by garm on 2012/7/29 7:39:20
On the topic of Mr Brown and the rare books dept. of Blackwell's - (see my thread on the butcher of Abingdon Road) - I'd taken a few items along to 'show and tell'. Mr Brown was particularly interested to see my copy of Tolkien's 'The Reeve's Tale as recited at the Summer Diversions, Oxford 1939'. I told him that someone had pencilled on the front, 'H.Dyson's copy', but someone at the dealer I'd bought it from had rubbed it out. I don't know why.
Mr Brown didn't know why, either - it was he who'd written that on the front of the pamphlet, because it was he who'd bought it from Dyson's estate, many years ago. A great part of the value of this item lies in the fact that it was once owned by Tolkien's friend and fellow Inkling; and Mr. Brown seemed at a loss as to why his note had been erased. So when I say, 'Shucks!' - it's because that bit of valuable information has been lost - well, almost.
On the other hand; I suppose I'd have had to pay more if the dealer I'd bought it from knew that.
*Just think; old Hugo himself, holding this very copy as Tolkien recited Chaucer at the Summer diversions, all those years ago: now, that's something!