ROMANIAN

[Prince Matila Ghyka, Romanian diplomat and mathematician.] Autograph Letter Signed to ‘Mrs. Watson-Gandy’, regarding his engagements and his wife’s ‘Roumanian journey’.

Author: 
Prince Matila Ghyka [Prince Matila Costiescu Ghyka] (1881-1965), Romanian diplomat and mathematician, leading member of the post-war Romanian diaspora
Publication details: 
‘Saturday 3d [no month or year]; 20 Grosvenor Square, W. I [London], on cancelled letterhead of 30 Norfolk Crescent W.2.
£80.00

A highly-cultured individual, Ghyka moved in the literary circles of Paris (including that of Princess Bibesco, where he became a friend of Marcel Proust), New York (including Natalie Barney’s) and London, where he settled after the war. Salvador Dali and Peter Brook are said to have been influenced by his works on mathematical aesthetics. 2pp, 12mo. In fair condition, lightly aged and creased, with short closed tear at one edge. Folded once.

[British Embassy Medical Officer in Cold War Moscow and Bucharest.] Unpublished typed account by T. V. Humphreys of his journeys around Romania and Russia during five years of service, also describing medical aspects and 'Soviet methods of medicine'.

Author: 
Col. Thomas Victor Humphreys (b.1922), O.B.E., M.B., B.Ch., B.A.O, Royal Army Medical Corps, British Embassy Medical Officer at Moscow and Bucharest [USSR; Soviet Union; Iron Curtain; Russia; Romania]
Publication details: 
December 1952 to January 1953. Romania and the USSR (Russia). Russian locations: Moscow, Leningrad, Peterhof, Tsarskoe-Selo, Gatchina, Pavlovsk, Kharkov, Kiev.
£1,250.00

Biographical details regarding Humphreys are hard to come by. He features in two Times reports of the indisposition of the pianist Cyril Smith in Moscow in 1956 (8 May and 9 June). On his award of the OBE in the 1958 New Years Honours List he was described as 'lately First Secretary and Medical Officer at Her Majesty's Embassy in Moscow'. On his retirement in 1987 he was described as 'Col. T. V. Humphreys, O.B.E., M.B., B.Ch., B.A.O.

[ Eugène Ionesco, 'Theatre of the Absurd' playwright. ] Typescripts of two translations of his plays by Donald Watson: the 'original text' of 'The Bald Prima Donna. A Pseudo-Play in one act', and 'The Motor Show'.

Author: 
Eugène Ionesco (1909-1994), Franco-Romanian 'Theatre of the Absurd' playwright; Donald Watson, translator
Publication details: 
Neither translation dated, but both 'Copyright by DONALD WATSON, | 13 Oakley St., Chelsea, London.'
£300.00

Watson's translation of 'La Cantatrice Chauve' (1950) was first published in London by Calder in 1958, and his version of 'Le Salon de l'Automobile' (1951) by the same publisher in the fifth volume of Ionesco's plays in 1963. The two scripts typed in uniform style, on rectos of leaves, and stapled together. ONE: 'The Bald Prima Donna'. 19pp., 8vo. In good condition, on aged paper, with somewhat-appropriate child's markings in black ink on blank parts of first page.

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