EZRA POUNDA Lume Spento. In the City of Albus
. [Venice: A. Antonini, 1908, from imprint on title verso]. First edition, 100 copies issued, signed in ink by Ezra Pound on the title page. Original printed blue paper wrappers, slightly trimmed and overlayed at an early date with hand-decorated paper, housed in a modern clamshell case. 8 x 6 inches (20.5 x 15.5 cm); [2 ff.], 72 pp. The dedication leaf has a small portrait, apparently of William Brooks Smith, cut out and mounted beneath his name (possibly by Pound or his mother). As noted, the wrappers have a mounted overlay of decorative paper of some significant age, with a presentation to Omar Pound in a non-authorial hand on the inside front wrapper, dated Xmas 1947 (this is from Isabel Pound, Ezra Pound's mother). There is a short tear to the front joint and some wrapper wear. The text block is loosening in the wrappers. Two leaves have been excised (one partially) and crudely replaced (sig. 2; leaves 3 and 4, pp. 13-16). Page 29 bears an ink transcription into English of the Italian motto. There are various notations in pencil throughout.
One of the most remarkable and desirable first works by any modern poet, this copy belonging to his family circle. Pound's original intention was to title the book La Fraisne ("The Ash Tree"). Just after the book was sent to press, Pound learned of the death of his dear friend William Brooke Smith, and changed the title to A Lume Spento ("with tapers quenched") from a line in the Purgatorio referring to a mourning ceremony. Gallup A1. Goldwasser copy H.
Isabel Pound to Omar Shakespear Pound
C Estate of Omar Shakespear Pound
Additional Notes & Condition Report
No condition report? Click here to request one.