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Monaco (1965) 4to. A lavishly produced memorial tribute to the Comtesse de Polignac, who for many years was at the center of the artistic and social life of Paris. She was the daughter of the couturier, Jeanne Lanvin and belonged just as much to the music world as she did to the fashion world. Janet Flanner commented, "She had a voice like a well-trained lark." Salvador Dalí wrote in My Secret Life, "In spring it was very pleasant at Comtesse Marie-Blanche de Polignac's, where from the garden one listened to string quartets played in the interior, all aflame with candles and the Renoir paintings." This collection consists of tributes by an array of her friends and colleagues, including Lady Diana Cooper, Colette, Louise de Vilmorin, Jean Cocteau, Marcel Achard, Boris Kochno, Emilio Terry, Roderick Cameron and many others. Illustrations by Bérard, Jean Hugo, Picasso, Stravinsky and others. Numerous facsimiles and photographs laid into the text. Very good in chemise and clamshell box, some offsetting to box and small stain. Copy LXIII printed for Robert Veyron-Lacroix (one of 153 special copies).
Paris: Librarie de la Plume (1901). 330pp. Liane de Pougy was a famed courtesan of Belle Èpoque France and Folies Bergères dancer, one of the most famous women of her generation. This novel chronicles her lesbian affair with Natalie Barney, whom she encountered in a dance hall in 1899. They maintained a close personal relationship for the rest of their lives and had a long and voluminous correspondence. Very good in original lightly worn and sunned wrappers, edgewear and small tears, small stamp to cover, endpapers lightly foxed, bound in 1/2 marbled boards. Quite uncommon.
Utrecht: From the Ballroom (1993). A fairy tale and a song printed under the direction of the master printer, Ger Gleis. The edition is published letterpress and the musical score by the composer, Joost Kleppe is included at the end. A beautifully printed edition, bound in 1/2 vellum and decorative Farbiano paper (with designs by Purdy) and slipcased. One of an small number of special copies, signed by Purdy and Joost Kleppe. The entire edition numbered 111 copies. Near fine in paper slipcase.
Paris; Monnier & cie (1886). 387pp. mention of 8th ed (perhaps fictive). A classic of French decadent writing, this novel tells the tale of Mary Barbe, an unloved girl who learns to counteract the cruelty of her upbringing by exploiting her sexuality. She ruthlessly crushes the men who fall in love with her until she meets a young medical student (prone to nosebleeds) who allows her to take out her sadistic fantasies upon him. An early feminist tale- Mary is never punished for her transgressions; she grows in power and depravity, with ‘a heart serene and a dagger raised.’ Very good in original decorative wrappers, lightly worn and sunned. Quite uncommon.
Torino: Fratelli Bocca Editori (1896). 112pp. The author's defense of homosexuality, which was extensively expanded in his Uranisme et Unisexualité: étude sur différentes manifestations de l'instinct sexuel, which appeared the following year. This is the first appearance in Italian of the work and contains the essay "Il Processo Oscar Wilde," the first essay on Wilde to appear after hsi prosecution the year before. Very good in later buckram boards, bookplate on front paste-down, booksellers sticker on first prelim., signature on title page and notes on final page. The final page has the stamp of Manoel Lacerda, one of the most influential figures of the radical left of the Republican movement in Portugal. His signature also appears at the end of the text. Light browning to pages, but very good.
London: David Bogue (1885). 120pp. 1st Edition. Hardcover. One of the rarities of 1890s decadent literature, a collection of heavily veiled homosexual verse written by the aesthete perhaps best known for his association with John Gray. This, the author's second volume of poems, was reviewed by Oscar Wilde in the Pall Mall Gazette as a "remarkable little volume," but challenged the author's insistence in making tuberose a three-syllable word, adding: "though he cannot pronounce 'tuberose' aright, at least he can sing of it exquisitely." Annoyed at Wilde's reference to his use of the word as "a potato blossom shaped like a tiny trumpet of ivory," Raffalovich sparred with Wilde in the following days in the Gazette, but they maintained a cordial, if strained, relationship until it became acrimonious in the early 1890s. John Gray's earlier relationship with Wilde, and his subsequent patronage by Raffalovich, added fuel to a difficult relationship that seems not to have been extinguished by Wilde's death. As with his first collection of poems (Cyril and Lionel) this collection appropriates the sentimentalized Victorian 'language of flowers" to portray homosexual love in a disguised, but nonetheless, direct fashion. (See Madden, E., "Say it with Flowers: The Poetry of Marc-André Raffalovich." See also Roden, F. Marc-Andre Raffalovich:. A Russian-French-Jewish-Catholic Homosexual in Oscar Wilde's London and Mckenna, The Secret Life of Oscar Wilde at 45-6.A.; Pick, Svengali's Web- The Alien Enchanter in Modern Culture @ 152-156. A very good copy in the green fabric binding, endpapers lightly browned, Inscribed by the author on the front endpaper, with his address at Albert Hall Mansions where he frequently and lavishly entertained. Young 3180*.
