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    "April is the cruellest month..."

    T. S. Eliot. The Waste Land. New York: Boni and Liveright, 1922. First edition, limited to 1,000 copies, of which this is number 724. Second issue, with stiff cloth boards, the limitation number measuring 2 mm high, and with the "a" dropped in "mountain" on page 41. 64 pages. Laid in is a small advertisement listing forthcoming and backlist Modern Library titles, presumably issued contemporaneously with The Waste Land. Publisher's stiff black cloth boards with gilt lettering on front board and spine, and salmon-colored dust jacket, lacking the rare inner glassine jacket called for by Gallup. Mild mottling to lower corner of front board. Rear board with some mottling at lower corner, faint cup ring, and a small area of surface loss measuring approximately 1 by 8 mm. Spine lightly faded, with mottling to cloth at foot; gilt on spine a bit dulled. Pages toned around edges. Short closed tear to fore-edge of leaf containing pages 55 and 56, measuring one-half inch. Dust jacket mostly all accounted for, but in pieces, most cleanly split along folds, with only a little over half the spine missing: front panel and front flap still intact; rear panel with piece of spine panel containing "Land" and "T. S. Eliot"; rear flap; and small part of spine panel with partial price printed on it. Altogether a very good copy in the rare dust jacket.

    The modernist classic, considered by many to be the single most important and influential poetic work of the twentieth century. On its publication, an unsigned reviewer in the Times Literary Supplement wrote: "we know of no other modern poet who can more adequately and movingly reveal to us the inextricable tangle of the sordid and the beautiful that make up life." Ezra Pound -- to whom Eliot owed much -- wrote that this "series of poems" was "possibly the finest that the modern movement in English has produced, at any rate as good as anything that has been done since 1900, and which certainly loses nothing by comparison with the best work of Keats, Browning, or Shelley" (Paige, p. 175).

    Though no ownership markings appear in this book, it is from the collection of Margaret Anderson -- publisher of The Little Review, the extremely important arts journal of the 1920s to which Eliot contributed -- coming directly from the family of Dorothy Caruso, Miss Anderson's longtime companion and widow of the great Italian opera singer, Enrico Caruso. From the Letters, Books, and Papers of Margaret C. Anderson and Dorothy Caruso, Collected by Eric Murray.

    Gallup A6a. D. D. Paige, The Letters of Ezra Pound, 1907-1941.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    February, 2012
    8th Wednesday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 1
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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