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    Description

    Thomas Hardy Autograph Letter Signed "Thomas Hardy." Two pages, 4.25" x 6.75", Dorchester; June 26, 1900. Addressed to a Miss Pendleton in London, Hardy discusses the adaptation of his novel Tess of the d'Urbervilles into an opera. The letter reads in full:

    "I understand from your letter that Mr. Schenck and yourself contemplate the production of an opera based on 'Tess of the D'Urbervilles'; that you adapt the words of the novel for this work, and he composes the music. I should have no objection to this being done, though I can take no responsibility in the matter. It would probably be necessary that you work straight from the novel, and not from any existing dramatization - for instance Mr. Fiske's: for though I imagine an opera would not injure a play on the same subject, the dramatizer might not approve of his work being used as a basis for your libretto." The letter is framed in a dual-window custom frame so that both sides may be visible. Framed along with the original transmittal cover and an engraving of a Thomas Hardy medallion to measure 16.75" x 13.5" overall.

    Americans Charlotte Pendleton and Elliot Schenck proposed an adaptation of Tess of the d'Urbervilles in early 1900, and Hardy even offered to waive the royalties for the first year of production. However, due to there being no record of the opera's performance, it is unknown whether the project was completed or not. Tess would later be adapted into an Italian opera by Frederic d'Erlanger in 1906. The initial run was halted due to the eruption of Mount Vesuvius, but Hardy attended the premiere when it came to London three years later.

    Condition: Flattened mail fold with light edge toning. Usual wear and soiling to the envelope.


    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    October, 2019
    26th Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 1
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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