MILNE, ALAN ALEXANDER. 1882-1956.
Autograph Manuscript Signed 3 times ("A.A. Milne"), entitled "Peace with Honour: An Enquiry into the War Convention," approximately 140 pp, 4to, Cotchford Farm, Hartfield, Sussex, 1934, with a note at front of first notebook dated May 1942: "This is the original MS of Peace with Honour, published in 1934, and no copy of it has been made since. A.A. Milne," author's note on final leaf signed with initials ("A.A.M"), extensively revised and corrected throughout, 2 volumes, original marbled board notebooks, last chapters of first notebook and a few other leaves sprung.
Provenance: Phillips, October 19, 1989, lot 143.
WITH: Autograph Manuscript, being the first draft of the above, approximately 150 pp, 4to, 1934, Inscribed on first leaf "For Athene / since she asked for it / and I can refuse her nothing. / Blue," chapter 1 (single leaf) removed and loosely inserted to above, original marbled board notebook, with an ALS of W. Graham Robertson, 3 pp, to Athene [Seyler] loosely inserted.
ORIGINAL AUTOGRAPH MANUSCRIPT OF MILNE'S ANTI-WAR POLEMIC, INCLUDING FIRST AND FINAL DRAFTS. Milne wrote this impassioned call to pacifism and diplomacy amidst increasing fears of an outbreak of war following Germany's withdrawal from the World Disarmament Conference in October of 1933. "...If we are on the eve of another Armageddon, then we are on the eve of the destruction of the world. That is absolutely certain. And, on the eve of the destruction of the world, the Great Statesmen of the world (God help the world) still yammer sentimental schoolboy rubbish about dignity and honour and prestige, and the Greatest Statesman of Them All, instead of editing The Boys Own Paper, proposes to defend 'the greatness of the Italian people' with 'the song of our machine-guns'...."
Milne considered this among his most important works, though he would modify his stance in his 1940 pamphlet War with Honour: "If anybody reads Peace with Honour now, he must read it with that one word 'HITLER' scrawled across every page."
The first draft is contained in a single notebook, with profuse insertions and corrections throughout. Based on the inserted ALS from English painter and author W. Graham Roberterson, the inscription at the front is to the English actress Athene Seyler (1889-1990), who played Eustasia in a 1922 London production of Milne's stage comedy The Dover Road. The final draft is written more legibly across two notebooks, and contains numerous revisions from the earlier draft.