ed. (1986). Partiopojan kirja (in Finnish) (3rd ed.). Helsinki: Partiokirja. pp. 350 pages.
  • Stanisław Kapiszewski, ed. (1990). Skauting dla chłopców : wychowanie dobrego obywatela metodą puszczańską (in Polish). Warsaw: Oficyna Przeglądu Powszechnego. pp. 375 pages.
  • József Illy, ed. (1994). Cserkészet fiúknak: kézikönyv a jó állampolgár neveléséhez az erdőjárás révén (in Hungarian). Budapest: M. Cserkészcsapatok Szövets. pp. 277 pages.
  • José Francisco dos Santos, ed. (May 1993). Escutismo para rapazes (in Portuguese). Lisbon: Corpo Nacional de Escutas. pp. 310 pages.
  • Peter Bleeser, ed. (1996). Pfadfinder (in German) (3rd ed.). Neuss: Georgs-Verlag. pp. 309 pages.
  • R. Chandrasekharan, ed. (2000). Bālakarigāgi skauting (in Kannada). Bangalore: Navakarnataka. pp. 321 pages.
  • Kevin Y.L. Tan, ed. (2004). Scouting for Boys (in Malaysian) (hard cover ed.). Singapore: Brownsea Singapore. ISBN 981-05-1830-7.
  • B. Ramachandran, LT(S), ed. (Dec 2008). Siruvar Saaraniyam (Tamil) (in Tamil). Chennai: BRJB Publishers. pp. 335 pages.

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