POET

[Chauncy Hare Townshend, poet, clergyman and dilettante.] Autograph Letter Signed ('C. Hare Townshend') [to George Cruikshank] explaining that he will never let his 'favourite picture', Cruikshank's 'Cinderella' quit his walls, or have it retouched.

Author: 
Chauncy Hare Townshend [born Townsend] (1798-1868), poet, clergyman, collector, dilettante, friend of Charles Dickens [George Cruikshank; Victoria an Albert Museum, London, Hampstead Conversazione]
Publication details: 
21 Norfolk Street, Park Lane [London]; 29 April 1859.
£180.00

2pp, 12mo. Bifolium. In good condition, lightly aged, with thin strip of paper from mount adhering to the reverse of the blank second leaf. The unnamed recipient is the artist George Cruikshank, and the present letter is a reply to a letter from Cruikshank among the Townshend papers at Wisbech, dating from the previous day (28 April 1859). In that letter Cruikshank asks to borrow back his painting 'Cinderella', in order to add some touches to it, and exhibit it at the Hampstead Conversazione. The painting is among those bequeathed by Townshend to the Victoria and Albert Museum, London.

[Bryan Waller Procter (the poet 'Barry Cornwall'), as Commissioner in Lunacy.] Autograph Letter Signed ('B. W. Procter'), asking a colleague (Harris?] for information about the 'Conduct' of 'some patients', 'particularly about Miss Anne [Lealer?].

Author: 
Bryan Waller Procter (1787-1874), poet under pseudonym 'Barry Cornwall' and Commissioner in Lunacy, 1832-1861, member of London Magazine circle, friend of Charles Lamb, Thackeray and Wilkie Collins
Publication details: 
On letterhead of the Office of Commissioners in Lunacy, 19 New Street, Spring Gardens [London]. 12 August 1847.
£120.00

Proctor was a much loved individual in literary circles, from the days of the London Magazine to the mid-Victorian period, in which he was the dedicatee of both Thackeray's 'Vanity Fair' and Wilkie Collins's 'Woman in White'. His reputation as a poet was international: he was thought highly of by Pushkin. 1p, 12mo. In good condition, lightly aged, with thin strip of paper from mount adhering to blank reverse. The letter reads: 'Dear [Harris?] | Pray tell me where [?] I can have some conversation with you about some patients of the name of [Lealer? Lester?], whom you know.

[A. C. Benson, Master of Magdalene College, Cambridge, poet, essayist and ghost story writer.] Autograph Signature ('Arthur Christopher Benson') on leaf from diary.

Author: 
A. C. Benson [Arthur Christopher Benson] (1862-1925), essayist, poet and ghost story writer, Master of Magdalene College, Cambridge, author of the words to 'Land of Hope and Glory'
Publication details: 
No place or date. [On leaf from 'The Meredith Birthday Book', published in London in 1898.]
£25.00

On 17 x 12 cm leaf of thickish paper, removed from 'The Meredith Birthday Book'. In good condition, lightly aged and worn. Scratchy signature, underlined. In one of three printed boxes of red rules on one side of the leaf, the other side bearing quotations from George Meredith for the days 25 to 27 April.

[Charles Williams, poet and author (the Inklings), to the playwright Christopher Fry.] Autograph Letter Signed, Typed Letter Signed and Typed Card Signed (all 'C. W.'), in copy of his 'Thomas Cranmer of Canterbury', with Fry's ownership signature.

Author: 
Charles Williams (1886-1945), English poet and author, a member of the Inklings [Christopher Fry (1907-2005), playwright]
Publication details: 
Autograph Letter from Southfield House, 1941. Typed Letter, 1942, and Typed Card, 1944, both on Oxford University Press letterheads.
£450.00

The letters are in fair condition, lightly aged; the card is discoloured and stained. Loosely inserted in a copy of Williams's 'Thomas Cranmer of Canterbury', 75 + [1]pp, 8vo, with the ownership signature 'Christopher Fry' on the front free endpaper, in worn binding with fraying at head of spine. Delightful and revealing letters, mixing personal and business (Williams worked for the Oxford University Press and Fry was published by them). ONE: ALS from Southfield House, 17 December 1941. 2pp, 12mo. Thirty lines of closely-written text, on a leaf of ruled paper torn from a notebook.

