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CELINE, LOUIS FERDINAND DESTOUCHES. Five autograph letters signed and one postcard photograph signed (all "Louis"), TO HIS LOVER ELIZABETH CRAIG (addressed "Darling one," etc.). [Paris and Geneva, 1926-27; 1934]. Together 9 pages, oblong 12mo-folio, EACH LAMINATED (PROCESS IRREVERSIBLE), in fractured English.

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CELINE, LOUIS FERDINAND DESTOUCHES. Five autograph letters signed and one postcard photograph signed (all "Louis"), TO HIS LOVER ELIZABETH CRAIG (addressed "Darling one," etc.). [Paris and Geneva, 1926-27; 1934]. Together 9 pages, oblong 12mo-folio, EACH LAMINATED (PROCESS IRREVERSIBLE), in fractured English.

"COME BACK QUICK OR I'LL BEAT YOU ALL UP"

The only surviving letters from Céline to Craig, his American lover and the dedicatee of his first book, Voyage au Bout de la Nuit. Elizabeth Craig was a dancer who was Céline's constant companion from the time he wrote his first play until after his first book was published. In 1933, she moved to California, married and started a new life. Céline continued to write to her for some years, hoping she would come back to him. She burned all of the hundreds of letters from Céline, with the exception of the ones offered here, which are among the earliest he wrote to her. These were published in Letters to Elizabeth, edited by Alphonse Juillans (Stanford, Cal., 1990); a copy of the book, 8vo, original wrappers, accompanies the letters.

"Friday": "Always the same -- I am back to my play. I think it will be funny -- but just me it is not much for a critic -- we will see later on -- If I go through with the money from the League I could unite with your parents and pay you a fur coat -- ?... Longing to see you quick -- I love you very very much. You have such a good hart that I am afraid of asking so much from you..." Another letter dated "Friday": "... I am workg very much -- the play is allmost finish -- I am laughg in doing it. I have a little private theatre in my own room. I am probably the only one that will ever be amused..." In yet another letter dated just "Friday": "What is the matter? I wonder where you are -- if you far -- talking to the moon? Well! do write to me a little -- Squirrel? Lost? Eaten all up? or making a fortune? I doubt? Fortunes are not made in a week. Come back quick or I'll beat you all up..." (7)
Provenance
Unnamed consignor (sale, Sotheby's New York, 14 June 1993, lot 99).
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