Thursday, February 16, 2006

Lovecraftiana: Henry Kuttner

Robert Bloch introduced Kuttner and Lovecraft via correspondence. In 1990, Joshi and Schultz brought forth the extant texts of their correspondence. [1]

Their correspondence lasted from Feb. 10, 1936 {*} to Feb. 8, 1937. In the first preserved letter of Feb. 16, 1936, Lovecraft graciously and warmly accepts Kuttner's "black book" to the Mythos.

"Clark Ashton Smith and I frequently use each other's hellish books & devil gods - - giving Tsathoggua & Yog-Sothoth a change of environment, as it were! Some time I'll quote darkly from your "Book of Iod" {**} - - which I presume either antedates the human race like the Eltdown shards and thr Pnakotic Manuscripts, or repeats the most hellish secrets learnt by man in the fashion of the Book of Eibon, De Vermis Mysteriis, the Comte d'Erlette's {***} Cultes de Goules, von Junzt's Unausspechlichen Kulten, or the dreaded & abhorred Al Azif or Necronomicon of the mad Arab Abdul Alhazred."

The book is a treasure trove of Mythos lore and there are pen sketches of bits of Salem by HPL and history lessons from Druids, to Salem, to Roman Britain. So stay tuned in the months to come. [2]

1 H. P. Lovecraft: Letters to Henry Kuttner, Necronomicon Press, 1990.
* The Feb, 10, 1936 letter not extant.
** Lovecraft never lived long enough to publicly acknowledge the Book of Iod.
*** August Derleth.
2 After John 21.25 ... if they should be written every one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that should be written. Amen.

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