a gift from j. m. barrie
YEATS, W.B. The Trembling of the Veil. London: Privately Printed for Subscribers only by T. Werner Laurie, Ltd., 1922.
8vo., original cream parchment-backed baby blue boards with paper spine label; matching endpapers; with frontis portrait taken from a picture by Charles Shannon; edges untrimmed; pp. [vi], v-vii, [iii], 3-247, [i]; toning to edges and spine, with some light pushing and creasing to foot and one splash mark to spine; internally near-fine; lacking the dust wrapper, else a lovely copy. Provenance: Ex Libris of Caroline Myfanwy Tonge Elmes to front paste-down; two previous ownership inscriptions to half-title, one an inscription from J. M. Barrie to Miss Wilkinson "with kindest regards from J. M. Barrie, Christmas 1922.
Limited edition, this no. 938 of 1000 numbered copies signed by the author.
Yeats was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1923, just a year after this autobiography was published. He was the first Irishman to do so, but was swiftly followed by George Bernard Shaw in 1925, and later Samuel Beckett (1969), and Seamus Heaney (1995). The Trembling of the Veil was the second in his series of memoirs which also comprised Reveries over Childhood and Youth, The Irish Dramatic Movement, The Bounty of Sweden, Estrangement, The Death of Synge and Dramatis Personae.
“Looking back from 1922, [Yeats] titled his autobiographical account of the decade of the 1890s The Trembling of the Veil. He recalled that Mallarme has said that ‘his epoch was troubled by the trembling of the veil of the Temple,’ and that ‘as those words were still true, during the years of my life described in this book,’ he had named it accordingly” (The Cambridge Companion to W.B. Yeats).
A bright copy, with interesting provenance.