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Berlin: Blaetter fuer die Kunst, 1907. 1st Edition. Hardcover. First edition of this work by one of Germany's most important poets. Inspired by the French symbolist poet Mallarmé's vision of art for its own sake, George devoted himself to the production of highly refined, often hermetic, poetry for an elite audience. Der Siebente Ring (The Seventh Ring) refers to the intimate group of devotees bound to George as Master and contains the extraordinary series of poems celebrating the youth in whose perfect beauty George saw an incarnation of godhead, the fourteen-year-old boy Max Kronberger. George eschewed all conventions and issued this work under the imprint of his own journal, Blaetter fuer Kunst, displaying the unique typography that George himself designed, with the elegant ornamented borders, mystical illustrations and book design of Melchior Lechter, so reminiscent of various fin-de-siecle crafts movements. A beautiful copy in the original purple linen with gilt ornaments and raised spine bands. Very light sunning to spine, a few very small stains to cover, gift inscription (not by the author) on endpaper (in the year of publication), small tear to front spine joint. Rare.
Berlin: Blaetter für die Kunst (1907). 4to. 53 pp. The lavishly produced tribute create by Stefan George to honor his talented young consort, Maximilian Kronberger. George's homosexuality is most clearly revealed in the love poetry he devoted to Kronberger, whom he identified as a manifestation of the divine. Kronberger died unexpectedly of meningitis in 1904 on the day after his 16th birthday. Deified by George, the cult of 'Maximin' became an integral part of the George circle. Printed in red and black with gold embossed cover drawing by Melchior Lechter and gilt edges. One of 200 numbered copies printed on Japanese paper, vellum boards, gilt edges, decorative devices throughout. photographic frontispiece. A stunning example of a very rare book.
Paris: L'Édition Moderne . 287pp. A novel centered around the story of Antinoüs and his love for the Emperor Hadrian. One of several collaborations between the two accomplished authors. A good copy in decorative wrappers, light wear to covers with small chips and closed tears to wrappers. It appears the original wrappers have been tipped on to a replacement paper spine. Warmly inscribed by both authors on endpaper.
Cannes: Chez l'Auteur (1955). 4to. A lavishly illustrated collection of "reportages" on nudism, homosexuels and various louche activities in Lyon. Illustrated throughout by Julien Pavil, along with eight color lithographs of various amusing couplings. Introduction by Pierre Mac Orlan. A very good copy in wrappers, this copy is warmly inscribed by the author on front endpaper. Very good in a very good cardboard slipcase. One of 450 numbered copies, although considerably scarcer than this limitation would indicate. Warmly inscribed by Grancher on front endpaper.
Oxford: Blackwell (1919). Ten short prose pieces with a mildly homoerotic bent similar to those in his "Dream Comrades". Green was a member of the Uranian group of poets, which included John Gambril Nicholson and others. Very good in green boards, slight rumple to spine. Inscribed on title page by the author.
Leipzig: Verlag Max Sphr (1904). 744 pp. The 1904 edition of this important yearbook of research on homosexuality by Dr. Magnus Hirschfeld. The Jahrbuch ran from 1899-1923 and is the most important record of such research ever accumulated. This example contains several essays on von Platen Hallermünde, essays by Hirschfeld and Benedict Friedlaender and Caspar Wirz. Several illustrations, as well as a bibliography of books with homosexual relevance recently published. A very nice copy in the original binding, very light wear to covers.
Leipzig: Max Spohr (1901). 616pp. The third volume of this long-running series, with works by Richard von Krafft-Ebing ("Recent studies in the field of homosexuality") and Magnus Hirschfeld ("Are sexual intermediates for marriage for?"), along with a detailed bibliography of homosexuality for the year 1900. Very good in original binding, light discoloration on spine from an old label, small ownership stamp on front pastedown, light edgewear and bumping to corners.
London. Elkin Mathews (1893). #2. This issue of the elegantly produced fin de siecle journal includes contributions by Verlaine, Arnold Dolmetsche and Horne and includes a frontispiece by Charles Shannon and a drawing by Simeon Solomon. A number of prominent writers and artists contributed to the journal (including Wilde, Symonds, Ernest Dowson and Lionel Johnson). Very good, light edge wear to covers, first pages lightly foxed, but very good overall. Laid into a custom linen chemise.
Paris: Librairie des connaissances médicales, . 120pp. One of a series of publications by the author on various subjects related to sexology. He recounts a number of case histories of homosexuals in Paris at the turn of the twentieth century, with numerous details on physical appearance, dress and behavior. Very good in original wrappers, light wear to covers. Uncommon.
