Friday, August 15, 2008

Samuel Loveman Letter

AUTOGRAPH LETTER SIGNED (ALS) to "Aonian Endymion" [Samuel Loveman] on both sides of letter-size sheet, dated "Woden's-Day" n.y. [1926?], signed "Theobaldus Senex.". // "A pleasant, relaxed letter about minor matters and mutual acquaintances, written in Lovecraft's sardonically inflated style, before the Depression -- and the lessons learned by revising other people's work -- beat leanness and sincerity into his style. // Among the standard Lovecraftian tropes found here (Anglophilia, praising the sights of New England, nostalgia for the Eighteenth century) he encourages Loveman in his new-found employment as a cataloger for rare book dealers Dauber & Pine in New York (thus dating this letter sometime after September 1925); Loveman, a poet of no small ability, continued in this day-job and went on to own and run the Bodley Bookshop in New York for 30 years. Lovecraft wonders how he'd fare in a similar job. 'I envy you - & sincerely wish I had the bibliophilic erudition to land one of those similar posts ...' But one suspects that his narrow, obsessive tastes and apathy about books as objects would have have unsuited him for such a job. // Loveman defended Lovecraft against charges of anti-Semitism by contrasting the pose he struck in his letters with the person 'as he actually was -- a charming companion, a wonderful human being, and a loyal friend.' Nevertheless, Loveman is said to have destroyed all, or almost all, his letters from HPL, and they are consequently very scarce today." -- Robert Eldridge. Faint fold creases, matching 52 mm tears at top and bottom edges (incurred when sheet was folded), 7-mm-square nick at bottom edge (not affecting text), otherwise very good to near fine.
Price: $4,000.00

1 comment:

Magister said...

Hey, this is VERY interesting! This letter does not appear in the Necronomicon Press book Letters to Samuel Loveman & Vincent Starrett!!

I never believed the claim that Loveman destroyed Lovecraft's letters to him -- he knew that they were worth serious money even then.



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