Lettres à l'Amazone.
Avec un frontispice gravé sur bois par P.-Eug. Vibert.Paris: Georges Crès et Cie, les Maitres du Livre, 30 March 1914 Stock Code: 117966
First edition, first printing, copy 112 of 112 copies on papier vergé chartreuse, from an edition of 1,075 copies in total. This copy, with the original chartreuse wrappers bound in, has been handsomely bound by Cochard. Gourmont's "Letters to the Amazon" are the result of the symbolist poet, who had been stricken and disfigured by lupus vulgaris, meeting in 1910, and for four years corresponding intensely and devotedly with, the "Amazon" of Paris, Natalie Clifford Barney (1876-1972), one of the most influential lesbian and feminist writers of the period. Her life inspired Radclyffe Hall's The Well of Loneliness, and her Paris salon at 20 rue Jacob was for 60 years the crucible of Left Bank culture (guests included Colette, Pierre Louÿs, Mata Hari, Auguste Rodin, Ezra Pound, Jean Cocteau, T. S. Eliot, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Rainer Maria Rilke, Rabindranath Tagore, Nancy Cunard, Peggy Guggenheim, Caresse and Harry Crosby, Sylvia Beach, and Isadora Duncan, to name but few). Barney promoted women's writing and formed an Académie des femmes in response to the all-male Académie française, while also supporting and inspiring male writers such as Gourmont. These letters are a classic of French literature, and were much reprinted - this however is the scarce first edition in the alluring chartreuse issue.
Octavo. Finely bound by Cochard in near-contemporary green crushed morocco, spine in compartments with raised bands and title gilt direct, gilt-tooled turn-ins, marbled endpapers, top edge gilt. With the original wrappers bound in.
Frontispiece illustration in two states, one on thick plate, the other on chartreuse paper.
Spine sunned, bound-in wrappers a little marked, excellent condition.
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