National Velvet

National Velvet was one of the earliest pony stories, and a powerful example of wish fulfillment. Velvet Brown wins the Grand National, still something no real-life female has managed to do, on her raffle prize piebald horse, The Pie, trained by butcher’s assistant Mi.

Printing history
Heinemann, London, 1935, illus Laurian Jones.  268pp + vII
As a play, 1946
1954 reprint, illustrated by Laurian Jones
1954 New Windmill
Large print, Lythway 1978
Paperbacks
Penguin 1939 (Penguin Book no 232)
Penguin 1962
Pan, 1978
Piccolo, 1984
Mammoth, 1992

National Velvet was one of the earliest pony stories, and a powerful example of wish fulfillment.  Velvet Brown wins the Grand National, still something no real-life female has managed to do, on her raffle prize piebald horse, The Pie, trained by butcher’s assistant Mi. The brilliance of Enid Bagnold lay in her convincing the reader that everything that happened in the story was entirely possible. She was not seduced so far by the starriness of her tale to make Velvet win and keep the National: Velvet is disqualified, but we know that she was the real winner.

The book was illustrated by Enid Bagnold’s daughter, Laurian Jones

Other editions

 

American editions
(Thank you to Susan Bourgeau for supplying this wonderful set of pictures)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Enid Bagnold