[Alès] : [PAB] (1974). 12pp. One of several homoerotic works by Jouhandeau published by his friend Pierre-Andre Benoit. The works were all published anonymously and issued in very small editions. One of 40 numbered copies (#37), printed on heavyweight handmade paper. Near fine in original white printed wrappers.
[Paris: Marcel Sautier] 1954. 8vo. 92pp. These explicitly gay stories were written psuedonymously by Jouhandeau and only published under his own name after his death. Illustrated with 15 explicitly homoerotic line drawings by the noted Swiss artist, Elie Grekoff. The book was the product of a competition initiated by Florence Gould in 1954 to create the most original erotic work- the other books in the competition were Mandiargue's l'Anglais and Paulhan's l'Histoire d'O. Very good in original decorated wrappers with light wear. One of 150 copies on Marais (#133). Larivière, 367 ; Beurdeley, 275 ; BN, Enfer, n° 1498; Pia 1324; Monod 6452. Uncommon.
[Ankara] Forum . 246pp. Death in Troy is a novel of repressed homosexuality by popular Turkish writer Bilge Karasu (1930-1995). A young man growing up in a small coastal village comes of age in an atmosphere of sublimated, disoriented male eroticism. Governed by religious and sexual taboos, rigid gender roles, stifling maternal love, and the enforced silences of social decorum, he is driven to the point of insanity from which he slowly and painfully returns. Told from several points of view and structured in a series of intersecting flashbacks and interior monologues, the novel describes the difficult geography of male intimacy from multiple perspectives-adolescent friendship, homosexual desire, mother-son bonds, and those between men and women. Perhaps the most important modern gay Turkish novel. Very good in original wrappers, light wear to covers. Uncommon.
Paris: Impr. de J. Haumont (1945). 34pp. Sir Coleridge Arthur Fitzroy Kennard (1885-1948) was educated at Eton and circulated in Oscar Wilde's milieu (his mother financed the Epstein memorial for him at Pere Lachaise). He was also a great friend of Ronald Firbank and Vyvyan Holland and for many years was Firbank's most ardent supporter and literary confidant. One of several publications issued during his lifetime and surely one of the oddest- it might be argued that the book is in fact a spoof, created by a third party, to denigrate Kennard or bring amusement to others. The poems herein, all in English, are erotic to some extent, a number quite homoerotic: "O! let me calm/ Your fevered blood / Quick! Let me drink,/ Deep in the chasm,/ The growing flood/ Of your vast spasm!" One of 380 numbered copies, finely printed on Johannot, cream wrappers lightly worn. Rare.
Berolini : Impensis G. Reimeri (1831). A dissertation on the life and writings of Hecataeus by the German philologist. Hecataeus of Miletus was a Greek philosopher whose studies of the natural world and geography were among the most provocative of his generation. This text contains a study of early surveys of the ancient world. Rebound in Italian paper boards, leather spine label, with the ownership stamp of Norman Douglas on front pastedown. Light foxing throughout. Map. Rare.
Koh is a gay performance and visual artist who often used the term "asianpunkboy" to identify his works, which have been included in many notable collections. This is a boxed set to accompany his first solo exhibition, "The Whole Family" in 2003, comprising a list of elements for the show, a series of 21 lavender tinted portraits of one young man, short works by Bruce Labruce, AA Bronson, Matthias Herrmann, Richard Prince, Larry Clark, and Ryan McGinley (all relating to boys), a sample of lavender, a music CD, and a paper airplane. Housed in original cardboard clamshell box with blind-stamped pastedown label. Limited edition, one of 100 copies. Light wear to box, but the contents are fine as issued.
Paris: Urbain Canel (1826). 226pp. The controversial anonymous novel, originally attributed to the Duchesse Claire de Duras, created a scandal when published. The story revolves around a romantic intrigue that was in fact based upon the homosexual Marquis de Custine’s broken engagement to Duras’ daughter in 1820. Although never explicit, the novel was clearly designed to provoke and it actually prevented Duras from publishing her own similarly titled novel during her lifetime (it only appeaed in 1971). At one point in the novel, the narrator remarks, “Confidence was full and reciprocal between the two friends... except on one point, the subject of their loves....Olivier, in this matter, was reserved and excessively mysterious.” See Kilian, Nos ancêtres, les pervers: Reading Queerly and Constructing the Homosexual Before the Closet.