Émile Zola

French writer, 1840-1902

"Zola was the best-known practitioner of the literary school of naturalism and an important contributor to the development of theatrical naturalism. He was a major figure in the political liberalization of France and in the exoneration of the falsely accused and convicted army officer Alfred Dreyfus, which is encapsulated in the renowned newspaper headline ""J'accuse"". Zola was nominated for the first and second Nobel Prize in Literature in 1901 and 1902. His best known works are ""Thérèse Raquin"" (1867) and ""Germinal""; his 20 ""Rougon-Macquart"" novels are a panoramic account of the Second French Empire."

Source: Wikipedia

Zola, Emile

französischer Schriftsteller (1840-1902). Eigenh. Brief mit Unterschrift „Emile Zola“. Paris. 8vo. 2 pp.
$ 3,015 / 2.500 € (81765)

Der sehr interessante Brief von Emilé Zola ist an einen „Cher Monsieur“ [Jules Troubat] mit der Adresse Zolas „Paris, 23 rue de Boulogne“ gerichtet. Jules Troubat (1836-1914) war der letzte Sekretär nach dessen Tod Nachlassverwalter des Schriftstellers und Literaturkritikers Charles Sainte-Beuve (1804-1869). Zola widmet sich in dem Brief ausführlich Zola der Persönlichkeit und der Denkweise von Sainte-Beuve: „Cher Monsieur, J'ai lu vos lettres avec bien de l'intérêt. Elles ne me surprennent pas, car elles sont ce q qu’elles devaient être.

Vous avez eu simplement le tort, je crois, de chercher dans mes articles une physionomie complète de Sainte-Beuve, lorsque j'ai simple seulement voulu étudier, à son propos, une phase très caractéristique de notre critique française. Permettez-moi de vous dire aussi que je ne sais pas très bien ce que vous appelez mon « système ». Si c'est de ma personnalité dont vous parlez, il est certain qu'il m'est difficile de la dépouiller. J'admets avec vous, si vous le désirez, que Sainte-Beuve affectait d'avoir le système de ne pas avoir de système. Mais il avait une personnalité, et des plus marquées, des plus persistantes, contre laquelle je me suis heurté, dans chacune de ses pages. Voilà tout bonnement les deux systèmes en présence : la façon dont il sentait et la façon dont je sens ; et je suis persuadé d'une chose, c'est que je l'accepte, tandis qu'il ne m'aurait sans doute pas accepté. Donc ma formule est plus large. Le combat de la vérité sera éternel, même entre les hommes de bonne foi, parce que nous cherchons tous la vérité dans une voie différente. Enfin, vous avez senti que je voulais être juste, et cela me suffit. Je n’ai jamais eu l’ambition de vous en demander davantage. Un de ces jours, je complèterai mon étude par un article dont vos lettres m’ont donné l’idée. Il y a là pour moi un scrupule. Merci, cher monsieur, de l’attention avec laquelle vous voulez bien me lire, et croyez-moi votre très dévoué. Emile Zola | 23 rue de Boulogne“. Nach einer Passage, in der Zola ein „System“ der Art und Weise, wie in Frankreich auf Literatur geblickt wird, streift, unterstreicht er, dass Sainte-Beuve eine der ausgeprägtesten und hartnäckigsten Persönlichkeiten war, auf die er getroffen sei. Zola bemerkt, die beiden hätten unterschiedlicher kaum sein können, und dass er, Zola, Sainte-Beuve akzeptierte, aber bezweifelt, dass dies auch im umgekehrten Fall gegolten hätte. Danach äußert er sich dahingehend, dass das Ringen um die Wahrheit ewig anhalten werde, weil jeder für sich auf eine andere Art und Weise nach der Wahrheit suche. Zola merkt an, Troubat habe das Gefühl gehabt, dass Zola fair sein wollte - „und das reicht mir“. Charles-Augustin Sainte-Beuve rezensierte in seiner Rolle als Literaturkritier auch Bücher von Emilé Zola. Zum Beispiel schrieb er über dem Roman „Thérèse Raquin“ aus dem Jahr 1867. Saint-Beuve galt als Leuchtturm in der Literaturlandschaft Frankreichs im 19. Jahrhundert, seine Kritiken waren gefürchtet. Marcel Proust schrieb einen ganzen Aufsatz über Saint-Beuve. Zola wurde verrissen, Balzac bewertete Saint-Beuve völlig unter dem, was die Nachwelt schließlich von ihm hielt. Mit Victor Hugo überwarf er sich, die Brüder Goncourt wurden kritisiert, ebenso George Sand oder Guy de Maupassant. Emilé Zola traf Sainte-Beuve das erste Mal im Juni 1863, als er dem Literaturkritiker im Auftrag des Verlags Hachette Material für einen Artikel brachte. Wie in „Zola between Taine and Sainte-Beuve 1863-1869“ von R. Butler (The Modern Language Review, 1974) nachzulesen ist, schrieb Zola im Oktober 1879 einen Artikel für Le Massager de l’Europe, in dem er sich auf Sainte-Beuves Kritik an „Thérèse Raquin“ erinnerte. Es ist anzunehmen, dass sich der Briefwechsel zwischen Zola und Troubat darauf bezieht..

