Editorial Note

Lyndon W. Cook and Andrew F. Ehat, comps. and eds., editorial note to The Words of Joseph Smith: The Contemporary Accounts of the Nauvoo Discourses of the Prophet Joseph (Provo, UT: Religious Studies Center, 1980), xxi–xxii.

Every effort has been made to present a faithful copy of the original reports of Joseph Smith's discourses. By retaining original spelling, punctuation, and paragraphing we hoped to preserve the integrity of the documents. The footnotes provide biographical data on each individual mentioned in the text, doctrinal insights into many of the Prophet's teachings, historical background to each sermon, bibliographic information on each report, and references to scriptures the Prophet quoted but were not identified. Unless otherwise indicated, all discourses were delivered at Commerce, later, Nauvoo, lllinois.

* A scripture listed in a footnote and marked with an asterisk means that in the text Joseph Smith makes a revision to the Bible and that the manuscripts of the inspired Translation of the Bible do not reflect this change. Follow the link at the end of this sentence to see the footnotes referring to these changes.

{ } Braces are used for three purposes: (1) to enclose in the original report words that are not the Prophet's but that give contextual background to his remarks; (2) to enclose words that come from the "Book of the Law of the Lord;" and, (3) to enclose words of the original record of a discourse used in the published version, when, generally speaking, the rest of the report is not used in the official account.

. . . Ellipses are used to delete from the text remarks made by individuals other than the Prophet. In no case are ellipses used to delete portions of Joseph Smith's discourses.

And Words struck out (cancelled) in the originals have been retained.

(1) In footnotes the use of parentheses after the date of a discourse suggests that there is more than one discourse for that date. "(1)" denotes the first discourse, and "(2)" denotes the second discourse.

17n 2 In the index [of the book form of this infobase] a boldface page number following a name indicates the page on which is found a biographical note for that individual. Follow the link token at the end of this sentence to see the entire biographical register for this book (biographical entries are in the order of the individual's appearance in the book).

When you print with the Hidden Text page setup option enabled, the source (including date for the sermon) is provided in the print out. Each paragraph of the extract includes a heading that identifies the source from which the extract comes.

For this computer edition, a number of changes and corrections were made. One particular revision is the elimination of the two appendixes that appeared in the first edition of Words and their relocation into the main body of the text (Appendix A and Appendix B). This first computer edition of The Words of Joseph Smith corresponds to the text of the 1980 edition, except, of course, for the addition of new texts as well as revisions to the footnotes and minor changes to the introductory matter that correspond to these changes. The next computer edition not only will include a thorough rediting of the text against the originals, but it will also fulfill Dean C. Jessee's challenge to provide the texts of the pre-Nauvoo discourses of the Prophet Joseph Smith. If you have comments or suggestions regarding this computer edition, please contact Andrew F. Ehat via e-mail (Andrew@WesternStandard.com).

Andrew F. Ehat
October 10, 1996