John Moffatt (d.1830) of Failsworth [ now in Oldham ], Lancashire poet, Jacobin and tailor [ Elijah Ridings (1802-1872), poet and reformer; Henry 'Orator' Hunt (1773-1835), radical politician ]
One of the letters from Failsworth, Lancashire. The other without place, dated 7 April 1825. 'Poems dating from 1824, 1825 and 1826.
Moffatt is an interesting minor figure. In a 1924 piece titled 'Brief History of the Failsworth Pole', Rev. James Smith writes: 'The Jacobins' Club Library was kept in a room next to that in which Ben Brierley was born, and old John Moffatt, tailor, of "Crockey Hall," opposite the Pole, had charge of the Library'. Smith quotes lines which he considers 'remarkable for their patriotism', noting: 'He must have been a mild sort of Jacobin.' A total of sixteen pages, on eight leaves. On aged and worn paper, with loss at head of the first leaf of the second letter, resulting in some loss of text.
Matthew Arnold [ Lady Dorothy Neville, 'writer, hostess, horticulturist and plant collector']
First edition. London, Macmillan and Co., 1885
[xiv], 207pp., dark green cloth, corners bumped, mainly good to very good. A copy inscribed by Matthew Arnold to Lady Dorothy Neville, 'writer, hostess, horticulturist and plant collector', with a letter by Arnold concerning his gift of the book tipped in. Also with prined "From the Author" note enclosed (loose), a printed bookplate alleging "Stolen from Lady Dorothy Neville", and a newspaper clipping concerning Matthew Arnold's burial place tipped in. The letter from Arnold reads as follows: "Dear Lady Dorothy | The Fourth Party are excellent company, but Sunday is impossible for me.
1814. London: Printed by Thomas Davison, Whitefriars, for John Murray, Albemarle-street.
1st edition, 2nd issue. 8vo. In original plain grey wraps. Fly leaf and half-title. Pages: xi + 100 + 4 pages of publisher's advertisements (dated February 1814). Without the words 'THE END' or the publisher's imprint on the last page. In poor condition: grubby, frayed and stained, and with loss to one corner each of rear wrap and to last leaf of advertisements. Also lacking, as a result of the partial removal of an ownership inscription, a small strip along the top edge of the title-leaf, but with inscription 'Sophia F. Stewart - 1814'.
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882), American poet [ Elliott & Fry, London photographers ]
Both cartes de visite by Elliott & Fry, 55 Baker Street, Portman Square, London, England. [ 1868. ]
Both photographs 9 x 6 cm, laid down in the customary fashion on 10.5 x 6.5 cm card. Both in fair condition, lightly aged and worn. On the mounts beneath the photographs are the usual details of the photographer. In one case a facsimile of Longfellow's signature has been printed in the same place. Both mounts also have the studio's details on the reverse. On the mount carrying the facsimile signature, the printer is named as Marion & Co. of London and Paris. Both photographs are head and shoulders shots of the poet, formally attired in white shirt, waistcoat and jacket.
Heather Bigg, F.R.C.S. [ Henry Robert Heather Bigg ] (1853-1911); A. C. Benson (1862-1925), Master of Magdalene College, Cambridge ]
New Edition. London: Kegan Paul, Trench, Trübner, and Co., Ltd. 1901. Inscription dated November 1901.
ONE: Letter. 1 November 1901. On letterhead of 56 Wimpole Street, London. 3pp., 12mo. Bifolium. In good condition. With blank reverse of second leaf laid down onto a flyleaf of the book. Benson is not named, but is without doubt the recipient.
A. Manuscripts, ten pages total, various sizes (8vo-ish), listing in two small neat hands details of Waugh's life (some repetition), titles published by Waugh and manuscript material by him. As a sample, one list records MS. Minute Book, Hy Radcliffe Committee, Notes on N. Ireland, "3 more books: - jottings of dialect phrases, ideas for stories, articles, etc."One list has the note, "In Mr Albert Sutton's Waugh collection." Perhaps Sutton is author of the following? " A catalogue of books on Shakespeare & the drama... Offered for sale by Albert Sutton...Manchester.
Laurence Binyon [ Robert Laurence Binyon ] (1869-1943), English poet and scholar, Keeper of the Department of Prints and Drawings at the British Museum ]
From the British Museum, London, on cancelled letterhead of the Athenaeum, Pall Mall. 25 July 1920.
2pp., 12mo. In good condition, on lightly-aged paper, with thin strip of stub along one edge from previous mounting. He begins by apologising for having been 'so rude' in not answering the letter sooner. After explaining the cause, he continues: 'I fear I'm not much use for a society such as you are starting, because my life is so entirely without leisure. You see, I have only my evenings for doing my own work, & I am always about 3 years behind with the writing of the poems I have planned - to say nothing of the lectures & articles one has to write to eke out an income'.
