Two ink portraits by the aesthete of his friend and contemporary Edward Sackville-West. The portraits are on a sheet of Waldorf Hotel stationary (4.5" x 7") and each bears assorted notations in Tennant's hand: "Eddie- the portrait of a spiritual attitude" and "Cycle of the Ring- your profile shows your soul of a mystic....your marveous eye...." Sackville-West and Tennant were both sensitive gay men in the circle of The Bright Young Things in the 1920s and Sackville- West is perhaps known as a music critic.
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Volume II. London: Printed for E. Curll in Fleet Street (1719). Hardcover. 58pp. A record of the famous Castlehaven sodomy trial in 1631, among a number of similar publications issued by this publisher to exploit the case for his own commercial purposes and which fed on the “sodomite-hunting” that was rampant during the period. The 2nd Earl of Castlehaven was convicted of abetting the rape of his wife and of committing sodomy with his male servants and the trial was a spectacular sex scandal, resulting in the execution of Castlehaven and his servants. Included with this publication is another sensational trial from 1699 involving adultery and divorce of Henry Duke of Norfolk. Contemporary calf boards, front panel missing, front endpaper a bit browned and worn. Rare.
Two autograph letters from the acclaimed painter to his longtime friend and confidant, Charles Kains-Jackson, both dated 1926. Tuke was best known for his paintings of maritime subjects, particularly of nude young men at the beach. The first is dated 11 February 1926, toward the end of Tuke's nine-week stay in Jamaica and was written on the letterhead of the Waterloo Hotel on Black River. Tuke writes: " I have done quite a lot of sketches & studies & found some good subjects, if one was ever to come back here for any length of time." The second letter was dated at Hampstead, England on 4 May 1926, shortly after his return, discussing his plans to visit the artist colony at Kardomah, Wales with friends: "Masson, Colin, and Towsey are all staying this week-end with Sidney Lomer!" Tuke's patron Sydney Lomer once famously asked Tuke to define the genitals more clearly in one of his paintings. "Colin' was possibly Colin Goodwyn, a model for his 1900 painting 'The Coming of Day'; 'Masson' was in all probability the artist's close friend Charles Masson Fox (1866-1935); and the final guest would be the photographer Stanley Towsey. Tuke also writes "If you come here I can show you a number of my sketches and you can inspect the new room I have added to the house." Signed as H .S. Tuke, each 2 pages, the first 8 1/2x5 1/2 inches, 21 1/2x14 cm, and the other a bit smaller; moderate wear and soiling to the first letter and minimal wear to the second.
Paris: Méricant (1902). A decadent erotic novel with androgynous characters, illustrated with 25 black and white illustrations by Maurice Neumont. The author of more than forty books, many on similar themes, she was widely respected in fin de siecle literary circles. A very good copy in illustrated lightly worn wrappers, slight roll to spine.
Berlin-Neurahnsdorf A. Brand . 220pp. The first true anthology of homosexual writing, produced by the artist and writer and initiated in response to Oscar Wilde's imprisonment. The writers represented include the early Greeks and include Goethe, Verlaine, Adolf Brand (with whom he collaborated on the long-running gay journal, Der Eigene) and numerous others. Von Kupffer's introduction to the book argues that homosexuality is a fundamental part of social life and disparages the idea of a "third sex" advocated by Hirschfeld and others as destructive. The volume was banned by authorities in 1903 and the book has become a great rarity and is an important milestone in gay history and one of the cornerstones of gay literature. The arguments articulated in the book remain as culturally significant as they were in his own day. The volume precedes the other major anthologies in the field, Men and Boys: An Anthology (1924) and Edward Carpenter's Iolaus (who was inspired to collect his material after reading this book). A very good copy in lightly worn contemporary boards, the uncommon wrappers are present and bear the signature of the Romantic writer Peter Hille. The book was published in 1900 by the gay rights crusader Adolf Brand and the sheets were later conveyed to Max Spohr, who re-issued the book under his own imprint. Quite rare. $2000.
