22 June 2010
THE PROPERTY OF A PRIVATE COLLECTOR
[KEROUAC, Jack (1922-1969)]. BROOKE, Stopford A. English Literature from the Beginning to the Norman Conquest. (New York: Macmillan, 1898). 8o, blue cloth (spine chipped, hinges weak, dampstaining to lower cover). KEROUAC'S SIGNED COPY. Provenance: Polytechnic Institute of Brooklyn (stamp on title page); Jack Kerouac (signature in pencil on flyleaf, "John Kerouac 1949"); by descent to the present owner.
"JOHN KEROUAC, 1949". Kerouac's copy of a 19th century English textbook, acquired and read one year before the publication of his first novel, The Town and the City. There is a paper-clip burn at the chapter on Boewulf, where Brooke provides a helpful summary of the saga. Some of the chapter headings must have appealed to Kerouac as well: "Semi-heathen Poetry," "The Coming of Christianity."
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