Maggs Bros Ltd

England have my Bones.

WHITE T.H. (1936)

£2500.00 

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Second impression. 8vo., original black cloth. London, Collins.

Inscribed by the author with a remarkable bit of verse invective against the second world war, parodying Psalm 24 as "Psmalm 24": "The earth is the sword's, and all that therein is: the compass of the aeroplane and they that shell therefrom. / For He hath compounded it upon the seas: and despaired of it among the duds. / Who shall ascend into the pill-box of the sword: or who shall rise up into his gas-proof place? / Even he that hath rubber gloves and a gas mask: and hath not lift up his mind unto sanity, but sworn to deceive his neighbours. / He shall receive the blessing from the sword: and blood thirstiness from the god of his damnation. / This is the generation of them that seek him: some of them that seek thy face, O Judas. / Blow up your heads, O ye gates, and be ye blown up ye everlasting doors: and the king of Tories shall come in. / Who is the king of Tories: it is the sword strong and mighty, ... the sword mighty in battle. / Blow up your heads, O ye gates, and be ye blown up ye everlasting doors: and the king of Tories shall come in. / Who is the king of Tories: ... the Lord of Ghosts, he is the King of Tories. with love to Tony, from T.H. White".

This full version of the psalm appears to be unpublished, but the final few lines are used in The Book of Merlyn, the posthumously published fifth volume of The Once and Future King, where they are part of a grotesque service performed by the anthropomorphic ant colony into which Arthur has been inserted. The only Tony who appears in the various sources (principally the White-Garnett letters and Sylvia Townsend Warner's biography) is Tony Walton, husband of Julie Andrews. In 1960 she starred in "Camelot", based on his work, and the three of them struck up a rather unexpected friendship. Notes in another hand on the back endpapers. An excellent copy.

Stock Code: 131675