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Zola, Emile

Schriftsteller (1840-1902). AQS. O. O. u. D. ½ S. Gr.-8vo.
$ 2,171 / 1.800 € (32901/BN27587)

"Une oeuvre d'art est un coin de la creation vu a travers un temperament". - Slightly creased.

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Zola, Emile

French writer (1840-1902). Autograph letter signed. Paris. 4to (203 x 130 mm). 4 pp.
$ 14,472 / 12.000 € (59721/BN44233)

In French. On November 19, Zola writes to his wife: "I see that your day on Saturday was well spent: a visit at the curiosities merchants, lunch with the Luzzattos, a visit in the Coliseum, dinner at the Embassy. And how you pressed yourself to get double the benefit! You speak of leaving Rome Tuesday evening, that is, today. You will thus not have received the letter in which I advised you to stay until the Consistory. You have to return in the end, if you have had enough. Only, I am a bit embarrassed about my letters, as you didn t send me the dispatch I asked you to send three days before you leave Rome.

I'll take the chance and continue to write you at the Grand Hotel, from where my letters will no doubt be forwarded to you. Today I did up my first small packages and sent the first two chapters of Rome to the translators. Caponi will have these two chapters in his hands this evening, with the authorization to begin in La Tribuna of December 23. I haven't seen Caponi again; the seven hundred francs are embarrassing to him. I have negotiated everywhere for Rome except with Spain and America. Spain will come, but I doubt very much that America will this time. That will make a hole. All the same, I am counting on the translations bringing in thirty to forty thousand francs, which is a reasonable figure. After my lunch, Jules having told me the masons had finished their work in the old pit, I went down to see. That will make a superb cellar, much bigger than our old wine cellar. It will be cooler than the one we re using now; and you could store wine there. But I think it ought rather to be made into a coal cellar. One could easily store thirty or forty thousand kilogrammes there if there were a real reason for buying coal en gros, in great quantity. You will see. I took the liberty of opening a letter addressed in your name and stamped with a stamp of Lagesse; and I was right, for it contained simply a receipt for two hundred francs that he no doubt owed you. Giacomelli has lost his wife. I am sending him your card and mine, with a word of sympathy. The day was quite cold and foggy. This is decidedly villainous weather. As soon as you are back, we will really move into our winter quarters. I forgot to say regarding the new cellar that the work on everything having to do with the other rooms is going to begin shortly. The architect of the house had a long meeting with the architect of no. 23, for it seems that there are very complicated questions about the wall in between. Happily, we didn t take it inside. But I will be content when our rooms upstairs are also finished. And that s all for today. Our journal is about to end, for your return is near. For me, your letters were a great pleasure every morning and I am happy to think that mine followed you everywhere, reminding you that the house was waiting for you and that you have an old and good friend there who loves you and in spite of everything dreams of your happiness as if it were his own. Monsieur Din just made me rage. He had stayed under... and I looked for him everywhere. I told him you were about to return, and I think he understood...". The following day, on the 20th, Zola writes: "This morning I received your letter in which you fixed your return for Monday. If thus you keep this date and if you don t stay in Rome until the Consistory, this letter is the last you will be able to receive in Rome, as it will arrive Friday morning and you should be leaving on Friday evening, according to the data you gave me. Thus, I am embarrassed as to an address for the letter I ll write you this evening and which will depart tomorrow. I m going to await your letter of tomorrow, and I ll make my decision if you have stuck to yours. In this case, this letter would be the last which I would send you to Rome, and I would address the one this evening to Turin, general delivery. By the way, I think Monday is an excellent date for your return"..

