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Ulysses by James Joyce will be published in the Autumn of 1921 by 'Shakespeare and Company' Sylvia Beach, 21, Rue de L'Odeon, Paris - VI

Prospectus: Ulysses by James Joyce will be published in the autumn of 1921 by... Paris: Shakespeare and Company [1921].
Order form laid in.
Call Number: (RARE) PR 6019 .O9 U748x 1921
Special Collections, Golda Meir Library

When Joyce arrived in Paris with his weighty manuscript in 1920, he held out little hope of seeing the controversial work published. American Sylvia Beach, proprietor of Shakespeare and Company, a Parisian English-language bookstore and lending library, offered to publish the manuscript following the withdrawal of offers by American houses B.W. Huebsch and Boni & Liveright. Joyce accepted, and Beach wrote, "I thought it rash of him to entrust his Great Ulysses to such a funny little publisher. But he seemed delighted, and so was I... Undeterred by lack of capital, experience, and all the other requisites of a publisher, I went right ahead with Ulysses." Sylvia Beach released a prospectus promising to publish Ulysses "complete as written."

Joyce rejected The Little Review serialization as basis for a first edition, and the only available manuscript was a spare carbon typescript that did not include the many revisions Joyce had added to other copies. Joyce feverishly reworked the carbon to make it consistent with the two already circulating. Joyce also added over 1/3 additional text to the page proofs. Printer Maurice Darantiere of Dijon and his 26 non-anglophone typesetters were forced to repeatedly reset the plates to accommodate the additional quarter-of-a-million words, committing errors at each resetting. Sylvia Beach estimated one to six errors per page in the first edition. Her promise to publish a definitive edition had turned out to be a difficult proposition.


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Prepared by Christopher Barth, Virginia Haas, and Sarah McDaniel