As all collectors know, Ladybird Books can be harder than most to accurately date. For the most part, the only date in a vintage Ladybird Book is on the title page – and that date is the date of the publication of the first edition, not the actual edition you have in your hand. This is one of the reasons why so many Ladybird Books are falsely described as ‘First Editions’ on the internet and even in specialist bookshops.
On the other hand, once you have got your head around the basics, doing a bit of detective work can be part of the fun of collecting. A collecting pal of mine, Andrew Brade, sent me a table that he uses to help date his books. It uses guidelines you can find elsewhere (including in the ‘How Old is my Book’ section of my website) – original price, tally numbers etc. But it has been very neatly put together and might be useful to other people out there. He tells me he is happy for me to share it so here it is:
Click on it to enlarge!