8vo, pp. 302, , with printed errata slip at the end; title-page printed in red and black; old library stamps and shelfmarks (cancelled) to title-page and a few internal leaves, else a good copy in the original pale cloth, blocked in red and yellow, trace of label removed from head.
US $2391 €2039
Added to your basket:
Poety frantsuzskogo vozrozhdeniia, antologiia [Poets of the French Renaissance, an anthology].
First edition of a rare anthology of translations from Villon, Marot, Ronsard, Du Bellay, and others. Two of the Villon translations are attributed in the index to Mandelshtam, but are in fact by Nikolai Stepanovich Gumilev (1886-1921), husband of Anna Akhmatova, who had been arrested and executed for his alleged involvement in the Tagantsev conspiracy.
Since the beginning of the Great Purge in 1937, Mandelshtam himself had been under systematic assault from the authorities. This volume was published in January 1938; in May Mandelshtam was arrested, in August he was sentenced to five years’ labour, and by the end of December he was dead. The motivations for naming Mandelshtam in the roster of translators here are still the subject of debate – the potential risk to the editor and publisher was great. But then so was the very inclusion of the work of a banned author; and apart from Gumilev’s translations there were those by the recently arrested Ivan Lukhachev (1902-1972), whose renditions of verses by Du Bellay, Desportes and d’Aubigny are left anonymous.
Perhaps there is a clue to motives if we recall that Mandelshtam had published an essay ‘François Villon’ in 1910 in which he presented the artist as victim of the state. If Mandelshtam was not complicit in the deception, which is itself possible, his name must certainly be a coded attack on the apparatus of oppression.
OCLC shows copies at Yale and New York Public Library only.
You may also be interested in...
ALBERTI, Rafael, and Carlos RODRIGUEZ-PINTOS.
Dos Oraciones a la Virgen.
First edition, rare, one of 325 copies privately printed by Rodriguez-Pintos (ours is unnumbered). The two poems comprise ‘Nuestra Señora de la Cinta’ by the Uruguayan poet Carlos Rodriguez-Pintos (1895-1985), with an illustration by Alberti; and ‘Nuestra Señora de la Buena Leche’ by Alberti, with an illustration by Rodriguez -Pintos.
WITH THE MUSIC FOR THE GYPSY CHORUS IN ACT II TOLSTOY, Lev Nikolaevich.
Zhivoi trup. Drama v 6 deistviiakh i 12 kartinakh [A Living Corpse. A drama in 6 acts and 12 scenes].
One of the earliest printings of Tolstoy’s Living Corpse, one of a number of editions in 1911, the year it was first staged, posthumously, at the Moscow Arts Theatre.