W. B. Yeats and George Yeats: The Letters.

Saddlemyer, Ann (ed.).

Picture of W. B. Yeats and George Yeats: The Letters.
The effect of reading the whole correspondence here between George Years and her husband is to bring vividly to life a long relationship. We are left not just with a powerful joint portrait of the poet and his wife, but with a real sense of the worlds in which they moved. We also get a fascinating insight into Yeats's compositional methods. The quality of the editor's annotation is remarkable.


SKU: 9780198184386


During the twenty-two years of their married life, W. B. and George Yeats corresponded regularly and fully whenever they were apart. They discussed his writing and other projects, their family and friends, and the social, artistic, and political scene in Ireland and the United Kingdom in far more detail than with anyone else. Both were splendid and enchanting storytellers. This edition includes 149 letters from George, 436 from W. B., and 29 written to their children. Anne, who lived at home, preserved 22 from her father and several important ones from her mother; when both her parents were away. The letters include fascinating drafts of poems, statements of belief, candid descriptions of people and events, and in some cases offer biographical and historical corrections to the popular narrative of Yeats's life. Like Oscar Wilde, Yeats frequently practised a phrase or an anecdote to provide the best effect in his correspondence. And not for nothing would he write to his wife, 'you are much the best letter writer I know, or have known'. The letters between them not only tell the story of the marriage of two minds and the world they created, but also illuminate how Yeats worked on his writing and reveal a refreshing image of the poet as a family man.

Book Details

Author Saddlemyer, Ann (ed.).
Format HC
Publisher Oxford University Press
Imprint Oxford University Press
Number of Pages 638
Illustrations Numerous black-and-white photographs
Publish Date 17/03/2011
Catalogue BI001
Catalogue book number 461