Plays and Controversies. W. B. Yeats, Singer John Sargent, Edmund Dulac, Frontispiece, Illustrations to "At the Hawk's Well"
Plays and Controversies
Plays and Controversies
Plays and Controversies

Plays and Controversies

New York: The Macmillan Company, 1924. Limited Edition. Hardcover. No. 42 of 250 copies, octavo size, 485 pp., signed by Yeats, with original slipcase. Near fine. Item #CNIK14

William Butler Yeats (1865-1939) is acknowledged by many as "supreme among modern Irish poets". He was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1923 (the first Irish to be so recognized), at which time he was "one of Dublin's great established figures, both in his own right and as the representative of the cultural renaissance which...had set in motion the Irish revolution and war of independence." Throughout his life, and throughout his poetry - which is still read and loved today - Yeats is recognized as supremely Irish, with his life and poetry reflective of his Irish identity.

This work, "Plays and Controversies", opens with a lengthy essay by Yeats on the "Irish Dramatic Movement". This is followed by "The Countess Cathleen", "The Land of Heart's Desire", and "Four Plays for Dancers", with prefaces and notes; "Note and Music for 'At the Hawk's Well' [are] by Edmund Dulac" and "Note and Music for 'The Dreaming of the Bones' [are] by Walter Morse Rummel" (n.b., per Wade).

Serving as frontispiece is a reproduction of a charcoal drawing by John Singer Sargent of Yeats as a young man, and the seven illustrations to "At the Hawk's Well" are by Edmund Dulac.

___DESCRIPTION: Teal cloth shelfback with brown laid paper boards, mounted paper label with black lettering and decorative border inset onto the front board, similar label on the spine, top edge rough-cut, fore- and bottom edges uncut, Yeats' signature on the limitation page tipped in before the half-title, this no. 42 of 250 copies, August publication date on the copyright page; octavo size (8" by 5.5"), pagination: [limitation statement] [i-iv] [v-ix] [x, blank] [1-2] 3-474. In the original slipcase of cardboard covered with smooth white paper, paper label in style similar to that on the front board on one side, limitation no. 42 hand-written, with a small notation in pencil in the middle of the label "500[?]" - presumably a vintage price.

___CONDITION: Near fine, with clean boards, perfectly straight corners without rubbing, a strong, square text block with solid hinges, the interior is clean and bright, and entirely free of prior owner markings; some miniscule rubbing to the head and tail of the spine,light dustiness to the text block edges, a few old cello marks on the free endpapers from a former prior owner dust jacket, the gutter between pp. 6 and 7 cracked but the binding still sturdy, and a small (approx. one-half inch) closed tear in the bottom margin of the leaf for pp. 217-218; even with its few minor faults, still a near fine copy. The slipcase very good, entire, with light overall soiling to the white paper, but still sturdy and strong.

___CITATION: Wade, listed with the US trade edition in no. 140 (trade edition published on September 16, 1924; this limited edition published on the same day).

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Price: $2,000.00