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Zola, Emile

French writer (1840-1902). Autograph letter signed. Paris. 4to (210:133 mm). 2 pp.
$ 10,251 / 8.500 € (59722/BN44234)

In French, to an unidentified friend: "[...] It seems that my wife missed you when she passed through Aix. We should have written you; but this voyage wasn t decided on until right at the last moment; and my wife thought she would always find you. What does she write me? That you complain about me because I am not answering your letters? If that were so I would have to be excused, because I am truly a poor man, burdened down with work and whose head is getting impassive. But truly, I am an innocent criminal, for I don't recall having received a single letter from you that I didn't answer.

Let's pass the...sponge, shall we? My wife, who is impassioned of Rome, had a crazy desire to return there. [As for] me, I stayed [here] at my work. My Rome is tough going for me; and besides that, nothing exists which can totally absorb me. It will start appearing in The Journal toward December 20th; but you won't have the volume [the work in book form] until the first days of May. I have my pardon, don't I? And I send you the most affectionate of presses of the hand". - Won over to social humanitarianism toward the latter part of his life, Zola wrote the cycle, "Les Trois Villes", which no longer reflected a naturalistic perspective. When Zola wrote this letter, he had already published "Lourdes", the first novel in the trilogy and was still working on its sequel, "Rome", which would later be followed by "Paris". He had, the year before, visited the Italian capital to research for the novel, and had returned to Paris with voluminous notes about what he saw and heard. Madame Zola, who had accompanied him on this excursion to Italy, took more pleasure in the trip than he did. She found it easier here than in France to bask in his reflected glory, and she could imagine that Roman society was ignorant of the double life he was leading, whereas she was sure that all her friends in Paris knew. After this first visit she returned regularly on her own for several years running; it was an arrangement that allowed the estranged couple a semi-separation acceptable according to the conventions of the time..

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Zola, Emile

French writer (1840-1902). Autograph letter signed. Paris. 8vo. 1 p.
$ 5,427 / 4.500 € (59724/BN44236)

In French, to an unidentified artist. Zola advises his correspondent to speak directly with his publisher, M. Charpentier, about his drawings because "I have very little time and prefer not to become involved in this question of illustrations. I have always thought that the best thing to do is to leave an artist free to interpret a book, as he likes. Zola adds that he does not intend to write a novel about the 1870 war for another two years". - The drawings to which Zola refers were probably meant to illustrate his novel Le Rêve, an edition of which was published in 1892 with illustrations by Carlos Schwabe and Lucien Métivet.

Zola s novel about the 1870 war, La Débâcle, was also published in 1892..

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Zola, Emile

French writer (1840-1902). Autograph letter signed. Médan. 8vo. 1½ pp.
$ 7,839 / 6.500 € (59725/BN44237)

In French: "I have had nothing but trouble over this translating business, and I regret, as do you, that we have found ourselves together in such circumstances. I was wrong, after many miscarriages, to think it possible to do business in America. It's just one more lesson, that s all. You are not personally to blame for all this, and I beg you to accept my most sincere best wishes". - In general, American critics seemed to approach Zola with a great deal of uncertainty. The artistic quality of his work was obvious, and they could not disregard his importance as a leader of Naturalism; but they feared the forcefulness of his vocabulary and the morality of his observations.

