Essays for Richard Ellmann

Essays for Richard Ellmann: Omnium Gatherum

Susan Dick
Declan Kiberd
Dougald McMillan
Joseph Ronsley
Copyright Date: 1989
Pages: 496
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  • Book Info
    Essays for Richard Ellmann
    Book Description:

    Ellmann's sensitivity to what it meant to be an artist shaped his work from the outset: "The life of an artist ... differs from the lives of other persons in that its events are becoming artistic sources even as they command his present attention. Instead of allowing each day, pushed back by the next, to lapse into imprecise memory, he shapes again the experiences which have shaped him."

    eISBN: 978-0-7735-6207-3
    Subjects: Language & Literature

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-viii)
  3. Photographs
    (pp. ix-x)
  4. Preface
    (pp. xi-xii)
    Joseph Ronsley
  5. INTRODUCTION. Richard Ellmann: The Critic as Artist.
    (pp. xiii-xx)
    Susan Dick, Declan Kiberd, Dougald McMillan and Joseph Ronsley

    It is the destiny of original minds to seem less and less remarkable in direct proportion to their success in changing conventional ideas. A moment is reached when nobody can remember what life was like before they came upon the scene. People start to quote their words without always recollecting the source, and at this point the original mind seems no longer to evoke a person but a whole climate of opinion.

    Such a mind was Richard Ellmann’s. It is not true that he invented the ‘Modern Tradition’—it just sometimes seems as if he had. By now the poetry...

  6. ‘Heroic Work, Heroic Being’: Avoid the Valedictory.
    (pp. 1-3)
    Sylvan Schendler

    Richard Ellmann completedSamuel Beckett: Nayman of Noland, in time for Beckett’s eightieth birthday, on April 13, 1986. He may have been conscious of moderate difficulty in enunciation when reading the essay at the Library of Congress. During the winter at Oxford his voice had been unaccountably hoarse for too long. Before that, he had fallen twice when jogging. In June, when he travelled to McGill for an honorary degree, his speech was slurred. He was having difficulty with his posture.

    Uncertain of the reason for his deterioration, he and Mary could still be amused when they remembered Captain Carpenter...

  7. Ellmann’s Road to Xanadu.
    (pp. 4-12)
    Ellsworth Mason

    In days of yore, when the Ivy League was still made of solid ivy, and before the Second World War shattered forever what was a very stable world, there lived in the nooks of Yale’s English department three remarkable graduate students—William K. Wimsatt, Norman Holmes Pearson, and Richard Ellmann. Wimsatt kept very much to himself, bent hard on swiftly upgrading his prep school teaching status, and just missing by a hair compiling a bibliography of Colley Gibber as his dissertation. He had yet to emerge with curved beak and great wings flapping. Norman Pearson was by no means unlettered....

  8. With Dick in Dublin, 1946.
    (pp. 13-22)
    John V. Kelleher

    It bothers me that I don’t remember how we met or who introduced us, though I presume it was some Yale friend of his, then a graduate student at Harvard, who knew that we both intended to go to Ireland as soon as we could. Anyway, we did meet in the spring of 1946 and arranged to travel together.

    We left New York in late May, I think, and it was on shipboard that I really got to know Dick and to appreciate his charm and tact. The old Cunarder on which we sailed was unconverted from its wartime role...

  9. Richard Ellmann’s Michaux: A Publisher’s Recollections.
    (pp. 23-28)
    James Laughlin

    One of the ornaments of the New Directions list in the early Fifties was Richard Ellmann’s translations ofThe Selected Writings of Henri Michaux(1951).¹ At that time, although Michaux had been writing for over twenty years and had an established reputation in France, his work was scarcely known in the United States except through a few translations in small magazines. In 1949, New Directions had published Sylvia Beach’s translation of Michaux’sA Barbarian in Asia, the ironic and highly diverting account of his travels in the Far East as a young man, but that did not reach much of...

  10. Richard Ellmann and Film Collaboration.
    (pp. 29-30)
    Seán Ó Mórdha

    As I think of Richard Ellmann at the end of this year of sadness for the Ellmann family, his monumental study of Oscar Wilde has scored a most wonderful critical and commercial success. Readers and critics alike have seen his new biography as the book of the year, perhaps, of the decade. Posthumously, Richard Ellmann has hit the jackpot sending Oscar forth triumphantly from the debris of the Victorian nineties to his rightful place as the first of the moderns.

    My great film adventure with Dick Ellmann began in 1981 as I was preparing a documentary profile of James Joyce...

