Author Topic: How are books of letters put together?  (Read 784 times)

Sin Agog

  • Dogs fucked the pope; no fault of mine
How are books of letters put together?
« on: April 24, 2019, 11:53:04 AM »
I'm reading Byron's letters right now because the silly get ordered his memoirs to be burnt after he died, and one of his sillier get friends went ahead and actually did it.  Always been curious how these things were made.  Was it common practice to write two copies of a letter- one for your recipient, one for posterity- or did publishers painstakingly rifle through the drawers of all their friends for fragments of written conversations?

By the way, the best letter so far is the one where he alludes to getting a bear to stay in his dorm to piss off the college.  I'm sure some here have had worse roommates.

Re: How are books of letters put together?
« Reply #1 on: April 24, 2019, 11:57:18 AM »
By the way, the best letter so far is the one where he alludes to getting a bear to stay in his dorm to piss off the college. 

I guess homophobia was much more prevalent then, it was nice that he rubbed it in their faces like that

Re: How are books of letters put together?
« Reply #2 on: April 24, 2019, 12:39:37 PM »
I'm reading Byron's letters right now because the silly get ordered his memoirs to be burnt after he died, and one of his sillier get friends went ahead and actually did it.

I've leaned against the fireplace they were burnt in.


chveik

  • Des mots des mots autour de ma jeunesse morte.
Re: How are books of letters put together?
« Reply #3 on: April 24, 2019, 01:05:15 PM »
Was it common practice to write two copies of a letter- one for your recipient, one for posterity- or did publishers painstakingly rifle through the drawers of all their friends for fragments of written conversations?

I'd say the latter, but given the vanity of some writers, I wouldn't be that surprised if the former occurred sometimes.

buttgammon

  • You can't trust a man what's made of gas
Re: How are books of letters put together?
« Reply #4 on: April 24, 2019, 01:49:04 PM »
I've done some very, very minor supporting research for a collection of letters, and it seems the standard thing is to go through the collections of the recipients. This is just as well because apart from the more vain and narcissistic writers out there, others (like Samuel Beckett) had a habit of destroying their letters.

Re: How are books of letters put together?
« Reply #5 on: April 24, 2019, 11:02:03 PM »
I've leaned against the fireplace they were burnt in.



That was a memorable school trip. 'Here's the human skull Lord Byron used to drink wine out of... and over there, you'll see the bedroom where he writes about having, ah, relations with his sister...'

Gorgeous place though.

Re: How are books of letters put together?
« Reply #6 on: April 26, 2019, 03:54:19 PM »
Isn't every book a book of letters?

Sin Agog

  • Dogs fucked the pope; no fault of mine
Re: How are books of letters put together?
« Reply #7 on: April 26, 2019, 06:26:56 PM »
Isn't every book a book of letters?


Not if it's written in kanji or heiroglyphs. In fact, I make a point only to read books of heiroglyphs.  They're also known as pyramids.

Re: How are books of letters put together?
« Reply #8 on: April 26, 2019, 06:51:31 PM »
I wondered this about that book of letters by the Mitford sisters to one another. Find it weird that they found a cache of letters in the effects of all of them.