[Christopher Fry ownership inscription to a book by Charles Williams.] The House of the Octopus. [A Play in Three Acts]

Author: 
Charles Williams [Christopher Fry; the Inklings]
Publication details: 
London: Edinburgh House Press, 2 Eaton Gate, S.W.1. 1945.
£60.00

115pp, 12mo. In good condition: sound and tight, on browning War Economy paper, in green cloth with slight bloom, and in slightly worn and chipped browning dustwrapper. (The subtitle 'A Play in Three Acts' features on the dustwrapper, but not on the title-page.) Fry's ownership inscription 'Christopher Fry' is in blue ink at the top right-hand corner of the recto of the front free endpaper. A verse drama from the library of the leading twentieth-century English exponent of the genre, after T. S. Eliot.

[Christopher Fry ownership inscription to a book by Charles Williams.] The Region of the Summer Stars.

Author: 
Charles Williams [Christopher Fry; the Inklings]
Publication details: 
Editions Poetry London. 1944.
£450.00

55pp, 8vo. In fair condition, internally tight and sound, on browning paper, in lightly-worn blue cloth binding. No dustwrapper. Slight dink at head of spine. Ownership inscription 'Christopher Fry' in blue ink at top right-hand corner of recto of front free endpaper. Fry and Williams were on cordial terms, the latter working for Oxford University Press and the former being published by them.

[W. H. Davies, Welsh poet, author of 'Autobiography of a Super-Tramp'.] Four Typed Letters Signed, encouraging the writing of 'Mr Harris', i.e. Christopher Fry. With Fry's copy of Davies's 'Ambition and Other Poems' and poem in Fry's autograph.

Author: 
W. H. Davies [William Henry Davies] (1871-1940), Welsh poet and author of 'Autobiography of a Super-Tramp' [Christopher Fry (1907-2005), playwright]
Publication details: 
The first two letters on letterhead of Malpas House, Oxted; the last on letterhead of The Crofts, Nailsworth, the third from Shenstone, Nailsworth. Between 23 March 1928 and 16 May 1935. Book: London: Jonathan Cape, 1929.
£850.00

The letters are in fair condition, lightly aged and worn, except for the third, which is damp-stained with closed tears at head and foot. The book is in fair condition, without dust wrapper. All four letters are signed 'W. H. Davies.' The first three are addressed to 'Mr Harris', and the last (an ANS rather than an ALS) to 'Mr Fry'. Each is 1p, 12mo. Letter One: 23 March 1928; Malpas House, Oxted. After reading his poem, Davies states, 'I begin to think you ought to take some step towards publishing, as soon as you have enough material.

[William Henry Davies, Welsh poet, author of 'Autobiography of a Super-Tramp'.] Signed Limited Edition of 'Secrets | by | W. H. Davies'. With photographic print of 'The Poet's Cottage' with Davies's poem 'Nailsworth Hill'.

Author: 
W. H. Davies [William Henry Davies] (1871-1940), Welsh poet and author of 'Autobiography of a Super-Tramp'
Publication details: 
BOOK: London: Jonathan Cape Ltd, 11 Gower Street. 1924. Number 84 of 100 signed copies. [Printed by Butler and Tanner, Frome and London.] PHOTOGRAPH: By DeCroce Studio, Denver, Colorado. No date.
£65.00

BOOK: 48pp, 8vo. Quarter-bound with purple crushed tissue boards and cream vellum-paper spine. No dustwrapper. Internally in good condition, in fair binding with gilt on spine slightly dulled, and two bumps at the head of the back board. Colphon on reverse of first leaf (Davies's autograph in square brackets): 'Of this edition of Secrets have been printed 100 copies for sale, each copy signed by the author | Copy number [84] | [W. H. Davies.]' A collection of forty poems, each on a single page and many with a vignette at the foot of the page.

[Leonard Welsted, poet and 'Dunce'] Autograph Signature "Leond Welsted"

Author: 
Leonard Welsted, poet and 'Dunce'
Publication details: 
No place or date.
£120.00

Piece with signature cut from larger document, c.9 x 3cm, edges indiate it's the bottom left of a document, part image, decorative, of a key and the letters ML with his signature beside. Note: Welsted married a daughter of Henry Purcell, antagonistic towards Scriblerians etc. See DNB.

