A.E. [George Russell] Vale & Other Poems. New York: The Macmillan Company, 1931. pp. viii, 50. Reddish brown cloth, title on printed labels on upper cover and spine. With a magnificent crayon drawing by AE of a coastal scene with a mountain, tree and sea in the background on titlepage, signed and initialled by AE. Some browning to endpapers. A fine copy in repaired dust jacket. An exceptionally rare copy with original drawing.
George Russell (1867-1935) was born in Lurgan, County Armagh, where his father was a book-keeper. The family moved to Dublin, and George attended the Metropolitan School of Art, where W.B. Yeats was a classmate and became a lifelong friend. He became interested in rural co-operation, and divided his time between organisation, poetry and painting. He also edited the Irish Homestead, organ of the Irish Agricultural Organisation Society, and later his own weekly journal the Irish Statesman. A pacifist and mystic, much influenced by Hindu spirituality, he wrote several powerful essays during the great Dublin strike of 1913 in defence of the rights of labour.
A delightful item. AE’s drawing is in excellent condition.