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    Friday, July 8th, 2011

    Letters from Theodore Roosevelt at Mealy's book sale. (Click on image to enlarge) UPDATE: THIS MADE 1,800

    US President Theodore Roosevelt and Irish poet William Butler Yeats are among the personalities to feature at a Mealy’s sale in Dublin on July 19. An archive of Yeats letters and a presidential correspondence  are among outstanding items in the 670 lot auction of the Fred Hanna Collection at the D4 Hotel.
    The Yeats archive comprises 13 letters and cards mostly from 1898 to journalist and former MP Thomas Gill.  T.P. Gill (1858 – 1931), from Co. Tipperary was an Irish Party M.P. 1885 – 1892. He resigned after failing to heal the breach over Parnell. In August 1898 he became editor of the Dublin Daily Express, with a brief to expand its arts coverage. Until he lost the job in Sept. 1899 he had considerable powers of artistic patronage, and so was of great interest to Yeats, and his literary colleagues. In 1900 Gill became Secretary of the Dept. of Agriculture and Technical Instruction in Dublin, another influential post which he held for 20 years.

    The Yeats Archive at Mealy's book sale. (Click on image to enlarge) UPDATE: THIS LOT WAS WITHDRAWN.

    The letters show how, in 1899, Gill was consulted  over a disagreement with Edward Martyn over the theological soundness of ‘The Countess Cathleen’ (a verse drama by Yeats dedicated to Maud Gonne). In a letter of May 22 of that year Yeats suggests that the Express might quote Max Beerbohm’s comments on the play. In a 1900 note Yeats says he thinks George Moore would accept a seat in Parliament, ‘if he had a definite offer of a seat without a contest.’ An unsigned typescript letter to Yeats, probably from Gill, advises him to go ahead with ‘The Countess Cathleen’ and to pay no heed to the theologians.  The correspondence is estimated at 8,000-14,000.
    Lot 495 is a correspondence from Theordore Roosevelt to T.P. Gill, with whom there is apparently a family connection.  It includes a typescript signed letter on White House headed paper from Roosevelt to Gill, Sept. 1903, thanking him for sending the ‘Cucullain Saga.’ ‘I had ordered it myself and have now cancelled the order and have ordered Douglas Hyde’s “A Literary History of Ireland”. There is a presidential Visiting Card inscribed by Roosevelt  ‘With hearty thanks for your congratulations’ addressed to T.P. Gill, Department of Agriculture, Dublin.
    A typed signed letter from Roosevelt (in London) to Gill, 28 May 1910 confirms arrangements for a meeting, ‘It is as you know, the most difficult thing in the world for me to get any time for myself. But come in at 5.30 on Thursday next .. and I will do my best.’  There is banquet programme for Eighth Annual Banquet of New York Society of the Order of the Founders and Patriots of America, April, 29, 1904 and a collection of  Presidential documents and memorabilia.  The estimate for the correspondence is 2,000-3,000.
    The catalogue for the sale is on-line at


    Monday, December 6th, 2010

    The Holy Office, a broadside from James Joyce, at Mealy's book auction. (click to enlarge and read) UPDATE: IT MADE 22,000

    A rare James Joyce broadside heads Mealy’s December sale of  books, literature, manuscripts, and maps on December 14 at the D-4 Hotel in Dublin.  Only a handful of copies of a caustic attack entitled “The Holy Office” are known.  It was distributed privately to friends. This one belonged to Thomas Keohler, poet and friend of Joyce. It is estimated at 15,000-20,000.

    A collection of four letters between Joyce and Keohler is estimated at 6,000-8,000 and a copy of the original recordings by Joyce of part of Finnegan’s Wake is estimated at 2,000-3,000.
    The 950 lot sale includes a first limited edition of Ulysses (7,000-9,000) and an original Cuala Press Visitor’s Book with 1,900 signatures. The most remarkable is an entry where W.B. Yeats and Maud Gonne signed together on October 18, 1908. The poet and his muse were lovers for a brief time following the break up of her marriage to John MacBride. It is estimated at 8,000-12,000.  There is a collection of previously unrecorded letters by Sean O’Casey and first, signed, and limited editions by Oscar Wilde (The Ballad of Reading Gaol, and The Picture of Dorian Gray), Patrick Kavanagh, (The Green Fool, and Collected Poems), and Flann O’Brien (An Beal Bocht, At Swim Two Birds).
    UPDATE:  IN a highly successful sale the Joyce broadside sold for 22,000. It was bought by a private collector. A series of letters between Myles na gCopaleen (Brian O’Nolan) and his publishers and agents from the 1960’s also made 22,000.  The Cuala Press visitors book sold for 17,000 and the Sean O’Casey letters made 10,000.