Day-by-day means dia a dia (or a reading for every day of the year and for everyday as well), in the context of 1827; the year that William Hone issued his "The Every Day Book".
I would dare to say, a day-by-day book and a book for everyday.
It is similar to the Chatolic calendar books we found in Brazil some time ago, except that ours had the Saint´s day (day by day), and domestic pieces of advice, if memory serves me well, and other domestic miscelaneous.
But never had anything about heathen parties or mores, whereas the Hone´s book had pretty much everything he pleased to insert in it, it seems.
His "The Every Day book" resembles the Almanacs of today.
"The Every Day Book, The Table Book, and The Year Book, Hone's antiquarian and popular-cultural anthologies of the late 1820s-early 1830s, arranged by subject with a valuable introduction."
The Every Day Book or, Everlasting Calendar of Popular Amusements. London: Hunt and Clark, 1827
The content of the Every-Day Book is rather difficult to categorize. Partly an almanac, the book offers commentary and readings appropriate for each day of the year—there are listings of Saints' Days, for example, complete with selected descriptions of the "lives of the saints" and Hone's typically critical commentary on the lore of the "Romish church"; there is a "floral calendar" describing the flowers dedicated to particular days and also including some discussion of gardening practices appropriate to each season; there are frequent "Chronology" sections describing noteworthy occurrences that happened on such-and-such a date in history; etc. In addition, the form—perhaps formlessness—of the book allows Hone to insert all sorts of other diverse materials, including descriptions of popular customs, London street life, domestic practices, and biographical sketches, as well as various accounts and anecdotes drawn from the diverse stores of antiquarian lore and literature that Hone had discovered in his decades of research in the British Library and in his work in the antiquarian book trade. The result, of course, is a radically miscellaneous collection of "useful knowledge" for, as the title page announces, "daily use and diversion."
The every-day book and Table book : or, Everlasting calendar of popular amusements, sports, pastimes, ceremonies, manners, customs, and events, incident to each of the three hundred and sixty-five days, in past and present times; forming a complete history of the year, months, and seasons, and a perpetual key to the almanac ... for daily use and diversion. With four hundred and thirty-six engravings (1830)
YOU can tell a man by the books he keeps by his bed. Most civilised people have two sets of tomes. One set is kept onthe main book shelf while the other is placed adjacent to the bed. Space constraints limit the latter, but a dozen-two dozen books is the usual quota.
The bed-side book is forever. You can dip into it from ten to thirty minutes, or even longer. There are many, your reporter included, who suddenly wake up in the middle of the night feeling wide awake. It is then that the bed-side book comes to the rescue. You can open it anywhere; it gives you instant relief, soothes the nerves, lightens the gloom and puts you back to sleep.
Hone´s may be a bed side book, but it was not supposed to be literally at the bedside, but more in the sense a book "that comes to rescue", or for handy informations you could use.