Title: Bilioustine

Category: Satire

Value:  $200

Volume:  1

Issue:  1

Local ID:  10011

Date:  1904

Publisher:  Chicago, IL

From the catalog of Periodyssey.
The Bilioustine (Chicago)
By 1901, Bert Leston Taylor, a columnist for The Chicago Tribune, had had his fill of Elbert Hubbard, the Roycrofters, their Philistine, and the cult-like movement that had grown up around it all. He set out to level the playing field a bit by creating The Bilioustine, a clever parody of Hubbard’s epigrammatic and egoistical style in the guise of a competing magazine. It first appeared in serial fashion in the pages of the Trib. Then, it was gathered together in a brown rough-paper wrapper that looked just like its more serious progenitor. It bore the issue date of “1901: Printed whenever we need the money by the Boy Grafters at East Aurora, Illinois.” It was, of course, full of epigrams, such as this one: “Next to boiling an egg there is nothing easier to do than an epigram. Just take a pertinent saying by some dead genius and turn it inside out.” And there was a Little Journey, a short story, and parodies of parodies, such as this one: “The Pale-Blue Ass/I never saw a pale-blue ass – /I’ve always wished to see one./Meanwhile I do my level best/Endeavoring to be one.” The first issue was successful enough to spawn a second. Aping the methods of the Roycrofters, the publisher William S. Lord, also produced a “deluxe edition”, limited to 250 copies and bound in rough burlap. The binding is inferior and has not aged well, but that was part of the joke. He did not repeat the “deluxe edition” conceit with the second issue. To no one’s surprise, The Bilioustine did not fail to slow the march of the Roycrofters. As Hubbard himself was fond of saying, “Every knock is a boost!” Scarce. Hysterical. This is the unlimited edition.