Albert Wainwright (1898-1943) was born in Castleford and studied at Leeds School of Art, where he was friends with fellow student, Henry Moore. He was a prolific artist and illustrator, primarily in a post-Beardsley and Viennese secessionist manner. He found early success with a one-man show in Leeds, at the age of 22, followed by a show at the Goupil Gallery in London. He traveled extensively to Germany and Austria, where these images were created. One verso is another gouache drawing: “Gentleman in traditional costume, Salzburg.” Both images are ink and wash drawings, unframed, unsigned, (25cm x 18cm).
Baltimore: Contemporary Poetry (1944). 55pp. A largely overlooked collection of poetry, much of it highly homoerotic. Wallis is primarily remembered for his classical translations, but many of the poems in this collection are powerful expressions of hidden desires and remorse at lost love. The author died relatively young after a fatal fall from an open window. Do we make war because we fear to vex the manliness of men with death by sex? Near fine in jacket, laid into the book is a 1 page pencilled note from the author.
Paris: Les Éditions Crès (1922). An uncommon book on the famous costume balls of Paris, with illustrations by the author. Warnod descibes in detail many of the fin de siècle balls and those of the post-War period with amusing vignettes. This edition (as opposed to the trade edition of the book) was available to subscribers only and contains four controversial sections on "Les Bals d'Invertis", "Le Dernier Grand Écart", "Grandeur et Décadence de la Danse du Ventre a Paris" and Les Filles de Maisons Closesau Bal Public". This edition also contains four addiitional images illustrating these sections laid into the text (see illustration). Limited to 200 numbered copies, very good in original illustrated wrappers, pages uncut.
Boston: Merrymount Press (1900). Perhaps the best of Warren's writings, a short story based (arguably) on a similar story by Oscar Wilde. Warren is known for his sale of classical antiquities and the Lewes House brotherhood of aesthetes, as well as his several books of Uranian poetry. One of 300 numbered copies printed by D.B. Updike and illustrated by Arthur Gaskin, covers and spine lightly borwned, light scratch to cover. Uncommon.
Edinburgh: Tragara Press (1984). One of a series of books by Weeks on Corvo published at the Tragara Press. This copy is one of 25 special copies for the author. Inscribed by Weeks to Brian Reade on endpaper. Laid in is a 2pp ALS to Reade detailing the publication history of the book. Fien in salmon wrappers.
London (Tate Gallery). Reproduction of the Expedition of Rare Meats mural at the Tate, with an explanation. The murals are reproduced in color on a folding pamphlet, printed on both sides. Very good. Reproduction of the Expedition of Rare Meats mural at the Tate, with an explanation. The murals are reproduced in color on a folding pamphlet, printed on both sides. Very good.
Privately Printed: New York (1955). 24pp. This gay story was issued in a quite small ediiton of 117 copies, acompanied by an original signed serigraph by Paul Cadmus. The story, set in Italy was published by Windham's longtime lover, Sandy Campbell, in one of a series of handsome letterpress productions. The book is a quite beautifully produced, oblong in shape, illustrated black paper over boards, black paper jacket. Good condition, some loss to spine, boards a bit marked, the black paper dust jacket does not bear the printed title as is called for, but is in near fine condition with glassine wrappers. Signed and numbered by the author (# 32 of 100 copies). A quite rare book as many were destroyed by water damage (interview with the author). Young 4204*.
Taunton: Woodley Williams & Dunsford (1921). 8vo. 62pp. The only published work of the Uranian poet, whose ideal of comradely love parallels that of Edward Carpenter, perhaps with a more passionate dimension. His poems to boyhood love attracted the attention of Edward Slocum, who included examples in his anthology Men & Boys several years later. Very good in red fabric boards, spine sunned, a bit of foxing to foredge. Rare.
Paris: Alphonse Lemerre [ca. 1912] 5th ed. One of two novels written by the lesbian heiress and one of her last publications. The novel begins in Port Saïd and follows the wanderings of Prince Charles-Auguste de Lindenfels throughout the Far East with a shifting ensemble of wealthy expatriates. Very good in 1/4 leather and marbled boards, original wrappers not present. Warmly inscribed by the author in her usual purple ink on endpaper. Uncommon.