Because of this fear, American translators tended to abridge, omit passages from, and otherwise sanitize the more realistic or sensual novels, such as L'Assommoir, Germinal and La Terre. La Terre was published in France a few months before Zola wrote the present letter..

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Zola, Emile

French writer (1840-1902). Autograph letter signed. Médan. 8vo. 2 pp.
$ 4,824 / 4.000 € (59726/BN44238)

In French, to an unidentified writer: "I must thank you a thousand times for your very kind article. A person living in Berlin has sent me a translation of it and I have been particularly pleased about all the good you said of my work. Up to now Germany had not spoiled me and that is the reason why your study was so agreeable to me as I hope it will shed some light on me in showing that I am not as dark as they believe. I have the honor of addressing you here, and enclose the picture you asked of me".

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Zola, Emile

French writer (1840-1902). Autograph letter signed. Médan. 8vo. 2 pp.
$ 4,824 / 4.000 € (59727/BN44239)

In French, on mourning stationery, to a close colleague: "Upon relocating myself in the country, I took a portfolio of your letters, to which the bustle of Paris would not permit me to respond. In short, thank you for your good literary sympathy, thank you for all the pages, which I have read with great interest". - Mounting remnants at foot of second page.

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Zola, Emile

Eigenh. Brief mit U.
Autograph ist nicht mehr verfügbar

To an unnamed recipient: "Je vous autorise volontiers à traduire en allemand, à publier et à faire jouer mes deux pièces: les Heritiers Rabourdin et le Bouton de rose [...]". - Slightly creased.


Zola, Emile

Eigenh. Brief mit U.
Autograph ist nicht mehr verfügbar

To a writer, on an appointment: „[...] Comme je veux vous éviter le voyage de Médan, très pénible en cette saison de pluies, le mieux serait que vous venir me serrer la main samedi prochain, 27, à mon domicile de Paris, où je serai en passant. Venez à dix heures du matin [...]“. - Slightly browned.


Zola, Emile

Autograph letter signed.
Autograph ist nicht mehr verfügbar

In French, an important letter from the great French novelist to his young English admirer, George Moore, translator of two of Zola s novels and already the author of several articles introducing the work of Zola to the English public: "My dear colleague, I owed you a letter for some time when I received the enclosed yesterday obviously an error and I'm sending it back to you. My opinion is that you aren t putting enough pressure on Madame Derosne, for it would be excellent if the novel were serialized. On the other hand, I'm so overwhelmed at the moment that I couldn't deal with your Preface in the way I'd like. Be patient, then, a little. I received your article on L'Oeuvre; but you know my ignorance, I can only thank you a thousand times. Certain that this is among the friendliest of articles. So much the better if you're happy with your next book. The modern English novel needs you very much right now, and you know that I have always predicted your triumph. I myself am very late with L'Oeuvre which should appear in Gil Blas starting the December 26, and I don't know how I'm going manage to be ready on time. Maybe you've been following this idiotic affair over the banning of Germinal. Our French Republicans are all a bunch of little Louis XIVs who aggravate despotism by persecuting Literature. Bien à vous et bon courage, bon succès". - A remarkable letter from Zola to his English counterpart, George Moore. At the time of Zola's letter, Moore had already translated two of Zola's novels: "Piping Hot" ("Pot-Bouille"), 1885, and "The Rush for the Spoil" ("La Curee"), 1886 (but probably completed before November, 1885). Moore had also written several articles on Zola for periodicals. As early as 1881 he wrote "A Visit to M. Zola" for the St. James Gazette, 26 May; an unsigned interview called "Topics of the Day by Heroes of the Hour: My New Novel by Emile Zola" for the Pall Mall Gazette, 3 May; and a review of "L'Oeuvre, Mr. Zola's New Work" in The Bat, 10 November. It is this article that Zola had just received from Moore. Zola's derisive remarks on the recent censorship of his great novel "Germinal" undoubtedly struck a resonant chord with Moore, who himself had his problems with censorship. An important letter at an extraordinary moment in the career of the founder of Naturalism, whose influence on modern English, and, more particularly, American literature, has been profound. - Very slight soiling.