The Picture Letters of Beatrix Potter
His list of favorite poets includes “myself” and his favorite occupation is “reading my own sonnets”.
Ladies and gentlemen, Oscar Wilde.
Niccolò Machiavelli, Il Principe, original manuscript (1513)
Mark Twain’s handwritten manuscript pages of The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.
Marcel Duchamp - Tzanck Check (1919)
Unable to pay his American dentist, Daniel Tzanck, in cash, Duchamp crafted and signed a false cheque written to the amount he was billed. Delighted by the gift of a real-life signed Duchamp piece, Tzanck kept the cheque for many years until, so the story goes, Duchamp bought the artwork back (at a far greater sum than the fee for his cavity fillings).
Across the middle in red is the word ‘ORIGINAL’, which plays on the authenticity of the check as a legal promissory note but also speaks to this check’s status as a unique art object, signed by the artist. Art historian Katy Siegel notes in Art Works: Money (2004) that the signature is both the “ultimate proof of identity” and “a promise to pay — the essence of credit. The signature…assures the buyer that the aesthetic and social value created by the artist is contained within it.”
Burgess deliberating about whether an epilogue is necessary.
T. S. Eliot manuscript.
Excerpt from Dracula manuscript, Rosenbach Museum and Library
I share a birthday with this influential Irish author (who is also the subject of the Google Doodle today), so I thought I’d share this. The Rosenbach Museum and Library in Philadelphia holds Stoker’s notes for his famous (and infamous) novel — I’m pretty sure it has to be the institution described at the very end of Elizabeth Kostova’s The Historian under another name.