  11. The Oscar Wilde Playing Cards.
    (pp. 31-32)
    Rosita Fanto

    Juggling between fiction and reality, Richard Ellmann could transform even predictable schmalz into sophisticated entertainment. ‘Clever’, he said, delighted with the drawings. We went to his study in Wolfson College where we started on the Odyssey of the Oscar Wilde Playing Cards. We both were intoxicated by the novelty of this project—the pictorial form of a normally serious subject—and were urging each other on into a world of humorous fantasy.

    Then Dick became a voice on the long distance telephone between Oxford and Monte Carlo where I had locked myself up to concentrate on the intricate scheme he...

  12. Poems.
    (pp. 33-34)
    Andonis Decavalles
  13. Poem.
    (pp. 35-36)
    Brendan Kennelly
  14. ‘Oranges—Apples—Sugarsticks …’ Joycean Associations: An Interview with Richard Ellmann.
    (pp. 37-41)
    Christie McDonald and Richard Ellmann

    Christie McDonald: In your book,James Joyce,² you refer to one of the most widely known devices used inUlysses, the internal monologue. Could you describe how this device allows Joyce to construct character by ‘odds and ends, by minutiae’, and constitute thereby a notion of personality new to the novel as a form? If this method results in an ‘islanded’ character, one whose mind is neither tied to authorial dictates nor grounded in his context, does it not effectively prevent the reader from reaching a view of character, and the truth of that character, as a totality?

    Richard Ellmann:...

  15. A Portrait of James Joyce’s Biographer.
    (pp. 42-48)
    William K. Robertson and Richard Ellmann

    In the novelA Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, the hero, Stephen Dedalus, is about to leave Dublin—and his youth—behind to set out on a special mission. His purpose is nothing less than to form the collective conscience of his race.

    Stephen, of course, is the alter ego of his creator, James Joyce. In 1982, the centenary of Joyce’s birth, it is still open to discussion how well he accomplished Stephen’s ambitious, arrogant quest, but there is no doubt that the author has been as influential on the course of modern literature as any writer...

  16. The Concept of Modernism.
    (pp. 49-59)
    Christopher Butler

    Henry James tells us in his Preface toThe Awkward Age(1899) that

    We are shut up wholly to cross-relations all within the action itself, no part of which is related to anything but some other part—save of course by the relation of the total to life.

    This is a suitable warning to anyone wishing to write about twentieth century ‘Modernism’. It suggests at least the appalling complexity of a subject which should bring together the concerns of artists working in all the main cities of Europe. But James ends with an assurance more typical of the nineteenth century...

  17. A Modernist Noesis.
    (pp. 60-70)
    Bruce Johnson

    In Virginia Woolf’sTo The Lighthouse, Andrew describes his father’s work to Lily Briscoe as ‘“Subject and object and the nature of reality … Think of a kitchen table then,‭” he told her, “when you’re not there”’.¹ Mr Ramsay, we later learn, has promised ‘to talk “some nonsense” to the young men of Cardiff about Locke, Hume, Berkeley, and the causes of the French Revolution’, (p. 70) Lily Briscoe, however, in a tangibly different spirit subsequently wonders while ‘sitting on the floor with her arms round Mrs Ramsay’s knees’ whether there might be a ‘device for becoming, like waters poured...

  18. Northrop Frye and the Bible.
    (pp. 71-81)
    Frank Kermode

    Northrop Frye does not practise literary criticism as most of us know it. For him, literature is a manifestation of the human plot against the inhuman—a secondary universe we make to give ourselves the possibility of accommodating ourselves to a world we never made. Like Blake, the poet he so cherishes, he constantly believes that our life in the world we never made can be made tolerable, can be transformed, by the human imagination. Like Wallace Stevens, another very congenial poet, he thinks that without our imagination version of the world—what Stevens calls amundorather than the...

  19. Poe’s Angels.
    (pp. 82-84)
    Charles A. Huttar

    By the end of the eighteenth century, with help from Voltaire and others,¹ the angels had left the universe. That enabled them to survive to the twentieth century in poetry,² but only by becoming very different beings from what they had been in the epic imaginations of Dante, Milton, and Blake. In the intervening period, which in some ways, at least, may rightly be called ‘transitional’, the figure of central significance is Edgar Allan Poe. The Enlightenment’s depopulating of the spiritual world had quickly brought on Romantic reaction: in Wordsworth, for example, who lamented the loss of a sensibility capable...

