CONRAD (JOSEPH) Working typescript, with extensive autograph revisions throughout, of Conrad's tale of hearsay, 'Prince Roman', [1911]
Lot 182
CONRAD (JOSEPH)
Working typescript, with extensive autograph revisions throughout, of Conrad's tale of hearsay, 'Prince Roman', [1911]
Sold for £6,875 (US$ 11,019) inc. premium

Lot Details
The Property of a Collector
CONRAD (JOSEPH)
Working typescript, with extensive autograph revisions throughout, of Conrad's tale of hearsay, 'Prince Roman', opening: "Events which happened seventy years ago are perhaps rather too far off to be dragged aptly into a mere conversation. Of course the year 1831 is for us an historical date, one of these fatal years when in the presence of the world's passive indignation and eloquent sympathies we had once more to murmur 'Vae Victis' and count the cost in sorrow. Not that we were ever very good at calculating, either, in prosperity or in adversity. That's a lesson we could never learn, to the great exasperation of our enemies who have bestowed upon us the epithet of Incorrigible....'/ The speaker was of Polish nationality, that nationality not so much alive as surviving, which persists in thinking, breathing, speaking, hoping, and suffering in its grave, railed in by a million of bayonets and triple-sealed with the seals of three great empires..."; subscribed on the last page with Conrad's usual flourish "End", signed "Joseph Conrad" and marked as being "8-9 thousand words"; with a copy of the off-print (see below), blue morocco gilt, green marbled endpapers, by The French Binders, Garden City, NY, 4to, [1911]

Footnotes

  • 'RAILED IN BY A MILLION OF BAYONETS AND TRIPLE-SEALED WITH THE SEALS OF THREE GREAT EMPIRES' – CONRAD'S TALE OF THE POLISH PATRIOT, Prince Roman Sanguszko. 'Prince Roman', much of which derives from Conrad's reminiscences of his early days in Poland, was first published in October 1911 in The Oxford and Cambridge Review and was collected in Tales of Hearsay (1925). Our typescript would have been prepared from Conrad's first manuscript draft (see for example the leaf from such a draft of The End of the Tether in the present sale), which he would re-draft, as here, and then send off to the printer. Set into the volume is the Richard Clay offprint of 1920, ostensibly 'printed for the author' but in fact commissioned by the forger T.J. Wise as part of a series of Conrad pamphlets, with which he managed to associate their author. Ours is in the original yellow-beige wrappers and marked as copy number 20 of 25 copies, a typed note indicating that the purchaser acquired this copy for 15 guineas (Cagle, A47). Included in the lot is a published French translation of the book, Un héros polonais de Conrad. Le Prince Roman. Traduit... par G. Jean-Aubry, inscribed to George Keating by the translator, Maestricht, 1933).
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