[Robert Graves's first book, published while a First World War Subaltern.] Over the Brazier.

Author: 
Robert Graves; Claud Lovat Fraser
Publication details: 
London: The Poetry Bookshop, 35 Devonshire Street, Theobalds, Road, W..C. 1916. ['SECOND IMPRESSION' printed on front cover.]
£50.00

32pp, small 8vo. Yapp-bound in grey card wraps, with the front cover carrying an illustration (by Claud Lovat Fraser), coloured in blue and red. Printed at top right of the front cover: 'SECOND IMPRESSION', but no other indication that this is the case. Publisher's advertisements inside the covers. The book itself crudely printed on cheap paper. Internally in fair condition, on high-acidity paper discoloured with age; in aged and worn wraps with chipping to the edges. Twenty-six poems, beginning with 'The Poet in the Nursery' and ending with the title-poem. The start of an illustrious career.

[Sir Henry Taylor's 'peculiarly severe' poem on Caroline Norton.] Autograph Manuscript of untitled poem beginning 'Soft be the voice & friendly that rebukes | The error of thy way'.

Author: 
Sir Henry Taylor (1800-1886), poet and dramatist, civil servant at the Colonial Office [Caroline Norton (1808-1877), social reformer and fighter for women's rights]
Publication details: 
Without place or date. [Circa 1847.]
£200.00

2pp, 12mo. On a bifolium of grey laid paper, with fleur-de-lys 'J M & Co' watermark. In good condition, lightly aged, with creases from having been neatly folded three times, and stub adhering to edge of blank second leaf of bifolium. The item derives from the collection of a notable nineteenth-century autograph collector, Lord Houghton, a friend of both Taylor and Norton.

[Rev. Charles Edward Kennaway, Vicar of Chipping Campden and Canon of Gloucester Cathedral.] Autograph Letter Signed to 'Sabrina', ruminating on youth and age, with inscribed copy of his book 'Poems of the Rev. C. E. Kennaway, M.A.'

Author: 
Rev. C. E. Kennaway, M.A. [Charles Edward Kennaway (1800-1875), Vicar of Chipping Campden and Canon of Gloucester Cathedral]
Publication details: 
Book: London: Francis and John Rivington. Cheltenham: Henry Davies. 1846. Letter: Campden Vicarage. 30 October 1868.
£220.00

The son of Sir John Kennaway of the East India Company, Kennaway was well-connected. In 1819 Poet Laureate Robert Southey provided him with a letter of introduction to Walter Scott. ONE: 'Poems of Rev. C. E. Kennaway, M.A.' (1846). xv + 216pp, 12mo. Black leather binding, with stamp of Nisbet & Co, 21 Berners Street, London, on front free endpaper.in gilt, stamped with the words 'Bagster's Binding'; all edges gilt. Internally a good tight copy on lightly-aged paper; in worn binding, especially at the spine and hinges. Bookplate of Sarah Godley.

[Diane Ackerman, poet, to the playwright Christopher Fry, with a presentation copy of her first book.] Typed Letter Signed praising his work, accompanying an inscribed copy of her poetry collection 'The Planets | A Cosmic Pastoral'.

Author: 
Diane Ackerman (born 1948), American poet, essayist, and naturalist [Christopher Fry (1907-2005), English playwright]
Publication details: 
Letter from 126 Texas Lane, Ithaca, NY, USA. 20 September 1976. Book published in New York by William Morrow and Company, Inc., 1976.
£650.00

ONE: TLS. Ithaca, NY; 20 September 1976. 1p, 4to. In good condition, lightly aged. The letter begins: 'Dear Christopher Fry, | I so relish climbing the castellations of your wit, to where I feel energized and deliriously long-sighted, or running higgledy-piggledy with your thoughts, at times as if with the bulls of Pamplona, I simply cannot resist telling you so any longer.' According to her 'internal calculations' she owes him 'at least a galaxy for the delight your plays have given me; perhaps you'd accept these few planets instead'.

[Charles Causley, Cornish poet.] Three Typed Letters Signed (all 'Charles Causley') to Ian McPherson, discussing proposed readings, and the difficulty of fitting in 'teaching and writing comitments with other activities'.

