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A Draft of XXX Cantos
Paris: Hours Press,, 1930. Octavo. Original tan cloth, titles to spine and upper board in red. Illustrated bookplate of Dudley Eaton Fitts to front pastedown. Spine rolled and dulled, corners nicked, tanning to pp.98-9, light spotting to endpapers, otherwise sound and internally clean, a very good copy. First edition, first impression, an important review copy with the ownership inscription of American poet, critic, and translator Dudley Fitts (1903-68) on the front free endpaper, "Dudley Fitts: New York, 1930, for review. Hound + Horn", as well as his illustrated bookplate and several annotations to the text. Dudley Fitts was well a well-respected member of the modernist literati, acquainted with the likes of Pound, Joyce, and Eliot. The copy was clearly sent by the publisher (Nancy Cunard) for review, perhaps at the behest of Pound himself, and makes for an excellent association. Hound & Horn magazine published the excerpted Cantos XXVII-XXX in April-June 1930, and Fitts followed up (January-March 1931) with a significant review entitled "Music fit for the Odes", which Betsy Erkkila has termed "perhaps the first academic analysis of the Cantos". In it he defended Pound's complex work: "the criticism that XXX Cantos is incomprehensible, is a false criticism... The Cantos will baffle persons who are willing to be baffled", and closed by heaping praise on "the greatest conception of our day... Technically it is nearly faultless; as a craftsman Pound is so far in advance of the rest of us that his book should be universally read, if only as a manual of poetic technic. But it is much more than splendid writing. It is a gallant, proud attempt to assert the positive value of experience. It is very nearly the great music, 'fit for the Odes'". Hound & Horn magazine was founded by two Harvard undergraduates in 1927, taking its name from a line of Ezra Pound's poem "The White Stag", and soon became an international literary magazine sold and read both sides of the Atlantic. Pound attempted to arrange an "alliance" with the magazine and in 1929 was appointed a contributing editor, sending them his own work to publish as well as that of his recent Rapallo discoveries such as Bunting, Mcalmon, Rodker, and Zukofsky. Pound soon feel out with the editors, however, and began in his correspondence to refer to it as the "Bitch & Bugle". It folded in 1934. This is one of 200 copies on Canson-Montgolfier soleil velin paper, from a total edition of 212.
      [Bookseller: Peter Harrington]
Last Found On: 2018-02-01           Check availability:      Biblio    

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