Benjamin, Walter (1892 – 1940)
A rare letter by Walter Benjamin
A rare autograph letter signed by Walter Benjamin, 6th June 1929, written in French, and possibly addressed to French author, André Gide. In full, “My dear friend, I am truly sorry that it has taken me so long to get the attached note (no longer present) published. What I find especially upsetting is that the publisher could not figure out a way to publish the beautiful picture you sent me. Allow me, dear friend, to keep it for myself. It would make me very happy if you could get a translation of the ‘portrait’ I wrote of you and of your work.
Please believe me that when I wrote it, as well as at other times, I remembered how you welcomed me in your home and in so many other places, and what a pure and precious experience of the ‘sweetness’ of France that was. I shall be in Paris, and this time I mean it, in August, and I’ll be sure to come by and shake your hand. Walter Benjamin”. Benjamin had published an essay on Gide (‘Conversations with André Gide’) the previous year. Letters by Benjamin are of the utmost rarity.