Author: 
Charles Causley [Charles Stanley Causley] (1917-2003), Cornish poet [Ian McPherson]
Publication details: 
All three on Causley's letterhead, 2 Cyprus Well, Launceston, Cornwall. 9 December 1974; 20 July 1975; 2 December 1976.
£200.00

All three 1p, landscape 12mo. All in good condition, lightly aged. ONE: 9 December 1974. He thanks him for 'the invitation […] But as I'm teaching full-time here now, this would be very difficult to arrange as far as schools visits would be concerned. (I asked the Arts Council to take my name off the schools list, but they don't seem to have done so).' He suggests a 'reading during the holiday break, perhaps. One aimed principally at adults, I mean.' The 'London Poetry Secretariat/Arts Council link-up' might 'provide some kind of subsidy'.

[A. C. Benson, Master of Magdalene College, Cambridge, poet, essayist and ghost story writer.] Autograph Letter Signed ('Arthur C Benson'), thanking an unnamed lady for the 'encouragement' of a 'kind & sympathetic letter'.

Author: 
A. C. Benson [Arthur Christopher Benson] (1862-1925), essayist, poet and ghost story writer, Master of Magdalene College, Cambridge, author of the words to 'Land of Hope and Glory'
Publication details: 
On letterhead of Hinton Hall, Haddenham, Isle of Ely. 11 June 1907.
£35.00

1p, 12mo. In good condition, folded twice. The recipient is not identified. Reads: 'Dear Madam, | I must send you one line to thank you for your kind & sympathetic letter, which has not only given me real pleasure but encouragement as well. It was good of you to write. | Very truly yours | Arthur C Benson'.

[Edward Lear, Victorian nonsense poet and artist.] Autograph Signature cut from letter.

Author: 
Edward Lear (1812-1888), nonsense poet and populariser of the Limerick, artist, author
Publication details: 
No date or place.
£75.00

On slip of grey paper, roughly 4 x 13.5 cm. In fair condition, lightly aged, with traces of paper from mount adhering to the blank reverse. With two unobtrusive vertical fold lines. Reads: 'Kindest regards | Yours sincerely | Edward Lear.'

[V-Letter from Karl Shapiro to George Barker, written in publication year of Shapiro's 'V-Letter and other Poems'.] A V-Mail [Victory Mail] letter (i.e. photographic print of autograph letter), praising Barker and criticising current 'War Poetry'.

Author: 
Karl Shapiro [Karl Jay Shapiro] (1913-2000), American poet [George Barker (1913-1991), English poet]
Publication details: 
A V-Mail [Victory Mail] letter. San Francisco. February 1944.
£500.00

An interesting communication from one noted twentieth-century English-language poet to another, and of additional significance as a V-Letter written in the year of publication of Shapiro's first successful collection, the Pulitzer Prize winning 'V-Letter and Other Poems' (1944). (See Diederik Oostdijk, 'The Wartime Success of Karl Shapiro's V-Letter' (2006).) The present item is a V-Mail [Victory Mail] letter: a 13.5 x 11 cm photograph print of an autograph letter bearing the censor's stamp.

[Catherine Macready, poet, daughter of the actor William Charles Macready.] Holograph Poem, signed 'CFBM', titled 'To Miss A. S. Dobree' [identified as Anne Saumarez Dobree in a note by the recipient's sister].

Author: 
Catherine Macready [Catherine Frances Birch Macready] (1834-1869), poet, daughter of the actor William Charles Macready (1793-1873) and family friend of Charles Dickens [Anne Saumarez Dobrée [Dobree]]
Publication details: 
Without place or date.
£250.00

Catherine Macready was the author of 'Leaves from the Olive Mount' (1860, dedicated to her father), 'Cowl and Cap; or, The Rival Churches' (1865) and 'Devotional Lays' (1868). She worked among the Cheltenham poor, died on a voyage to Madeira, and was buried at sea. 2pp, landscape 8vo. Aged and worn, and folded several times. Tipped in onto part of a leaf of thick paper removed from an album. A pencil note at the head of the first page of the poem states: 'My Sister Anne Saumarez', and another pencil note at the end of the poem reads 'Kate Macready'.

