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Chamber Music

JOYCE, James (1882-1941)

Published by The Cornhill Company, Boston, 1918
Condition: Fine Hardcover
From Fine Editions Ltd (New York, NY, U.S.A.)

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First Unauthorized American Edition of Joyce's first regularly published work, with print run estimated at 1000 copies. Small, slim 8vo: 20 unnumbered leaves, with 36 numbered Elizabethan-like poems chronicling the growth of a young poet's love for a golden-haired woman (the collection originally comprised 34 love poems, but "All day I hear the noise of waters" and "I hear an army charging upon the land," which Yeats described as a "technical and emotional masterpiece," were added before publication). Publisher's green cloth, upper cover lettered in gilt, fore- and bottom edges untrimmed, wove end papers (some copies with laid end papers, no known priority. Without the fragile transparent tissue wrapper. An exemplary example virtually pristine, covers firmly attached, binding tight, gilt stamping sharp (Slocum & Cahoon note variations in stamping). Slocum & Cahoon A5. Originally published in 1907, in London. The first authorized American edition, published in New York by B. W. Huebsch, appeared three months after this Cornhill issue. "Although it is widely reported that the title refers to the sound of urine tinkling in a chamber pot, this is a later Joycean embellishment, lending an earthiness to a title first suggested by his brother Stanislaus and which Joyce (by the time of publication) had come to dislike . . . In Ulysses, Leopold Bloom reflects, 'Chamber music. Could make a pun on that.' In fact, the poetry of Chamber Music is not in the least bawdy, nor reminiscent of the sound of tinkling urine. In 1909, Joyce wrote to his wife, 'When I wrote [Chamber Music], I was a lonely boy, walking about by myself at night and thinking that one day a girl would love me.'" (Wikipedia) "As the title suggests, [Chamber Music] is to be considered a set of songs rather than a collection of poems, as Joyce clearly stated in a letter to the English composer Geoffrey Molyneux Palmer (15 July 1909): 'I hope you may set all of Chamber Music in time. This was indeed partly my idea in writing it. The book is in fact a suite of songs . . .' Besides Palmer, a number of composers have set the poems to music, including Samuel Barber." (Literary Encyclopedia) Note: With few exceptions (always identified), we only stock books in exceptional condition, carefully preserved in archival, removable polypropylene sleeves. All orders are packaged with care and posted promptly. Satisfaction guaranteed. Bookseller Inventory # BB1432

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Chamber Music

Publisher: The Cornhill Company, Boston

Publication Date: 1918

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition:Fine

Edition: First Edition thus.

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