THE TIMES DECEAS'D. The Rare Book Department of the Times Bookshop in the 1960's.

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THE TIMES DECEAS'D. The Rare Book Department of the Times Bookshop in the 1960's.
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Place Published: York Beach, Maine
Publisher: The Teitan Press.
Date Published:
Edition: First American Edition
Binding: Hardcover
Condition: Fine in Dust Jacket
Book Id: 309819

Description

First Printing of this new edition. Octavo, original buff cloth titled on spine. 123 pp, black and white frontispiece & 16 pages of photographic illustrations. Issued in a limited edition of 500 numbered copies, of which the first 100 copies were signed by the author on a special bookplate affixed to the front endpaper, this being copy No. 40, Signed by the author. A fine copy in a fine dust jacket, as issued.

Comments

¶ Under Timothy d'Arch Smith's guidance the rare books department of The Times Bookshop became the place to go for unusual, eccentric, and censured books in 1960s London. In its cluttered shelves, the works of fin de siècle decadents and the poetry of their "Uranian" successors jostled for shelf-space with the literature of the occult and other yet more dubious tomes. Ancient texts on witch-hunting, manuscripts by Frederick Hockley, handsome quartos by that most peculiar Reverend gentleman Montague Summers, could be found alongside exquisite limited editions of works by the then-unmentionable Aleister Crowley. Predictably, d'Arch Smith's office became a required destination for enthusiasts and scholars from all walks of life, with visitors ranging from relatively private individuals like the bibliophile and self-proclaimed practitioner of "the spagyrical arts" Gerard Heym and former Crowley disciple and afterwards occult scholar, Gerald Yorke, to the famous and celebrated, such as the Beatles. The exotic "Countess" Tamara Bourkoun, who headed her own offshoot of the Golden Dawn magical fraternity, provided d'Arch Smith with a personal pathway into Hermetic practice. In 'The Times Deceas'd' Timothy d'Arch Smith writes engagingly and affectionately of all these characters, and the many others: customers and colleagues, literary luminaries and low-lifes and, of course, the often shady denizens of the occult fringe. These reminiscences and anecdotes are enlivened by fascinating snippets of bibliophilic and historical detail, for d'Arch Smith is well known as a bibliographer and scholar par excellence in his chosen fields. As the title suggests, The Times Bookshop is no longer with us, but it lives on, larger than ever, in this delightful memoir. The The Times Deceas'd was first published in England in a very small edition in 2003. The text of this new Teitan Press edition has been corrected by the author, and includes numerous previously-unpublished illustrations.


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