Harry Ransom CenterThe University of Texas at Austin

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Mercier and Camier

Manuscripts | Publications | Reviews


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Two extracts from “Mercier and Camier” entitled “Madden” and “Umbrella” in Spectrum, Vol. IV, No. 1, Winter 1960.

Under “Contributors’ Notes,” the editors have written: “Our publication of two translated extracts marks the first appearance of any of Mercier and Camier in any form. Mr. Beckett is in no way responsible for the translations but has generously sanctioned their use.”

Beckett’s autograph signature appears at the beginning of the extracts.


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First edition of Mercier et Camier (Paris: Les Editions de Minuit, 1970). One of 99 numbered large-paper copies on pur fil Lafuma. Inscribed by Beckett on the half-title to John Kobler, June 1971.


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First English edition of Mercier and Camier, translated from the French by the author (London: Calder and Boyars, 1974).

Christopher Ricks noted in his review in the Sunday Times (13 October 1974) some key differences between the French original and Beckett’s translation of the work into English: “And here now is his witty vigilant translation of it—or rather, re-creation, since he has tightened it, given much of it a new tone, and cut out a great deal. (Including some of the most Beckettish preoccupations, such as a quotation from Dante and a reference to Sordello.)”

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First American edition of Mercier and Camier, translated from the French by the author (New York: Grove Press, 1974).