Autograph Note Signed (partial).

STANLEY, Arthur P. (1815-81).

From Main Street Fine Books & Mss, ABAA (Galena, IL, U.S.A.)

AbeBooks Seller Since March 11, 1998

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"Dean Stanley" was one of the leading (and most prolific) liberal Church of England theologians on 19th century England, and served as Dean of Westminster from 1864 to 1881. Partial ANS, 1p, 4½" X 3½", n.p., n.y. Very good. Faintest of age toning; two faint vertical folds. Clipped portion of letter on pale blue stock. Below a few illegible works is a large, bold (wild educated guess) "Yours truly" and "A.P. Stanley," followed by a dozen or so words on three lines that perhaps partially read: "The remuneration is 2£ a / week, for copying &c, 10" after which it's anyone's guess. Verso also bears 15 or so large words in Stanley's notorious hand, some of which may read: "copy for the / place of." and "I can pay [?] / to hear from you" -- or not. Incredibly, this outlandishly illegible fragment is accompanied by a clipped late 19th century newspaper tidbit of the period, 2 3/4" X 3¼", that describes this very document and the original recipient's experience in trying to transcribe it! Reads in full: "A correspondent of The Manchester Examiner says that he once received from Dean Stanley the most inscrutable epistle he ever beheld. It was written upon poor blue paper and in two kinds of ink, the latter portion in black ink and the former in ink about the color of brown vinegar. The writing had a thin, timid, scratchy look, and suggested the thought that it had been written with an old pen with only one prong, or with the point of an old stocking-needle. There were no distinct letters as such, but a series of nervous pecks at the paper with something smeared with ink. 'I tried over and over again for several days,' says the correspondent, 'to decipher the missive, but to no purpose. I procured a magnifying glass, and was simply dismayed at the result. I held it up to a strong gas-light, and tried to read the front through the back and the back through the front. I tried to read it perpendicularly, horizontally, and from each of the four corners diagonally, and at last flung myself full length up[on the hearthrug, and sought a friendly revelation from the glow of the fire, but in vain. As a last resource I took it to a clever schoolmaster, who, after looking carefully over it from beginning to end, somewhat discouraged me by asking me who it was from and what it was about. He labored at it more or less for five weeks, and then gravely assured me that the man who could read such writing was not yet born.'" Describes this letter to a "T" and presumably written about this same example. An outrageously illegible example of this famously illegible script. Bookseller Inventory # 40753

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Autograph Note Signed (partial).

Signed: Signed by Author(s)

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Main Street Fine Books & Manuscripts has been buying and selling quality books, autographs and ephemera since 1991. We specialize in general antiquarian, first editions, signed books and autographs and documents. We are members of the Antiquarian Booksellers' Association of America (ABAA), Midwest Antiquarian Booksellers Association (MWABA), Universal Autograph Collectors Club (UACC) and The Manuscript Society.

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Main Street Fine Books & Manuscripts accepts VISA, MasterCard and Discover cards. Checks are welcome. Institutions will be accommodated as their procedures require. Shipping is additional and will be quoted at the time an order is placed. Illinois residents will be charged 8.25% sales tax. Every effort has been made to describe each book and any defects accurately. If an item proves unsatisfactory for any reason, it may be returned pursuant to ABEBooks' policy. We would appreciate a courtesy cal...

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