  20. Isabel Archer: The New Women as American.
    (pp. 85-103)
    Declan Kiberd

    In the expansionist economy of the nineteenth century, the American male devoted himself to mastering the machine and pursuing vast profits, while his wife became a pampered consumer of gadgets, fashions and money. The protracted intricacies of traditional courtship were not for the new generation of capitalists, who won their ladies in hasty moments snatched from their busy lives in factory or marketplace.¹ In consequence, a disastrous chasm opened between the sexes who were now doomed to lead virtually separate lives. American men were so busy earning money that they scarcely found time to experience the pleasure of spending it...

  21. Henry James, History, and ‘Story’.
    (pp. 104-121)
    Charles Feidelson

    In the midst of a rather tedious memoir of an expatriate American artist whose Roman palazzo he frequented in his early years abroad, James inserts a notable passage on what he calls the ‘sense of Rome’.¹ He is playing on the word ‘sense’. It refers both to a feeling for Rome—a spiritual impress that physical Rome itself, he says, left upon him and all his fellow-visitors—and also to the kind of meaning, and especially the kind ofintelligiblemeaning, for which this shared feeling-for-Rome was the medium. The ‘spirit of the place’, the felt presence of a long...

  22. Lytton Strachey and the Prose of Empire.
    (pp. 122-133)
    S.P. Rosenbaum

    In his influential essay ‘Two Faces of Edward’ Richard Ellmann characterized the Edwardian years as a Janus period that faced forward to modernism and backward to Victorianism.¹ His description illuminates the first book of a writer who transformed the genre in which Ellmann himself wrote so well. Lytton Strachey’s unpublished Edwardian dissertation on Warren Hastings, the first Governor General of India, is a defense of an eminent eighteenth-century imperialist written a decade or so before the biographies that so memorably depicted Victorian imperialists of one kind and another. The paradoxes of the dissertation were just the kind the author of...

  23. ‘The Writing “I” Has Vanished’: Virginia Woolf’s Last Short Fictions.
    (pp. 134-145)
    Susan Dick

    In January of 1941, Virginia and Leonard Woolf were living at Monks House in the Sussex village of Rodmell. The previous September, their London house in Mecklenburgh Square had been badly damaged during an air raid and the following month their former house at 52 Tavistock Square (on which they continued to hold the lease) was destroyed by bombs. Since the fall of 1939, when because of the war they had begun to live permanently at Monks House, the Woolfs had spent some time each fortnight in London. Now, with their Mecklenburgh Square house uninhabitable, and with constant air raids...

  24. Strange Meetings: Eliot, Pound, and Laforgue.
    (pp. 146-152)
    A. Walton Litz

    The notion of investigating once again the familiar subject of Jules Laforgue’s impact on Eliot and Pound—and the relationship between the two ‘influences’—came to me when an extremely gifted young woman from a French university attended one of my seminars on modern poetry. As I rehearsed the usual received ideas about Laforgue’s place in English and American modernism I could hear her mutter something very like a line from Yeats: ‘They say such different things at school.’ In conversations with her I discovered just how remote the Laforgues of Eliot and Pound are from the poet of the...

  25. ‘Sufficient Ground to Stand on’: Pound, Williams, and American History.
    (pp. 153-160)
    Carol H. Cantrell

    This is a revised version of a paper presented at the Conference on Politics, Economics, and Literature at Hamilton College, April 1985. Many thanks to my colleague, Ward Swinson, for numerous useful conversations about Pound and history.

    Critics of William Carlos Williams almost always refer—however grudgingly—to Ezra Pound; critics of Pound usually give Williams little notice. Though Pound’s effect on Williams is emphatic, Williams seems to have left little trace on Pound’s work.¹ Richard Avedon’s well-known photograph of the two poets² is an unforgettable depiction of an unequal relationship: Pound stands, bare-chested, confident, amused; Williams, buttoned-up, sits strained...

  26. D.H. Lawrence’s Physical Religion: The Debt to Tylor, Frobenius, and Nuttall.
    (pp. 161-166)
    Daniel J. Schneider

    The more closely one examines the works that D.H. Lawrence sought out hi his effort to develop his ‘philosophy’, the more one appreciates the use he made of the best scientific evidence available to him. His indebtedness to the anthropology of his time is a case in point. His realization that Western men and women ‘live by the spirit of destruction and of putting apart’, as he said in November of 1916, and that the egoistic mental or ideal consciousness fostered by Western civilization prevents all ‘Unanimity of Purpose’, was leading him to take a deep interest in primitive cultures...