[ Brinley Richards, Welsh Composer ] Autograph Letter Signed "Brinley Richards" to the "Editor of The Principality" [not traced]

Author: 
Brinley Richards [Henry Brinley Richards (1817–1 May 1885), Welsh composer and poet]
Publication details: 
[Headed] 25 St Mary Abbot's Terrace, Kensington, W., 8 Oct. 1877
£200.00

Two pages, 12mo, bifolium, good condition. "I am much obliged by your kindness in sending a copy of The Prinipality Oct. 6th. I have read it with great pleasure & hope your efforts will be crowned with success - I am glad to see that [elision] - while endeavouring to raise the standard of literature in Wales- you intend to maintain our Nationality [underlined] in the best sense of the word

[Walter de la Mare answers the question 'What does "The Listeners" mean?'] Typed Letter Signed ('Walter de la Mare') to Sonia Drynan, explaining, with a quotation from Lewis Carroll, his position on the meaning of the poem.

Author: 
Walter de la Mare (1873-1956), poet and short story writer
Publication details: 
On letterhead of Hill House, Taplow, Buckinghamshire. 21 December 1936.
£400.00

De la Mare's definitive answer to the oft-asked question regarding the meaning of his best-known poem - and also one of the most celebrated English poems of the twentieth century - 'The Listeners'. 1p, 4to, in good condition, lightly aged, folded twice. After thanking her for her 'kind letter', he adds: 'I am afraid you may not find my answer to your question a very satisfactory one.

[William Shenstone of the Leasowes, poet and landscape gardener.] Autograph Ownership Inscription on flyleaf of book: 'Guillaume Shenstone du College de Pembroke en Oxford'.

Author: 
William Shenstone (1714-1763) of the Leasowes, poet and landscape gardener
Publication details: 
[Pembroke College, Oxford.] 1734.
£200.00

On one side of what is clearly a fly-leaf removed from a book. In fair condition, aged and worn, skilfully placed in a windowpane mount of cream paper, to which a white stub still adheres. Written in a small hand at the head of the recto: 'Guillaume Shenstone | du College de Pembroke | en Oxford. | 1734.'

[ Arthur Caddick; poet; pamphlet ] The Speech of Phantoms. Crescendo Poetry Series No 1

Author: 
Arthur Caddick
Publication details: 
Sept 1 1951. Printed and Published at The Latin Press, St Ives, the Private Press of Guido Morris.
£25.00

Pamphlet, [16]pp. (inc.wraps). 8vo. beige wraps, sl. grubby, mainly v.g.

[Lord Rochester (John Wilmot, 2nd Earl of Rochester), poet and libertine.] Seventeenth-century manuscript of poem titled 'The Earle of Rochester on Sr Car Scroope', an apocryphal piece with first line: 'Half man half Brute, for foole is both between'

Author: 
Lord Rochester [John Wilmot, 2nd Earl of Rochester] (1647-1680), Restoration poet and libertine [Sir Carr Scroope]
Publication details: 
Without place or date. (Seventeenth century.)
£400.00

1p, 12mo. On unwatermarked laid paper. In fair condition, aged and spotted, with stub from mount adhering. In a seventeenth-century hand, and simply consisting of the poem and its title 'The Earle of Rochester on Sr Car Scroope'.

[Coventry Patmore, poet.] Autograph Signature ('Coventry Patmore') beneath Autograph quotation of four lines from his own poem, 'The Angel in the House'.

Author: 
Coventry Patmore [Coventry Kersey Dighton Patmore] (1823-1896), poet
Publication details: 
Without place or date.
£250.00

1p, 12mo. Folded twice. In good condition. Presumably in response to a request for an autograph, the central third of the page carries Patmore's signature ('Coventry Patmore.') beneath a four-line quotation from Patmore's best-remembered poem, 'The Angel in the House': 'Spirit of Knowledge, grant me this: | A simple heart and subtle wit | To praise the thing whose praise it is | That all which can be praised is it!'

[ Humphry Davy; Romantic Poets ] Holograph of two poems written by Humphry Davy, "The Tempest" (signed "D [1796?]") and "[On] Mount's Bay" (signed "HD")

Author: 
Humphry Davy, "first rank" chemist and poet
Publication details: 
[1796] and [1798 watermark respectively]
£4,500.00

A. "The Tempest", 2pp. cr.8vo, apparently formerly in an album, with numbers in a different hand ("(136)" and "60" ("On Mounts Bay" below numbered "(137) and "59") and "5" adjacent to ascription to "Sir H. Davy"), trimmed with minor loss of text. A footnote in the volume of the Collected Works in which the poem is printed, reveals that the MS poem was found among the papers of a Dr Cardew who had added a note concerning Davy's authorship (as described above).

