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Lot 122: Limited Edition Signed by Antoine de Saint Exupery, Author of The Little Prince
Presidential Letters, Free Franks & Speeches: Washington to Bush + Important Autographs in History, Science & the Arts
26 October 2016
New York, NY, USALive Auction
Description: Signed by the Author of The Little Prince, Antoine de Saint Exupery********** SAINT EXUPERY, ANTOINE DE. (1900-1944). French aviator and author best known for The Little Prince and Wind, Sand, and Stars. Signed book. (“Antoine de Saint Exupery”). 306pp. 8vo. [New York, 1939]. A copy of the signed limited edition (89/500) of Wind, Sand and Stars, published by Reynal & Hitchcock. ********** An impoverished aristocrat, Saint Exupery pioneered international postal flights, first in Africa and, later, in South America. As a manager for the French company Aéropostale, he regularly negotiated the release of downed pilots who were captured by Moors, for which he was awarded the Legion of Honor. In 1926, his first novella, The Aviator, was published in a magazine and his first book, Southern Mail, appeared in 1929 followed by Night Flight in 1931, for which he was awarded the Prix Femina. In 1939, he published Wind, Sand and Stars, a memoir that recounts his life at Aéropostale, including the 1935 plane crash in the Sahara Desert and his dramatic rescue by a passing Bedouin. The French edition was published in February 1939 and the English translation, which differed substantially from the original, appeared in the U.S. later that year. ********** Following Germany’s 1940 invasion of France, Saint Exupery again took to the skies, fighting with the French Air Force before France’s capitulation prompted him to seek exile in the United States. Two weeks after his arrival in New York he accepted the National Book Award for Wind, Sand and Stars, which had been bestowed upon him the previous year. He remained in New York until 1943, a period during which he authored Flight to Arras, Letter to a Hostage and The Little Prince. Despite exceeding the age limit by eight years, Saint Exupery convinced General Eisenhower to authorize an exemption allowing him to fly with an American military convoy to Algiers where he joined the Free French Air Force in the spring of 1943. His plane disappeared into the Mediterranean Sea the following July during a reconnaissance mission over the Rhone Valley. Much speculation surrounded the disappearance of France’s literary hero until 1998 when his identity bracelet was found by a fisherman. In 2000, remains of his aircraft were located nearby, confirming that his plane had crashed south of Marseilles. ********** Lacking the dust jacket. With wear to the cover and spine including some chipping of the tail. The inside is clean and tight. In very good condition.