London and New York: David Nutt (1909). The second collection of Uranian verse by the American connosieur, which includes eighty-six poems exalting same-sex love, particularly of the pedarastic variety. Warren wrote several books on similar themes, all of which display his zeal for Greek ideals of Platonic love and comradeship. All of his books were published under variations of this pseudonym and the title apparently alludes to Warren's symbol for Greek "comrade-love." A very good copy in the original publisher’s suede leather binding with gold embossed cover decoration, covers and spine unevenly darkened, rear cover lightly abraded, light discoloration at front and rear hinges. Quite uncommon. Laid into the book is a 6pp. ALS from the author dated 1921 in which he discusses various personal and family matters.
Bruxelles: Imprimerie particulière (1925). The original edition of these three erotic poems appeared under a false date and publisher in 1923 in an edition of 150 copies. This edition is limited to 30 copies (#18) and contains the controversial Sonnet du Trou du Cul. Not listed in Pia, nor do we find any institutional copies. Very good in paper wrappers, lightly browned, a few small stains to prelims.
Paris: Printed for Private Distribution (Contact Editions, 1929). The author of these gay stories was a seventeenth century Japanese writer whose stories about samurai man-youth relations have been widely reprinted. The stories collected here were translated by Ken Sato and are the first English transcriptions, published by Robert McAlmon's Contact Editions. Originally intended to be a two volume book, McAlmon reported to Sylvia Beach that many of the stories "got lost in the mails," but there were still enough (111 printed pages), he reckoned, to provide amusement "without the matter getting wearisome." He had read the Sato manuscript on his trip to America and had found a pleasing naiveté in the stories as well as "situations so completely horrifying to Anglo-Saxondom" that he vowed "they'd better be done."' (Hugh Ford, Published In Paris, Garnstone Press, 1975). Very good in original lightly worn wrappers, small closed tear at head of spine. With the small bookplate of renowned gay collector Herbert Boyce Satcher on front free endpaper. One of 500 copies printed, although rarer in commerce than this would imply.
Detroit: Artists' Workshop Press (1966). 4to. 27pp. A collection of poems by Sanders, Ken Weaver, Tuli Kupferberg and others, printed on multi-colored papers. Includes such Sixties classics as "Group Grope," "The Harness Queen" and assorted other drug-inspired lyrics. The name of the group was apparently inspired by Norman Mailer and the lyrics combine politics with literary and drug allusions.Very good, covers a bit darkened, light wear, unstapled (original staple snot present). Signed by Sanders on title page.
Der Blitz. Eine radikale Zeitung. Wien (1908-1909). One of a number of weekly radical newspapers that flourished in early 20th century Vienna (1908-1924), Der Blitz addressed many social and political issues of the day and paid particular attention to sexual scandals in Austria and Hungary. There were numerous articles on prostitution, homosexuality, lesbianism and related subjects in the weekly tabloid that undoubtedly catered to the bohemianism of the times. Vienna was a hotbed of social activism and there were many newspapers catering to every interest. Included are the following 18 issues (generally 16pp. each): Jahrgang 1: #5, 7, 12, 14, 15, Jahrgang 2: 16, 19 (2 copies), 20, 22, 25, 30, 32, 35, 37, 42, 55, 56. Fair condition, paper browned, edgeworn, some pages are loose, some are torn or chipped.
Privately Printed . The ninth of the eccentric author's book productions and the first under this pseudonym. The work, a Surrealist text set around a Venutian circus, is illustrated with more than one hundred accomplished drawings by Edward Carrick. Very good in 3/4 leather boards and marbled boards, browned at edges.
Sardanapolis: Aux dépens des Amateurs (1775). 80pp. 8vo. The first edition of the Foutromanie, a poëme lubrique in six parts attributed to Senac de Meilhan or to Mercier de Compiegne. A number of versions and editions have appeared since the publication was issued in 1775, but this is the exceedingly rare first appearance. Pia 289. Very good in contemporary leather binding, gold tooling at edges, gilt devices on spine, label, light wear, contemporary inscription on title page. It appears that the book may have been lightly trimmed. Penciled annotations by Brian Reade on endpaper.