On the inside of the cover of a typical book you'll find the small print about the book. Stuff like copyright notices, place of print, authors, editors and alike.

Also, you'll find information about the edition and version or printing for this particular publication. I am looking for the proper phrasing of that, along the lines of:

3rd version/printing, 1st edition

This above example looks like what I would see in a book of my native (Danish) language, which would be something like:

  1. udgave, 1. oplag

The translations of

  • udgave into version or printing and of
  • oplag into edition

are the best suggestions I could find from looking through the dictionary. I'd appreciate some final guidance for the proper terms and proper phrasing and structure of this inside-cover line.

  • Might include "Published by XXX" and "Reprinted 2012, 2013". Feb 6, 2019 at 12:36

1 Answer 1


Yes, first edition (or second edition, etc.) is the correct, natural term. For the other, you don't see it that often, but 'printing' is correct.

It usually gets formatted more like "first published XXXX" to indicate the date of the first edition, and "4th edition published XXXX" for the number and year of current edition. If the different editions have different publishers, who they were published by would be included. After the details of the current edition, you might get "reprinted XXXX, XXXX" etc. That tells you how many extra printing there have been, the last year being the current one. So:

"First published 1997. 4th edition published 2005, reprinted 2006, 2007 (twice), 2008"

would mean this is the fourth edition, and the fifth printing of that edition. That particular copy would have been printed in 2008.

It is occasionally done tersely, in the way you give as an example.

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