208
Joyce, James
Estimate
15,00020,000
LOT SOLD. 43,750 USD (Hammer Price with Buyer's Premium)
JUMP TO LOT
208
Joyce, James
Estimate
15,00020,000
LOT SOLD. 43,750 USD (Hammer Price with Buyer's Premium)
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

Fine Books and Manuscripts, Including Americana

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New York

Joyce, James
Ulysses (pp. 136-137). Paris: Shakespeare and Company, 1924

12" single-sided 78 rpm recording with printed white paper label signed and dated by Joyce, "James Joyce / Paris / 27 November 1924;" label unbrowned, shellac unscratched and apparently unplayed, an extremely fine example. Modern sleeve within custom half morocco gilt slipcase.


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Literature

See: James Joyce. New York: Glenn Horowitz, 1996. Item 74; Slocum and Cahoon, p. 173

Catalogue Note

First pressing of only 20 copies of Joyce reading from the "Aeolus" episode of his masterpiece. One of the great Joyce rarities, first mention of this seems to be in a 1935 Beach catalogue of Joyce material, wherein it was offered with the following note: "Phonograph record of a reading by James Joyce from Ulysses pages 136-137, recorded by His Master's Voice on one side only....Signed James Joyce, Paris, 17 November 1926 (date of recording). Only remaining copy of the 30 that were made."

However, the date of recording and claim that 30 were pressed differs greatly from the note she wrote on the label of another example, "Only 20 copies were made of this record S.B." (see Horowitz). On that record, as on the present, Joyce has written the "27 November 1924" date with his signature, placing its appearance two years earlier than the date Beach mentions in her catalogue.

Perhaps such discrepancies are unsurprising and attest to the absolute scarcity of the item, with surviving copies being so uncommon that Beach herself was unclear on the details only a decade later. The present is indeed a true Joyce rarity. This copy and the one offered in the Horowitz  catalogue are the only examples we have been able to trace being offered in the last 30 years (the latter having first turned up at auction in 1994). Previous, the only real mention of this in the market came from the sale of a signed label only (again, with the 27 November, 1924 date) at Sotheby's London in 1979. Slocum and Cahoon were only aware of 4 copies (including one owned by a private collector and one can not discount the possibility it is the present copy) though they did mention "a few broken or damaged copies... in the libraries of American collectors." Our research indicates there are perhaps no more than two or three unbroken copies of this record extant and even shattered examples are almost unheard of in commerce.

Fine Books and Manuscripts, Including Americana

|
New York