Sylvia Lynd [ née Dryhurst ] (1888-1952), poet and Irish Nationalist, wife of journalist and essayist Robert Lynd (1879-1949) [ Sinn Fein ]
11 Downshire Hill, Hampstead, London, N.W. 30 December 1912.
4pp., 4to. In fair condition, on browned and brittle paper, with chipping and one closed tear repaired with archival tape. Manuscript note at head of first page, in the hand of her daughter Maire Gaister, identifying the probable recipient as Georgie Maquay, son of Florence Dryhurst's sister ' (so understandably in South America to escape her)'. The letter's salutation and valediction are in Gaelic.?>
Gerald Bullett (1893-1958), writer and broadcaster; his wife Rosalind Bullett [ Edith Marion Rosalind Barker, née Gould ] (1887-1982) [ James Guthrie, The Pear Tree Press, Bognor Regis ]
'This is one of 75 copies of White Frost a copyright poem by Gerald Bullett printed by James Guthrie at The Pear Tree Press Flansham Bognor Regis December 1936'. [ The Old Farm, East Harting, Sussex. ]
On piece of laid paper folded twice to make a 19 x 14 cm. card. In good condition, with light signs of age. Tiny printer's device on back cover the only illustration. Front cover in black ink reads: 'Christmas Greetings from Rosalind & Gerald Bullett The Old Farm East Harting Sussex'. Colophon in brown ink on left-hand side of opening. Right-hand opening carries the sixteen-line poem, in four four-line stanzas, the first of which reads: 'I went to the window, where the morning was, | And saw innocence scattered on the grass.
[ A.E. Housman ] Yutaka Takeuchi, compiler and editor.
Shohakusha Publishing Co., Ltd, Tokyo, 1971.
Pp.[VII], 4to, 1/4 lea, green boards, spine rubbed, contents good. Scarce. Ownership signature front free endpaper. "John Carter | August 28, 1972." in red ink and with corrective annotations by Carter of the three page Preface , also in red ink. WITH related enclosed ALS, TLS, four pamphlets, and a brochure. A. Autograph Letter Signed "Takata Takeuchi", author of the above, 2pp., 4to, to John Carter, 27 May 1972, asking after Carter's health, and explaining the delay in responding to Carter's letters.
John Masefield (1878-1867), Poet Laureate from 1930 to his death
Date and place not stated.
On 7 x 11 cm slip of paper, torn from the end of a letter. In fair condition, lightly aged, with minor staining to one corner. Reads, with top line slightly cropped: 'I may have more leisure. | Yours sincerely, | J. Masefield.'
Sir Theodore Martin (1816-1909), Scottish poet and translator, best-known for his 'Bon Gaultier Ballads'
On letterhead of 31 Onslow Square, S.W. [ London ] 10 March 1877.
1p., 12mo. In good condition, with small printed slip from catalogue pasted above letterhead. The recipient is named as 'Mr. Green | Claremont House | Clapton'. Reads: 'Madam | My autograph can be of little value to any one, but in compliance with your wish so courteously expressed I enclose it & am | Madam | Faithfully yours | Theodore Martin'.
Dinah Maria Craik [ born Dinah Maria Mulock; 'Miss Mulock'; 'Mrs Craik' ] (1826-1887), English novelist and poet
Without date or place. On envelope with printed address 'Far Country | Kitchens Lane | Mt. Airy, Penna.'
Written lengthwise on front of a 9 x 15.5 cm. envelope. In good condition, lightly aged. Reads: 'A. E. W. | I had a list of the autographs in thy literary collection but unfortunately have mislaid it. If there is a duplicate it wont make any difference because this is an uncessary little note of | D. M. C.' The page also carries annotations in another hand in light pencil.
Sir Edwin Arnold (1832-1904), English author, best-known for his poem 'The Light of Asia' [ Clara Angela Macirone (1821-1895), English pianist and composer ]
Two on letterhead of the Daily Telegraph, London; one from Sidcup and another from Kensington. Two dated from 1867, the others without years.
A total of 15pp., all but one of them 12mo. In good condition, lightly-aged. Six addressed to 'Miss Macirone' and the other to 'My dear Miss "Rosalind"'. The letters are written in a friendly and cordial tone, as the following two examples indicate. On 24 November 1867 he writes from the Daily Telegraph offices: 'It is very seldom that I am paid so richly for so litle work, as I have been by your kind & charming note, and by the pleasant little packet of blossom fr. Ardennes wh: accompanied it.
Mrs. Barbauld [ Anna Laetitia Barbauld; A. L. Barbauld; née Aikin ] (1743-1825), English poet and author
Place and date not stated.
