DescriptionAubrey Beardsley Autograph Letter Signed. One page, 4.5" x 3.5", with transmittal envelope postmarked September 30, 1897, Paris. In full: "My Dear LS./ The Wagner (a sumptuous vol[ume]) has arrived. Many thanks/ Yours a". The transmittal envelope is addressed with beautiful penmanship to "Leonard Smithers Esq/ 4 Royal Arcade/ Old Bond Street/ London/ W/ Angleterre". Beardsley (1872-1898), an English Decadent movement illustrator and writer, had been in Paris for two weeks when he wrote this letter to his close associate Leonard Smithers, a London publisher also associated with the Decadent movement. The two wrote many letters to one another and, together with writer Arthur Symons, began the Savoy, a magazine published in 1896 that dealt with anti-Victorian art and literature. The magazine did not last long; only eight issues were published.
Beardsley was an admirer of the writings and music of German composer Richard Wagner. During Beardsley's most creative years from 1892 through 1896, he yielded over twenty Wagnerian-related drawings. Even though he suffered from chronic tuberculosis-the cause of his death at age twenty-five-Beardsley still managed to attend many Wagner operas. At the top of this letter is written "Foyot" (while in Paris, Beardsley stayed in Foyot's Hotel in the Luxemburg Quarter).The short letter is written on beige cardstock. Envelope and card have three small areas of tape discoloration. Fine.
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