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FOREWORD TO VOLUME ONE
Most of the material in the present Volume appeared in print in collected form for the first time in 1933, when it was published by Rider & Co. in London, under the title of the The Complete Works of H. P. Blavatsky. A considerable portion of the stock of that Volume perished in the London "blitz" during the second World War. As a result of this, these earlier Volumes have been unobtainable for many years.
The material originally published in Volume I has been thoroughly revised; the text has been checked in almost every instance wit the original sources of publication, and most of the quoted matter compared with the originals and corrected whenever necessary. Substantial additions have been incorporated in the present Volume, such as H.P.B.'s characteristic marginal pen-and-ink Notes and Comments in her Scrapbooks now in the Archives at Adyar, her Travel-Impressions of 1867 jotted down in one of her Notebooks, her revealing entries in Col. Olcott's Diaries of 1878, and a few articles and brief items from her pen discovered during the last few years. Many explanatory notes and comments have been added by the Compiler to clarify points of Theosophical history. A comprehensive yet succinct outline of H.P.B.'s family background and early life and travels has been prepared especially for this Volume. Biographical and Bibliographical information has been collected in the Appendix with regard to a number of individuals associated with H.P.B. in the formative years of the Theosophical Movement, especially the Co-founders of the Society, and other personalities she refers to or quotes from.
All in all, the present Volume, far from being merely a second edition of the earlier one, is de facto an entirely new Volume, and is intended to set the stage and sound the key-note for the entire Series of the Collected Writings.
The Compiler wishes to express his gratitude to all those who have helped in the preparation of this Volume, especially the following friends and associates:
Irene R. Ponsonby who checked all the editorial material and read the page proofs, and whose thorough knowledge of literary style and
methods was of inestimable help; Zoltán de álgya-Pap, of the Adyar Archives, whose willing assitance and painstaking checking of original sources provided a major contribution to the completeness of this Volume; Dara R. Eklund who was responsible for the checking of innumerable quotations in various out of the way publications; Frances Ziegenmeyer who helped with the transcription of microfilm; and Margaret Chamberlain Rathbun who proofread the text of the entire Volume in manuscript.
BORIS DE ZIRKOFF,
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA, U.S.A.
JANUARY 4TH, 1966.