[Richard Garnett, biographer and poet.] Autograph Letter Signed ('R. Garnett') to 'Mrs. Epps', regarding the forthcoming visit of her party to the British Museum.

Author: 
Richard Garnett (1835-1906), biographer and poet, Assistant Keeper of Printed Books in the British Museum
Publication details: 
On letterhead of the British Museum [London]. 'Saturday' [no date].
£56.00

1p., 12mo. In fair condition, aged and spotted. Reads: 'Dear Mrs. Epps, | I shall be very glad to see you and your party this afternoon; or, if I am not able to be with you, an assistant shall meet you in the hall at 3.'

[Matthew Arnold, poet and educationalist.] Autograph Signature with date.

Author: 
Matthew Arnold (1822-1888), celebrated poet and critic
Publication details: 
1 February 1868. Place not stated.
£120.00

In very good condition, on 12mo leaf, with light horizontal folds above and below the signature. Clearly written in response to a request for an autograph. Excellent underlined signature, firm and bold, centred on the page, and reading: 'Matthew Arnold. | February 1st, 1868.' Arnold is one of the great Victorian poets, author of 'Dover Beach' and 'The Scholar Gypsy'.

[George Dyer, poet and English Jacobin, writes to the Earl of Buchan following a visit to his seat, Dryburgh Abbey, Berwickshire.] Substantial Autograph Letter Signed ('G Dyer'), discussing the preparation of his volume of poems and other topics.

Author: 
George Dyer (1755-1841), poet and radical, leading English Jacobin, in circle of Wordsworth, Coleridge, Godwin, Lamb; David Steuart Erskine, 11th Earl of Buchan (1742-1829), Scottish antiquarian
Publication details: 
Cambridge. Undated, but written shortly before the publication of his poems in 1801.
£2,000.00

3pp., 4to. Bifolium. In good condition, lightly aged, with thin stub from mount neatly adhering. A long, closely written letter of 116 lines, including eight-line postscript at head of first page. Addressed by Dyer on reverse of second leaf: 'To Lord Buchan | Dryburgh Abbey | Berwickshire | Scotland.' Buchan has annotated the reverse of the second leaf: 'George Dyer | Characteristic | while I reasoned with George Dyer in my Library at Dryburgh Abbey on the Economy of Nature and the Providence of God, I said Heaven itself will one day bear witness to my Words.

[Lady Margaret Sackville, poet and lover of Ramsay MacDonald.] 'The Double House and other poems'.

Author: 
Margaret Sackville [Lady Margaret Sackville (1881-1963), poet and children's author, first President of the Poetry Society, lover of Labour prime minister Ramsay MacDonald]
Publication details: 
1935. Williams & Norgate Ltd, London. [The Whitefriars Press Ltd, London and Tonbridge.]
£80.00

32pp., 12mo. In blue-green card wraps with light blue-green printed label on front cover. In very good condition. Twenty-four poems in the Georgian idiom, some of which had previously appeared in Country Life, Chamber's Journal, Observer, Harper's Bazaar abd the Glasgow Herald.. Now uncommon. Six copies on COPAC.

[Lady Margaret Sackville, poet and lover of Ramsay MacDonald; book] Presentation inscription on copy of her 'The Double House and other poems'.

Author: 
Margaret Sackville [Lady Margaret Sackville (1881-1963), poet and children's author, first President of the Poetry Society, lover of Labour prime minister Ramsay MacDonald]
Publication details: 
1935. Williams & Norgate Ltd, London. [The Whitefriars Press Ltd, London and Tonbridge.]
£180.00

32pp., 12mo. In blue-green card wraps with light blue-green printed label on front cover. In good condition, lightly aged. Florid ownership inscription in thick black ink at front: 'Margaret (Sackville) | to | Henrietta | with love | 1936.' A question mark has been deleted in one poem, presumably by Sackville. Twenty-four poems in the Georgian idiom, some of which had previously appeared in Country Life, Chamber's Journal, Observer, Harper's Bazaar abd the Glasgow Herald. Now uncommon. Six copies on COPAC.

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