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    Description

    John Steinbeck Autograph Manuscript Signed "John Steinbeck of Monterey knight." One page, 6.25" x 8", Bruton, Somerset, United Kingdom; circa 1959. A dedication written by Steinbeck for the unfinished works later published as The Acts of King Arthur and His Noble Knights (1976). The poem reads as a description of giving a knighthood to his sister, Mary. It reads, in full:

    "When as a child of nine years, I took my seat with King Arthur's fellowship among the best and bravest knights alive.

    In those days there was a lack of noble-hardy squires to bear shield and sword. To buckle armour and to rescue wounded knights.

    Then it changed that squire-like duties fell to my sister six years old who for gentle courage had no peer.
    It sometimes happens, sadly enough, that faithful service is unrewarded. My sister-squire remains unknighted.

    Wherefore on this day I make amends to the best of my ability. I dub her knight and give her lands.
    And from this hour her name shall be, Sir Mary Steinbeck of the Salinas Valley. God grant her honor without pain.

    John Steinbeck of Monterey
    Knight"

    Accompanying the manuscript is a typed carbon copy of the poem, written in Old English. The wording in the version of dedication that was published differs slightly, but the sentiment remains the same. John Steinbeck had a strong fascination for the legends of King Arthur and wrote his adaptations in the period between 1956 and 1959. For whatever reason, Steinbeck abandoned the project, and it was never revisited until after his death.

    Condition: Flattened folds, with toning at the margins. Some spots of dampstaining and soiling. Mounting residue at the top two corners. The carbon copy also has mail folds, with light edge toning. There is a pencil notation at the lower margin of the page. Overall good.


    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    October, 2019
    27th Sunday
    Internet/Mail Bids: 19
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 940

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