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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).
Bruxelles: de Nobelle (1912). 189pp. The first biography of the Belgian Romantic painter, whose lurid and often morbid paintings presaged the Symbolist movement. Some of his works were inspired by Edgar Allen Poe and many were quite homoerotic in their portrayal of masculine beauty. Although derided by many (for his personality as well as his art) his works appeared in a number of public and private collections (Somerset Maugham owned several of his works). Very good in lightly worn wrappers, inscribed by the author on endpaper.
Llangollen: Hugh Jones. [ND c. 1918]. 16pp. Lady Eleanor Butler and Sarah Ponsonby eloped to Wales in 1778 where they lived together for over fifty years in "delicious retirement." Although they never left their home, nor parted during their lives, they frequently entertained writers and dignitaries of the day and became well known for their unconventional lifestyle. This is one of the earliest memoirs of the women, written by a local resident and apparently amended after his death. The memoir makes note of their masculine attire and "cropped heads, which were rough, bushy, and white as snow." A very good copy of an uncommon item, light cover wear to illustrated wrappers.
Firenze: Piero Betti (1960). 223pp. In June 1960, in Florence, Giorgio Quintini published what was, for the time, a scandalous novel. The cover and the title give a clear idea of the content: love and sentimental triangles in a roman à clef with many recognizable portraits from contemporary Florentine, Umbrian and Roman life.
Paris: Éditions de la Galerie Simon [Kahnweiler](1921). 28pp. The precocious writer's first work, which was published when he was only 18 years old. Les Pélican, one of Kahnweiler's most elegant publications, is a two-act satirical play accompanied by Laurens' whimsical, cubist illustrations which capture the absurdist tone of the play. The play was performed for the first time on May 24, 1921 at the Théâtre Michel in Paris to much acclaim. Radiguet, a true enfant terrible, was a protege of Jean Cocteau until his untimely death in 1923 at the age of 19. Very good in custom full blue morocco binding, marbled end papers, with original paper cover mounted at rear. Number 80 of 100 printed copies on Holland laid paper, signed by Radiguet and Laurens. Includes 7 original engravings (one of the tipped in front cover and 2 full page) by the French sculptor and illustrator Henri Laurens (1885-1954).
Paris: Maloine(1905) 363pp. Raffalovich's landmark study of homosexuality which created a furor in the medical establishment when it appeared. Raffalovich wrote the book to condemn what he considered the "fatuous" French medical opinion about sexual inversion, which concluded that male "inverts" were effeminate degenerates. The idea was so preposterous to Raffalovich that he coined a new term, "unisexuality," for sexual attraction between men. An early edition of a very important treatise on homosexuality, the first edition of which appeared in 1896. Very good in original wrappers, light foxing to covers and occasional spotting, small signature on cover. The Maloine publisher's name has been pasted over on title page, as in most copies.
[Pôrto: Editora Livraria Progredior] 1937 [i.e. 1938]. 188pp. The author was among the most widely respected Portuguese writers of his generation and regarded Botto with particularly high esteem as the greatest of modernist writers. He writes movingly of Botto's struggle over the controversy with his Cancoes and his personal life. Good in original wrappers, spine sunned with slight loss. Uncommon.
Paris: E. Ganeau (1723). 78pp. 4to. An uncommon publication on the cult of Hadrian’s beloved Antinous. Heraldic bookplate of Louis Bauffremont (1685-1755), Knight of the Golden Fleece (Spain) “God ayde the first Christian” and “More joy for mourning”. Very good in contemporary vellum boards, slight separation at head of spine, usual wear at edges.Rare.
Portland, Maine: Thomas B. Mosher (1906). Wilde contributed the foreword to this eccentrically produced book of poetry, which he arranged the publication for while in America. Rodd and Wilde had been close companions for some time, but this book prompted their estrangement. Very god in original boards, original paper jacket present, with light wear. Penciled ownership signature of Brian Reade, dated 1933.
London: D. Bogue: [Chiswick Press] (1881). The British peer's first collection of verse, preceding Rose Leaf and Apple Leaf for which Oscar Wilde provided an introduction. Rodd and Wilde eventually parted ways after Wilde courted scandal and Rodd went on to a prominent career in the Foreign Service. The poem "If any one Return" has a particularly homoerotic caste. By the high cliff's edge where the wild weeds twine, And he would not speak or move, But his eyes would gaze from his soul to mine, My eyes that would answer without one sign, And that were enough for love. Good in parchment wrappers with ownership inscription of Henry Dunkin (alumnus with Rodd of Haileybury School) dated 1881. Wrappers chipped with loss at edges, penciled notes of Brian Reade on endpaper.
Iowa City: Typographic Library (1975) 4to. Soft cover. The second edition of this facsimile letter, limited to only 50 copies. Inscribed by Donald Weeks, the owner of the original letter, to Anthony Reid in the year of publication. Not in Woolf. One sheet folded and laid into plain blue card wrappers. The five illustrations by Rolfe have been redrawn and reduced. A fine copy.
Paris, La Centaine (1926). These 222 letters from Remy de Gourmont addressed to Natalie Clifford Barney during the years 1910 to 1915, serve, as the recipient wrote, both of "preface, comment and conclusion to Letters to the Amazon", published in 1914. Illustrated with 52 original lithographs by Rouveyre. One of 100 special copies on Japon, this example #3. Warmly inscribed by the illustrator, and signed by Edouard Champion and Natalie Barney on title page. Bound in 1/2 morocco, front panel very weak, light wear to boards, some light foxing on tissue guards.
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.