HEMINGWAY, Ernest Miller (1899-1961). In Our Time. Paris: Three Mountains Press, 1924.
8° (258 x 165mm). Woodcut portrait frontispiece after Henry Strater, woodcut press device on title. (Very light browning, mainly confined to the margins.) Original tan boards with lettering and press device in black over collage printed in red, later cloth box with gilt calf lettering-piece (lower portion of boards stained, spine damaged by damp causing small losses, skilfully rebacked).
FIRST EDITION, NO. 63 OF 170 COPIES. Ezra Pound had persuaded William Bird (the owner of The Three Mountains Press, to whom he had been introduced by Hemingway) to publish a series of six volumes by contemporary writers, under the collective title 'The Inquest into the State of Contemporary English Prose'; contributions would be solicited from living writers by Pound, and Hemingway's Three Stories and Ten Poems would be one of the volumes in the series (for volumes I-V of the series, see lot 802). However, during a visit to Rapallo to see Pound (who was, in the event, away), Robert McAlmon met Hemingway, and the two became friends, leading McAlmon to offer to publish Hemingway's work under the imprint of his Contact Editions. Following the famous theft in Paris of Hadley's suitcase containing all of Hemingway's work, this meant that Bird was suddenly deprived of the last title of the series--indeed, the 'Printer's Notice' issued to advertise the series simply lists 'Blank, by Ernest M. Hemingway' as the final volume. Eventually it was decided that Hemingway would re-work the six 'miniatures' which had been published in the Little Review no. IX (Spring, 1923), and add twelve more, giving a total of eighteen, equally grouped as sextets around the author's experiences of newspapers, war, and bullfighting. 'Charles Fenton rightly observed that these miniatures, or vignettes, "were a blueprint of what Hemingway was attempting stylistically and a definition of the attitudes he was forming about his experiences"' (Published in Paris p.104). According to Hanneman, 'The title is apparently an ironic allusion to the twelth line of the Episcopalian "Evening Prayer": "Give peace in our time, O Lord"'. Hanneman Hemingway A2; Connolly The Modern Movement 49; Published in Paris p.406.