  27. Notes on a Late Poem by Stevens.
    (pp. 167-174)
    Denis Donoghue

    The poem is ‘Of Mere Being’. Between its appearance inOpus Posthumous(1957) andThe Palm at the End of the Mind(1967), ‘In the bronze distance’ (1. 3) became ‘In the bronze decor’, on the authority of a typescript (H-4205) in the Stevens collection at the Huntington Library:

    The palm at the end of the mind,

    Beyond the last thought, rises

    In the bronze decor,

    A gold-feathered bird

    Sings in the palm, without human meaning,

    Without human feeling, a foreign song.

    You know then that it is not the reason

    That makes us happy or unhappy.

    The bird sings....

  28. The Difficult Debut of Denis Johnston’s ‘Old Lady’.
    (pp. 175-190)
    Joseph Ronsley

    Having attended school in Edinburgh, and received his baccalaureate in law from Cambridge and an LLD from Harvard, Denis Johnston returned to Dublin hi 1924. By 1925 he not only had an education and a profession, but a keen interest in the theatre as well. It was a good time to arrive in Dublin with this interest since the Abbey had only recently been released from a period of doldrums by the advent of a new playwright, Sean O’Casey, whoseShadow of a Gunman and Juno and the Paycockhad appeared during the previous two years. O’Casey, in fact, was...

  29. In Search of Horatio’s Identity (via Yeats).
    (pp. 191-203)
    R.W. Desai

    In his lines,

    There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio,

    Than are dreamt of in your philosophy,¹

    the emphasis onyourthat I believe every reader of the play imagines Hamlet to place is the point of divergence between the two men. In general, critical judgement of Horatio has regarded him as the opposite of Hamlet: he is not ‘passion’s slave’ as Hamlet recognizes himself to be in his second meeting with the Ghost² and, at the play’s end, he is a worthy narrator whom Hamlet designates to tell his story to the world.³ If, for convenience, an...

  30. Labour and Memory in the Love Poetry of W.B. Yeats.
    (pp. 204-219)
    Elizabeth Butler Cullingford

    Yeats was, as he said himself, a romantic in all things. Early in his poetic career he decided that, although he might never marry in church, he would love one woman all his life. That one woman was Maud Gonne, whom he courted from the time of their first meeting in 1889 until in 1903 she unexpectedly married someone else. After her marriage proved a failure Yeats resumed his attentions, and persisted in his devotion until 1917, when he himself married Georgie Hyde-Lees. He continued, however, to write poems about Maud Gonne. There are three points about their long drawn...

  31. W.B. Yeats and That High Horse.
    (pp. 220-233)
    Jon Stallworthy

    The case for the Prosecution has been forcefully summed up by Seamus Heaney: ‘All through his life, of course, and ever since his death, Yeats has been continually rebuked for the waywardness of his beliefs, the remoteness of his behaviour and the eccentricity of his terms of reference. Fairies first of all. Then Renaissance courts in Tuscany and Big Houses in Gal way. Then Phases of the Moon and Great Wheels. What, says the reliable citizen, is the sense of all this?’¹ The Defence might be expected to plead guilty and enter a plea of ‘diminished responsibility’ on the grounds...

  32. ‘What Can I But Enumerate Old Themes’.
    (pp. 234-252)
    Peter Kuch

    It seems customary, when charting the development of Yeats’s style, to useThe Green HelmetandResponsibilitiesto distinguish between an ‘early’ and a ‘middle’ style. It also seems customary to relate the stylistic development to the poet’s life.The Green HelmetandResponsibilitiesare rightly said to disclose a maturing poet, a man of the world whose matter and manner have been tempered by self-criticism, disappointment and conflict. The poetry, for the most part, is rightly said to be tougher, more colloquial and direct, and to be in the main a more honest confrontation with the public world than...

  33. Yeats’s Stream of Consciousness.
    (pp. 253-266)
    Terence Diggory

    The new value assigned to the condition of indeterminacy in current critical discussion extends even to literary history, last bastion of positivism. That bastion was undermined in its foundation by the disjunction of the two perspectives from which any historical moment may be viewed: the perspective, on the one hand, of what came before; on the other hand, of what came after. Thus, to Marjorie Perloff, reading in the light of Allen Ginsberg, Frank O’Hara and Ed Dorn, Yeats appears as the opponent of the ‘poetics of indeterminacy’ promoted by the experiments of Ezra Pound. On the other hand, to...

