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Last symbolist poems and first Dada poems of André Breton, all constituting Mont de piété [Pawnshop] and dating from 1914 to 1919. Torn out, copied by hand or by machine, almost all the poems of Mont de piété appear here. Running through the collection are the guiding lights of Breton’s youth: Symbolism and Valéry, Derain, Reverdy, and especially Apollinaire, omnipresent in the poem ‘Décembre’ [December], as elsewhere - from his dedication to poetic form, through this ‘bouchon de gui‘ [cap of mistletoe], which one would want to capitalize. ‘Décembre’ was published in L'Éventail [Array] on February 15, 1919, shortly after an article by Breton dedicated to... Guillaume Apollinaire, of course. This influence, at one time decisive though destined to be surpassed, was jettisoned by the young poet using his own texts in Mont de piété, which signals both an acknowledgment of a debt to his masters and bidding them farewell. A filial piety not without ambiguity... He kills off Apollinaire a second time (crushed under scaffolding...) in ‘Une maison peu solide’ [An Unstable House], dedicated this time to Tzara... Similarly, ‘Pour Lafcadio’ [For Lafcadio], which appears in the same bundle, attests to an admiration for the Gide of Les Caves du Vatican [The Vatican Cellars] - but it is published in Tzara's Zurich review, Dada (1919). One passes from one world to another. A text unpublished at the time, ‘À vous seule’ [To You Alone], published for the first time in the first volume of the Pléiade Œuvres complètes, completes the set: this time, it is Vaché we are mourning. [Atelier André Breton website, 2005] Seven autograph poems, one signed and one typescript signed, eight sheets. - ‘Pour Lafcadio’ [For Lafcadio], autograph poem, 1 page in-12 in black ink. - ‘Monsieur V.’ [Mister V], autograph poem signed, 1 page in-12 in blue ink. - ‘À vous seule’ [To You Alone], autograph poem, 1 page in-4° in blue ink. - ‘Façon’ [Mode], autograph poem, 1 page in-4° in blue ink. - ‘Décembre’ [December], autograph poem, 1 1/2 pages in blue ink; a poem dedicated to Guillaume Apollinaire. - ‘Poème’ [Poem], autograph poem, 1 page in-4° in blue ink, dated 19 February 1916; a poem dedicated to Léon-Paul Fargue. - ‘André Derain’, autograph poem, 1 page in-4° in blue ink. - Décembre’ [December], 1 page in-4° typescript, signed on the back by Breton in blue pencil. Enclosed are four printed proofs of Mont de Piété: ‘L'an suave’ [The Sweet Year], ‘Une maison peu solide’ [An Unstable House], ‘Façon’ [Mode], ‘Pour Lafcadio’ [For Lafcadio], each proof titled ‘Mont de Piété’ and signed by Breton. [Auction Catalogue, 2003]


André Breton (Édition de Marguerite Bonnet avec la collaboration de Philippe Bernier, Étienne-Alain Hubert et José Pierre), Mont de Piété 1913-1919, Alentours I, et Inédits I, 1911-1919, Œuvres complètes, tome I, Bibliothèque de la Pléiade, Paris, Gallimard, 1988, pages 6, 7, 8, 10, 11, 13, 15 et 43.


Creation date1914 à 1919
Bibliographical materialPhotocopy, MS, TS and print - black and blue inks.

Bibliothèque littéraire Jacques Doucet, Paris : BRT8-BRT 13 ; BRT 14 ; BRT 15-BRT 16

Breton Auction, 2003Lot 2003
Keywords, , , ,
CategoriesAndre Breton's Manuscripts
Set[AB's Manuscripts] Miscellaneous Manuscripts
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[Jamais je ne gagnerai...]

André Gide

Carte postale d'André Gide à André Breton datant de 1918.

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