On 1 x 4.5 cm. slip of paper, cut from the end of a letter, presumably in response to a request for an autograph. In good condition, with light signs of age. The lower part of three words from the line above the signature are present.
Ronald Duncan (1914-1982), poet, playwright and author, collaborator with Benjamin Britten
On letterhead of Welcombe, near Bideford, North Devon. 20 December 1950.
1p., 12mo. In fair condition, lightly aged and worn, with slight rusting at head from paperclip. He writes that there is 'no relationship between myself and any of the people you mention. I have no antecedents such as you suggest and I cannot recall having received a copy of your catalogue.' Turning to the character 'Horace' in his play 'Nothing Up My Sleeve' he writes: 'he's just a figment of my imagination and the whole play is just a piece of work without any intended resemblance to anyone, only types.' The carbon copy of Barry Duncan's letter is somewhat aged and worn around the edges.
John Warren, Lord De Tabley [ John Byrne Leicester Warren, 3rd Baron De Tabley ] (1835-1895), poet, numismatist and botanist
Both from 62 Elm Park Road, Chelsea, SW [ London ]. 3 July 1892 and 18 April 1894.
ONE: Letter. 1p., 12mo. In good condition, lightly aged. He cannot attend the breakfast club, as he is to be best man to a friend in Wimbledon at that time. He is 'rather too old for the character but all his other friends are married'. He would 'prefer the chat but, alas, it cant be managed'. TWO: Note. 1p., 12mo. In fair condition, on aged paper with slight damage at foot. He regrets that, being out of town, he will be unable to 'join the breakfast club' at the recipient's house.
Both on letterhead of A. Shedrow ('M.D. (Paris) M.R.C.S. (Eng.) L.R.C.P. (London)'), with addresses of his residence and consultation rooms in Johannesburg. 8 and 24 February 1958.
Each letter 2pp., 12mo. Both in good condition, on lightly-aged paper. He starts the first letter by expressing 'great pride and immense joy' in sending 'my seventh book of French poems [...] According to the reviews, it is the best I ever wrote'. He continues with references to the recipient's 'short but memorable visit to Johannesburg', and to 'the uncomplimentary remarks passed by my confreres in Johannesburg', these being 'indeed compliments, for they indicate that I do not belong to them, in spite of our common profession.
Alfred de Vigny [ Alfred Victor, Comte de Vigny ] (1797-1863), French romantic poet [ Eugène Guinot (1812-1861), French author ]
Without place or date.
On one side of an 8 x 13 cm piece of paper. In good condition, with light signs of age, and central horizontal fold. Firm, bold signature, 8 cm long, with underlining flourish. Beneath the signature, in a small hand, is the message: 'M Guinot | M: Vigny vous adresse son nom pour vous remercier il ne connait pas votre adresse'. Addressed on reverse, 'à M. Eug. Guinot'.
61 + pp., 16mo. Disbound. In fair condition, on aged paper. The last three pages carry advertisements of works by Waugh and Benjamin Brierley. Waugh's investigations in 'a quiet tract of country on the eastern border of Lancashire, lying in a corner, formed by the junction of the rivers Mersey and Irwell', involves him in meetings with ordinary folk, whose speech in the local dialect is recorded. Uncommon: five copies on COPAC, variously dated to 1867 and 1868.
Sir Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch [ pen-name 'Q' ] (1863-1944), Cornish poet and anthologist [ Harold Frederick (1856-98), London correspondent of New York Times; Frank Harris (1855-91), journalist ]
On letterhead of The Haven, Fowey, Cornwall. 23 November 1895.
An interesting letter regarding a celebrated Victorian scandal. In 1884 Frederic had come to England with his wife and five children as the London correspondent of the New York TImes. He set up a second household with Kate Lyon, with whom he had a further three children. Lyons was a Christian Scientist, and when Frederic suffered a stroke in 1898, she tried to cure him by faith healing. At the instigation of Mrs Frederic, Lyon was tried for manslaughter, but was acquitted. 4pp., 12mo. Bifolium. In good condition, lightly-aged.
George James Firmage (1928-2005), authority on e. e. Cummings [ Edward Estlin Cummings (1894-1962); Marion Morehouse Cummings (1906-69); 'Oscar Williams' [ pen-name of Oscar Kaplan (1900-1964)] ]
Most items from New York City. Dating from between 1962 and 1972.
George James Firmage was born in New York; attended Massachusetts Institute of Technology (1947-48) and College of the City of New York (1949); BA, New York University, 1952; pursued graduate study, University of Massachusetts, 1952-54; publications supervisor in advertising and marketing services department, First National City Bank, New York, 1954; wrote several books, including E.E. Cummings: a Miscellany (1958) and E.E. Cummings: a Bibliography; editor of A Garland for Dylan Thomas (1963) and of E.E. Cummings' Three Plays and a Ballet (1967).
