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French Language or translation from or about the French

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  • The Fortunes of Fifi – Molly Elliot Seawell – First Edition 1903

    The Fortunes of Fifi – Molly Elliot Seawell – First Edition 1903

    A first edition published by Bobbs-Merrill, Indianapolis in 1903. Interestingly, carries the booksellers sticker of Dymock’s Book Arcae, 428 George Street. Dymocks, Australia’s favourite book store was started in 1879 but soon moved to the aforementioned address as the business took off.

    Fifi is a young actress in fourth rate theatre in Paris. Napoleon is involved in a minor way. She has confidantes and admirers and much love and lost love ensues. She turns out to be related to a certain person in very high place … things get rich and in a tangle which really she is not that thrilled with – eventually, she ends up with the one she should. Complex and intriguing romance. The outline is easily told … it became an early silent movie circa WW! And was very successful.

    Octavo, 239 pages, with decorative end papers that match the delightful pictorial covers. A very good copy.

    Classic Romance based in Paris, became one of the very first movies.

    $50.00

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  • Maigret Victorious – Georges Simenon – First Collection 1975

    Maigret Victorious – Georges Simenon – First Collection 1975

    Published by the Book Club with arrangement with Hamish Hamilton, a first of type 1975.

    Octavo, 281 pages all in excellent condition.

    Three on a plate – Maigret’s Memoirs (better than most); the Headless Corpse (A Voyager favourite) and Maigret and the Saturday Caller.

    Maigret trifecta – get your pipe lit!

    $30.00

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  • The Memoirs of Sarah Bernhardt  – and her novel “In the Clouds” – Edited Sandy Lesberg

    The Memoirs of Sarah Bernhardt – and her novel “In the Clouds” – Edited Sandy Lesberg

    Original memoirs from early childhood through the First American Tour edited and introduced by Sandy Lesberg. Also, the first English language publication of her only novel “In the Clouds”.

    Large octavo, 256 pages of which the last 52 comprise the short novel.

    A first edition 1977 published by Peebles Press, New York and London. A very good copy.

    Nicely illustrated from period photographs, and Clouds illustrated with line drawings by Georges Clairin.

    The adventurous Bernhardt not satisfied with being the most admired actor of the 19thC took to some strange activities … riding whales, collecting exotic animals, early ballooning and, was a accomplished artist and sculptor.

    Sarah Bernhardt by Sarah Bernhardt

    $45.00

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  • Sarah Bernhardt – William Embodden (Introduction Sir John Gielgud)

    Sarah Bernhardt – William Embodden (Introduction Sir John Gielgud)

    A first edition published by Studio Vista (part of Cassell), London in 1974.

    Quarto, 176 pages, some signs of age still a very good copy of a excellent work on Bernhardt, not the least for the introduction by Sir John Gielgud.

    Nicely illustrated throughout from period photographs. Includes our image of Sarah as Frou-Frou.

    Accompanied by a useful appendix listing the plays in which she acted chronologically and a healthy bibliography.

    Sarah Bernhardt – well-presented and with exceptional images.

    $40.00

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  • French Thetrical Legend – Sarah Bernhardt – Signed Manuscript Letter 1887, Photographic Portrait and Ephemera

    French Thetrical Legend – Sarah Bernhardt – Signed Manuscript Letter 1887, Photographic Portrait and Ephemera

    Likely the 19th Century’s greatest actress Sarah Bernhardt (1844-1923). A fine hand with bold signature dated 1887. Her personal grey bordered stationery with the Quand Meme motif.

    She addresses “Mon Cher Paul” mentions her pretty niece and trying to arrange a suitable time to catch up.

    The letter is accompanied by a photographic portrait of Bernhardt, a cabinet card depicting the legend in Camille by Dumas which she performed in 1882. 16cm by 11cm mounted on original card minor edge chips, plain back.

    Also relating to her tour of America (see below) two “Between the Acts & Bravo” cigarette cards, also from the 1880’s, issued by Thomas Hall, New York. 7.5cm by 4cm each, very good condition.

    1887 was an interesting time for the “Divine Sarah”. She was well established by this time but had

    developed an extremely lavish lifestyle and had a gambler for a son that she supported financially. Already accustomed to touring a mammoth tour of South and North America was organised by her manager Edouard Jarett. It was hugely successful an she returned to Paris the year of this letter with a million francs. Unfortunately, her manager died of a heart attack on the tour … it didn’t stop Sarah indulging in some of her favourite pastimes … such as collecting exotic animals. She brought back an alligator that seemingly was partial to champagne. Among her other strange activities was sleeping in a coffin when trying to get into character for rather dowdy parts.

    Sarah Bernhardt – Signed manuscript Letter – 1887 – with Cabinet Card from that period.

    $370.00

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  • The Magician –  Georges Simenon – First English Edition

    The Magician – Georges Simenon – First English Edition

    Published by Hamish Hamilton, London a first English edition 1974. Translated from the French by Helen Sebba.

    Octavo, 188 pages all in pretty good condition.

    The conjurer liked a drink in the Montmartre after his show. He overindulged and caused issues in his marriage. Their relationship continued with quiet intimacy … until ill health changed all that …

    Simenon at his most poignant

    $30.00

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