Lot 26
  • 26

Margaret Mitchell

5,000 - 7,000 GBP
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  • Margaret Mitchell
  • Gone With The Wind. New York: The Macmillan Company, 1939
2 volumes, 8vo, FIRST EDITION THUS, NUMBER 36 OF 1000 COPIES, WITH AN FOUR LINE AUTOGRAPH VERSE ADDRESSED TO VIVIEN LEIGH ("To Vivien Leigh | 'Life's Pattern pricked with a scarlet thread | where once we worked with a gray, | to remind us all how we played our parts | in the shock of an epic day' | Margaret Mitchell") on a folded card laid down to the front pastedown endpaper, original brown and pale blue-green cloth, top edges gilt, patterned endpapers, gilt on spines slightly faded, some minor soiling to boards of volume one

Catalogue Note

VIVIEN LEIGH'S AUTHORIAL PRESENTATION COPY OF GONE WITH THE WIND. Margaret Mitchell gave Vivien this book when the two women met in Atlanta, Georgia, during preparations for the world premiere of the film that took place in the city on 15 December 1939. Vivien wrote to Mitchell on 14 December thanking her for the book and asking her to inscribe it for her. Mitchell replied on 10 January 1940 explaining that she had stopped inscribing copies of Gone With The Wind several years earlier: "there is no one for whom I'd rather do this favour than you who brought Scarlett to life in a way that left me shaken and almost speechless. But I just can't do it. I hope you'll understand." (John Wiley, The Scarlett Letters: The Making of the Film Gone With the Wind (2011), pp.329-31).

By way of compromise, however, Mitchell enclosed with her letter a loose leaf with four lines of verse taken from Robert W. Service's poem 'The Revelation', inscribed to Vivien. Vivien replied to her on 8 February, informing her that she had placed the verses in the book. She also told Mitchell that her love for Gone With The Wind long pre-dated her involvement in the film ("...Even if I had not played 'Scarlett' I should owe you a great debt of gratitude..."). 

Sotheby's is grateful to John Wiley for his assistance with cataloguing this lot.