View full screen - View 1 of Lot 15. Sylvia Plath | Typed letter signed, to Ted Hughes, on her study of the tarot and Cambridge life, 17 October 1956.
15

Sylvia Plath | Typed letter signed, to Ted Hughes, on her study of the tarot and Cambridge life, 17 October 1956

Margin Scheme

Estimate:

7,000 - 9,000 GBP

Sylvia Plath | Typed letter signed, to Ted Hughes, on her study of the tarot and Cambridge life, 17 October 1956

Sylvia Plath | Typed letter signed, to Ted Hughes, on her study of the tarot and Cambridge life, 17 October 1956

Estimate:

7,000 - 9,000 GBP

Lot sold:

12,600

GBP

Sylvia Plath


Typed letter signed, to Ted Hughes ("dearest love ted...")


on her study of the tarot ("...I meditated on the Fool and the Juggler, staring at the pictures, reading and re-reading the lucid, pleasantly written descriptions of them and their significance..."), reporting on a letter from her mother following the death of her maternal grandmother ("...everybody is trying to draw her out, so she won't brood about the echoing house and my grammy's absence, which must be terrifically oppressing, after a lifetime of her living with us..."), their latest rejections from magazines, and college life, scattered autograph corrections, five-line autograph postscript, 4 pages, 8vo (177 x 140mm), blue writing paper, [Whitstead, Newnham College, Cambridge], 17 October 1956


"...how I love your letters. picture me sitting at the head of the long table in whitstead dining room, immersed in reading and re-reading your words (except for one or two of the latter, I can read your writing fine; it is beautiful writing; it is the writing of a genius and a teddy-ponk), letter propped up against the butter dish, eyes cutting through the charcoal smoke arising from the toaster..."


A VIVID SNAPSHOT OF PLATH. She continued to juggle her academic work - she had a paper to finish on St Augustine's City of God - with her determined efforts to further both of their writing careers, but nonetheless found time to develop new ideas. She had gained an interest in the occult from Hughes, and had bought a copy of B.A. Rákóczi's The Painted Caravan at an occult bookshop during their weekend in London, which she now declares "my favorite book". She is drawn to the powerful symbolism of the tarot and the idea that "the Initiate can penetrate beyond the surface denotative meaning of the symbols, through the veils, etc. to the Alone". Plath's own tarot pack survives (see lot 22) and she made use of tarot imagery in several poems, most obviously 'The Hanging Man'. 



LITERATURE:

The Letters of Sylvia Plath: Volume One, pp.1304-7

Condition is described in the main body of the cataloguing, where appropriate


Condition 11 of the Conditions of Business for Buyers (Online Only) is not applicable to this lot.


The lot is sold in the condition it is in at the time of sale. The condition report is provided to assist you with assessing the condition of the lot and is for guidance only. Any reference to condition in the condition report for the lot does not amount to a full description of condition. The images of the lot form part of the condition report for the lot. Certain images of the lot provided online may not accurately reflect the actual condition of the lot. In particular, the online images may represent colors and shades which are different to the lot's actual color and shades. The condition report for the lot may make reference to particular imperfections of the lot but you should note that the lot may have other faults not expressly referred to in the condition report for the lot or shown in the online images of the lot. The condition report may not refer to all faults, restoration, alteration or adaptation. The condition report is a statement of opinion only. For that reason, the condition report is not an alternative to taking your own professional advice regarding the condition of the lot. NOTWITHSTANDING THIS ONLINE CONDITION REPORT OR ANY DISCUSSIONS CONCERNING A LOT, ALL LOTS ARE OFFERED AND SOLD "AS IS" IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF SALE/BUSINESS APPLICABLE TO THE RESPECTIVE SALE.