Both items dated 16 March 1917, from 4 Magdalen Road, Wellsway, Bath.
One page each, note and poem, creased, chipped, small closed tears, texts clear and complete. Letter: "Many thanks for your favour of the 12th inst. I have pleasure in enclosing the lines I undertook to send you & hope you will like them. If you will kindly let me know approximate date of sale I will try to get them published with an explanatory note as to their object." Typed poem, 4 verses, commencing "O, let us not, while many voices plead, | And nearer claims confront us day by day [...]". Apparently unpublished.
Sir Alexander James Beresford Beresford Hope [ Alexander Hope; A. J. B. Hope; A. J. B. Beresford Hope ] (1820-1887), Tory politician and author
Bedgebury Park, Cranbrook [ Kent ]. 4 February 1858.
3pp., 12mo. Writing in a difficult hand, he thanks him for his very curious & interesting letter respecting Chr. Smart, of whose birthplace I had been previously ignorant, tho' his name was not unknown to me in connection with Horace'.
A friend of Dylan Thomas and a leading poet of the 1930s London literary scene, Dyment is the subject of a warm appreciation by Robert Graecen in The Times, 8 June 1971. The present collection consists of a series of amusing poems regarding various members of the animal kingdom. ONE: Typescript of 'Fur, Feather, and Fin | by | Clifford and Marcella Dyment'. Address at foot of title-page: 'Flat 5, 53, Harrington Gardens, London, S.W.7.' 46pp., 8vo. Internally in good condition, on lightly-aged paper.
Sir James Crichton-Browne (1840-1938), Scottish physician and psychiatrist [ Alfred Perceval Graves (1846-1931), Irish poet ]
On letterhead of 45 Hans Place, SW1 [ London ]. 17 November 1919.
3pp., 12mo. Bifolium. Very good, on lightly-aged paper. He finds that he will be able to arrange 'a course of 3 afternoon lectures for you on Welsh and Irish Music . . at the Royal Institution during next week'. He asks Graves to 'communicate with the Assistant Secretary as to date and exact title'. He ends by stating the fee.
Joseph Warton (1728-1790), Poet Laureate [ Trinity College, Oxford ]
No place. 16 July 1767.
On one side of 11 x 18.5 cm piece of paper. In good condition, lightly aged and creased. On reverse is small circular printed paper label of the Ray Rawlins Collection. Reads: 'July 16 1767 Received of Hugh Rogers Esqr the Above Sum in Full for His Son till Last Whitsuntide | by me | Jos. Warton'. Hugh Rogers of Helston, had a son, John, at Trinity, Oxford, presuambly tutored by Warton.
S. Gertrude Ford, poet, journalist, suffragist and methodist, born in the Rossendale Valley, Lancashire [ probably sister of Cicely Ford (1876-1960) of Girton College, social worker and deaconess ]
The first three letters from Chelmsford Cottage, Pine Rd, Winton, Bournemouth. 20 November 1905, and 4 and 11 January 1906. Fourth letter from Heather Cottage, Withermore Rd, Winton, Bournemouth, 20 July 1907. Poem dated October 1903.
Ford's first book of verse was 'Sung by the Way', published in Blackburn in 1905. She published several volumes of patriotic poetry: 'Poems of War and Peace' (1915), 'A Crown of Amaranth' (with Erskine Macdonald, 1915), 'Our Heroes' (1916); 'A Fight to a Finish' (1917). Other volumes include 'Lyric Leaves' (1912) and 'The England of my Dream' (1928). She edited the series of 'Little Books of Georgian Verse', 1915-1916. Her 'Lessons in Verse-Craft' was published in 1919 with a second edition in 1923. Her song 'In the Twilight' (1923) was set to music by Harry Brookes.
Mitchell S. Buck [Mitchell Starrett Buck] (1887-1959), American poet, translator and classical scholar, praised by H. L. Menken [ Franz Felix (1892-1967), American artist of Austrian extraction ]
Typescript without place or date. Letter on letterhead of Vapor Engineering Company, Philadelphia. 10 September 1928.
Both letter and typescript in good condition, on lightly-aged paper. In envelope with three postmarks between 9 and 11 September 1928, addressed 'For: Franz Felix, Esq. | Apt. 3-c | 790 Riverside Drive, | New York City.' LETTER: 1p., 4to. He explains that he is sending the 'MS' [sic] that day by registered mail, and asks Felix to keep it 'strictly confidential for the present', adding that he has 'not even told Mr. Brown [his publisher] what it is about'. If Felix has time to 'make up a sketch' Buck will collect it and take it to Brown.