WAUGH Evelyn - Autograph Letter Signed 1960 regretting he cannot review a book
Evelyn WAUGH (1903-1966)Autograph Letter Signed (“Evelyn Waugh”) to Mr. Braybrooke [writer and editor Neville Braybrooke], thanking him for his book London Green, but regretting that he can do nothing to “prosper it”.
1 page small 4to, Combe Florey House, 2 July 1960.
“It was a kind thought to send me a copy of your London Green – a charming work which it is a pleasure to possess.
But, alas, I cant do anything to prosper it. I do scarcely any reviewing myself and have no personal acquaintance with any editors except that of the Tablet who has already noticed it. I wish I could help, but can’t.”
The book in question is Neville Braybrooke’s London Green: The Story of Kensington Gardens, Hyde Park, Green Park & St. James Park which appeared in 1959.
Braybrooke was, by all accounts, a thoroughly nice, one could even say a selfless man, and one must regret that Waugh did not make some effort to help his book sales. Nancy Mitford’s novel, Don’t Tell Alfred, appeared later that year; Waugh and Mitford were great friends, and he was quite determined to review the novel. He failed to get the Spectator, who had already allocated a reviewer, but his review of Alfred appeared in the London Magazine. Braybrooke’s “charming work” appears to have been deprived of the benefits of being reviewed by Waugh.
Evelyn Waugh converted to Catholicism as an adult, but Braybrooke was brought up a Catholic, attended Ampleforth College, and never wavered in his faith. Like Waugh, he contributed to The Tablet, and in 1966 his obituary of Evelyn Waugh appeared in the Catholic Herald.
The letter, on pale blue paper, has some light browning at the edges and visible folds, but is otherwise in clear, legible condition.
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