  34. Yeats: The Masker and the Masks.
    (pp. 267-279)
    James Flannery

    There can be no other cultural institution (except perhaps the whorehouse) which has supplied so many terms of colloquial abuse as the theatre. As Jonas Barish writes inThe Anti-Theatrical Prejudice:

    Most epithets derived from the arts are laudatory when applied to the other arts or to life. If one describes a landscape as ‘poetic’, or a man’s struggle with adversity as ‘epic’, or a woman’s beauty as ‘lyric’, one is using a term of praise … Similarly, terms like musical, symphonic, graphic, sculptural (orsculpturesque) are nearly always eulogistic.

    But with infrequent exceptions, terms borrowed from the theatre—theatrical,...

  35. [Illustrations]
    (pp. None)
  36. ‘Yours Affly, Dobbs’: George Yeats to Her Husband, Winter 1931-32.
    (pp. 280-303)
    Ann Saddlemyer

    ‘I am delighted’, Richard Ellmann replied when I excitedly reported the state of my research toward the biography of George Yeats. For he above all others had written warmly, sympathetically and most fully of this remarkable woman who had contributed so muck to perfection of the life and of the work during the twenty-three 23 years of Yeats’s marriage. Typically, as I recounted my adventures and voiced yet more questions, he offered advice, gentle warnings, most of all, encouragement. While Mary sat loyally nearby, her occasional remarks offering fresh insight, we laughed over some of the problems yet unsolved and...

  37. Joyce as Letter Writer.
    (pp. 304-309)
    Richard Ellmann

    Letter writing imposes its small ceremonies even upon those who disdain the medium. An audience of one requires confrontation too, and even a perfunctory message discloses a little, with what candour, modesty, or self-esteem its writer ranks himself in the world. Some accompanying hint of his appraisal of that world is bound to appear in the way he asserts or beseeches a tie with his correspondent, the degree of familiarity he takes for granted, the extent to which he solicits action or approbation, the alacrity and tenacity with which he joins issue. He may present himself in various guises: as...

  38. Joyce and Mythology.
    (pp. 310-319)
    Terry Eagleton

    The distinction between myth and history is sometimes thought to correspond roughly to one between pre-industrial and industrial society, or country and city. It seems plausible to assume some kind of relation between the closed, cyclical structures of mythological thought and the traditionalist, repetitive, season-based life and labour of pre-industrial society. Conversely, there would seem a tempting analogy between the linear, evolutionary, open-ended nature of the ‘historical’ and the typical life-rhythms of urban industrialism, where what matters is dynamic development rather than cyclical recurrence, futureoriented action rather than the ritual invocation of sacred origins. With the gradual emergence of urban...

  39. Mr Leopold Bloom and the Lost Vermeer.
    (pp. 320-332)
    Mary T. Reynolds

    ‘Martha, Mary. I saw that picture somewhere, I forget now, old master or faked for money’. (U.78; VP 5. 289).¹

    ‘Somewhere’, indeed.

    Mr Bloom is describing a painting he could not possibly have seen, Johannes Vermeer’s ‘Christ in the House of Martha and Mary’. It was discovered in Scotland in 1901, and was briefly exhibited in London before being returned to Edinburgh where it has ever since remained.² Joyce himself never saw the painting, and must have gotten his knowledge of it from a photograph. No photograph of the painting appeared in print as early as June 16, 1904; the...

  40. ‘There’s a Medium in All Things’: Joycean Readings.
    (pp. 333-350)
    Fritz Senn

    The starting point of this purely intratextual study is a misappropriation of a Joycean line. James Joyce misappropriated constantly—his own life and that of his family and friends, theOdyssey, the Mass, newspapers, Irish history, songs: they were transformed into something they had not been before. Criticism documents such mistreatments, changes that have also become themesinthe works. InA Portraitwe hear two verses of a song, and then read instantly after: ‘That was his song’.Hissong is a misappropriation, one defective line, ‘O, the geen¹ wothe botheth’ (P 72)², supplanting two of the original. The...

  41. Transition Years: James Joyce and Modernist Art.
    (pp. 351-359)
    Alison Armstrong

    In the relationship between literary art and the visual arts, various collaborations developed among editors and critics, some of whom were also poets, to promote new ideas at the heart of modernist sensibility,transition, arriving relatively late in the era of manifestoes, was a long-lived publication with an editorial stance which favoured no single ‘-ism’. Its polemics embraced a number of means for achieving new art.

