SCOTT, ROBERT FACON (1868-1912, 'Scott of the Antarctic)
Lot 421
SCOTT, ROBERT FACON (1868-1912, 'Scott of the Antarctic) AUTOGRAPH MANUSCRIPT HEADED 'ACROSTIC', [Antarctic, 1902]
Sold for £3,750 (US$ 5,727) inc. premium

Lot Details
SCOTT, ROBERT FACON (1868-1912, 'Scott of the Antarctic)
AUTOGRAPH MANUSCRIPT HEADED 'ACROSTIC', 12 lines in one four-line and four two-line stanzas, with the answer to the riddle contained in the verses in a square formation at the foot, stamped 'Shackleton Collection', 1 page, folio, some strengthening, not dated [but Antarctic, June 1902]

All things the sea doth flavour
With its faith pervading Saviour
As, with its briny touch it treats
The sailorman and what he eats...

This is the manuscript, written on the Antarctic, of a contribution by Scott to 'The South Polar Times', edited each month by Shackleton on the Discovery Expedition of 1902-1904, each issue produced in only one typewritten copy. The manuscript would have been preserved by Shackleton (see stamp at foot), who would have received it in his role as editor, making it certain that it was written on the Antarctic. Scott is known to have had the nickname 'Acrostic' on that expedition. Scott made regular contributions to the 'Times' under the sobriquet 'Acrostic', often in verse. He recorded in his account of the voyage: 'It was decided that each number should contain, besides the editorial, a summary of the events and meteorological conditions...certain scientifically instructive articles...and certain others written in a lighter vein. As the scheme developed it was found that other features, such as full-page caricatures, acrostics, and puzzles, could be added.' In the beginning it was decided that contributions need not be signed and were dropped into the editor's box. Scott also noted: 'The anonymity of articles could not long be observed in such a small community...but even the later numbers have contained some articles concerning the authorship of which there has been much erratic guessing.' The present verses appeared in 'The South Polar Times' for June 1902.

RARE: no other poetical manuscripts by Scott have appeared for sale at auction in the last forty years at least. The only other known 'Acrostic' poems are at the Scott Polar Research Institute, Cambridge, MS. 1456. No independent reference to Scott writing verse has been found outside his contributions to 'The South Polar Times.'

PROVENANCE: Stamped at foot 'Shackleton Collection'.

REFERENCES: Robert F. Scott, The Voyage of the 'Discovery', 1953; The South Polar Times, Centenary Edition, 3 volumes, Orsky, John Bonham and Nine, 3 volumes, 2002, this item volume I, Book 3, June 1902, p. 29 (information kindly provided by John Bonham); on-line 'Some Antarctic Nicknames', www.antarctic-circle.org. Other information supplied by Naomi Boneham [sic] of the Scott Polar Research Institute, Cambridge.
Activities
Auction information

This auction is now finished. If you are interested in consigning in future auctions, please contact the specialist department. If you have queries about lots purchased in this auction, please contact customer services.

Buyers' Obligations

ALL BIDDERS MUST AGREE THAT THEY HAVE READ AND UNDERSTOOD BONHAMS' CONDITIONS OF SALE AND AGREE TO BE BOUND BY THEM, AND AGREE TO PAY THE BUYER'S PREMIUM AND ANY OTHER CHARGES MENTIONED IN THE NOTICE TO BIDDERS. THIS AFFECTS THE BIDDERS LEGAL RIGHTS.

If you have any complaints or questions about the Conditions of Sale, please contact your nearest customer services team.

Buyers' Premium and Charges

For all Sales categories excluding Wine, Coins & Medals and Motor Cars and Motorcycles:

Buyer's Premium Rates
25% on the first £50,000 of the Hammer Price
20% from £50,001 to £1,000,000 the Hammer Price
12% from £1,000,001 of the Hammer Price

VAT at the current rate of 20% will be added to the Buyer's Premium and charges excluding Artists Resale Right.

Payment Notices

Payment in advance: by cash, check with banker's card, credit card, bank draft or traveler's cheque.

Payment at collection: by credit or debit card.

Credit card charges: a surcharge of 2% is applicable when using Mastercard, Visa and overseas debit cards.

Shipping Notices

For information and estimates on domestic and international shipping as well as export licenses please contact Bonhams Shipping Department.

Contacts
  1. Simon Roberts
    Specialist - Books, Maps, Manuscripts and Historical Photographs
    Bonhams
    Work
    Montpelier Street
    London, United Kingdom SW7 1HH
    Work +44 20 7393 3828
    FaxFax: +44 20 7393 3879
Similar Items