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Waugh in Abyssinia.
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WAUGH, Evelyn.

Waugh in Abyssinia.

Published: London: Longmans, Green and Co., 1936

Stock code: 103162

Price: £7,500

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First edition, first impression. Presentation copy from the author, inscribed on the front free endpaper: “Tony from Evelyn”. With the armorial bookplate of Anthony Powell. An exceptional association copy, linking two of the great novelists of the 20th-century. “Although two years behind him at Oxford, Powell had seen just enough of Waugh to recognise that he was bound to make his mark in the world somehow. They met again in 1927… [and] Powell warmed to Waugh, whose self confidence had not been dented by the many setbacks he had experienced since leaving Oxford” (Michael Barber, Anthony Powell: a Life). Between 1926 and 1937 Powell worked at Duckworth and it was he who introduced Waugh to that publishing house, with the result that they published Waugh’s first book, a biography of Dante Gabriel Rossetti (1928). “On 29 July [1936] Evelyn set off on his visit to Abyssinia. He travelled by train to Rome, intending to sail on the ‘Leonardo da Vinci’ from Naples. He was seen off at Victoria Station by Tom Burns who had made this journey possible by persuading Longmans Green to agree to an advance which, with a large advance from Chapman and Hall on his forthcoming novel, covered most of the expenses… before his departure Tom Burns had decided on the title of the book… [and] wanted something crisp and intriguing so… insisted on Waugh in Abyssinia and forced his decision on Evelyn” (Christopher Sykes, a Biography, 1975, p. 165).

Octavo. Original red cloth, gilt lettered spine, top edge red. Spine slightly rolled and toned. An excellent copy.

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