    Edited by Eugene Jolas from 1927 to 1938 in Paris and New York (with a two-year hiatus in the early 30s),transitionwas, as Stuart Gilbert wrote in 1949, ‘… no “little magazine” …...

  42. ‘All That Fall’: Samuel Beckett and the Bible.
    (pp. 360-373)
    Vivian Mercier

    The National Library of Ireland Richard Irvine Best Lecture, given at the Royal Irish Academy, 11 December, 1986.

    I should begin by explaining that I don’t propose to engage in a minute analysis of Beckett’s radio play,All That Fall(BBC, January 1957), which might be described as Ireland’s sardonic answer to Dylan Thomas’sUnder Milk Wood(BBC, January 1954). The phrase is quoted in my title to remind us of a passage where Beckett, for once, makes it clear to his audience that he is quoting from the Bible. His work, as we shall see, is full of hidden...

  43. Beckett’s Recent Acivities: The Liveliness of Dead Imagination.
    (pp. 374-383)
    Daniel Albright

    It is clear that the first half of the 1980s has been one of Beckett’s periods of great creative activity, comparable to the late 1940s and the early 1960s. He has also managed to get his name into the newspapers because of his threat of a lawsuit against a performance ofEndgame(Cambridge, Massachusetts, Winter, 1984), a performance that disobeyed the stage directions in every conceivable way—instead of a stage wholly empty save for a chair, two windows, and a door, the Cambridge production presented the play inside a cross-section of forty-foot high concrete tunnel, around which Clov scrambled...

  44. The Fatal Circle: Composition and Direction of Come and Go.
    (pp. 384-393)
    Dougald McMillan

    Come and Goevolved in three stages.¹ Manuscripts and typescripts of two closely related but distinct versions preceded the composition ofCome and Goitself. The first attempt was an undated holograph on three sheets of typing paper entitled ‘Good Heavens’ (Reading University Library, MS 1227/7/16/4). In a second undated typescript of five pages designated (almost certainly provisionally) as ‘Viola, Poppy, Rose’ (Reading University Library MS 1227/7/16/5), Beckett condensed and altered this original version. Both these versions were identified by Beckett as ‘beforeCome and Go’ at the time he gave them to Reading University Library. Finally, hi three typescript...

  45. The Consolation of Art: Oscar Wilde and Dante.
    (pp. 394-401)
    Dominic Manganiello

    The works and life of Dante exercised a considerable fascination in Victorian times. Carlyle, Arnold, and Rossetti, to name a few, all felt compelled to eulogize the writer who was, in Ruskin’s words, ‘the central man of all the world’.¹ Wilde was no exception to this trend. His mother used to boast about having Dante as a noble ancestor, or so she liked to believe. To those who remained skeptical she cited her maiden name, Elgee, thought to be a corruption of Alighieri, as corroborating evidence.² Although Wilde did not draw directly on this putative genealogy, he did claim an...

  46. Wilde’s Criticism: Theory and Practice.
    (pp. 402-406)
    Jonathan Culler

    In The Critic as Artist as Wilde’, Richard Ellmann writes,

    In protesting the independence of criticism, Wilde sounds like an ancestral Northrop Frye or Roland Barthes. These portentous comparisons do indeed claim virtue by association, and such claims may be broadened. André Gide found Nietzsche less exciting because he had read Wilde, and Thomas Mann in one of his last essays remarks almost with chagrin on how many of Nietzsche’s aphorisms might have been expressed by Wilde, and how many of Wilde’s by Nietzsche. What I think can be urged for Wilde, then, is that for his own reasons and...

  47. Playing in Earnest.
    (pp. 407-424)
    Thomas R. Whitaker

    ‘For me’, says Gwendolen Fairfax to her nervous suitor, ‘you have always had an irresistible fascination.’ And why? ‘We live, as I hope you know, Mr Worthing, in an age of ideals. The fact is constantly mentioned in the more expensive monthly magazines, and has reached the provincial pulpits, I am told; and my ideal has always been to love some one of the name of Ernest.’ That, of course, is from Wilde’s masterpiece of 1895. Almost eighty years later Stoppard’sTravestieshas Old Carr recall or imagine another Gwendolen who gave the same assurance to Tristan Tzara in Zurich...

  48. Richard Ellmann: A Chronology
    (pp. 425-426)
  49. Richard Ellmann: A Bibliography
    (pp. 427-440)
    Lonnie Weatherby and Elaine Yarosky
  50. Notes
    (pp. 441-474)
  51. Notes on Contributors
    (pp. 475-480)
  52. Index
    (pp. 481-499)