The James Joyce - Paul Léon Papers, 1930-1940.
Following the expiration of the fifty year period stipulated by Paul Léon the Joyce-Léon Papers were opened in the National Library of Ireland. The nineteen envelopes were found to contain correspondence and other papers in a rough chronological order. The papers fell into five main groups: the correspondence of James Joyce and Paul Léon, the correspondence of James Joyce and Paul Léon with Harriet Shaw Weaver, general correspondence with Joyce's friends, acquaintances and admirers, business correspondence with his solicitors, agents and publishers and miscellaneous personal and household accounts. - Patricia Donlon, Foreword to The James Joyce Paul Léon Papers : a catalogue / Catherine Fahy. - Dublin : National Library of Ireland.
|Main Author:||Joyce, James, 1882-1941.|
The most interesting and important group of papers are the two hundred and twenty odd letters exchanged between Joyce and Léon. Most of these letters were written when Joyce was away from Paris. when Joyce was at home Léon talked with him either in person or by telephone and received instructions daily although there were periods when Léon complained to Miss Weaver that he saw Mr Joyce seldom and that Mr Joyce refused to tell him what he wanted. The major themes running through these letters and indeed through the entire collection are the major themes of the last decade of Joyce's life: his efforts to get Ulysses published in England and in America and to finish and publish Finnegans Wake, his money worries, his concern for his daughter Lucia and his efforts to secure publication of her illuminated letters of lettrines, and his own ill health. Where Léon's side of the correspondence survives his letters are in the form of carbon typescripts which he kept intermittently. - Patricia Donlon, Foreword to The James Joyce Paul Léon Papers : a catalogue / Catherine Fahy. - Dublin : National Library of Ireland.
Joyce's publishers, solicitors and friends were all under instructions to communicate with him through Léon at Léon's apartment on 27 rue Casimir-Périer. This included at times even Miss Weaver who came to rely on Paul Léon to keep her in touch with the Joyces. The collection includes two hundred and thirteen letters exchanged between Miss Weaver and Léon, the letters from Leon again surviving in the form of carbon typescripts, though some of the originals can be found in the collection of Harriet Shaw Weaver papers held by the Manuscripts Department of the British Library. - Patricia Donlon, Foreword to The James Joyce Paul Léon Papers : a catalogue / Catherine Fahy. - Dublin : National Library of Ireland.
The files of business correspondence are extensive. Léon was fairly systematic in keeping carbons of business letters so the files read straight through and gave a detailed picture of the sometimes complex and acrimonious negotiations leading to the American and English publication of both Ulysses and Finnegans Wake. In describing the letters an attempt has been made to indicate as fully as possible their subject matter rather than reproduce their style. This is not always easy as Léon's manner of expressing himself tended to be quite convoluted. Any of his letters may contain passages that were dictated or written directly by Joyce as well as paraphrases of Joyce's instructions and Léon's own opinions and interpretations. All of the letters written by Léon are carbon typescript copies unless otherwise specified and he nearly always wrote from his Paris address at 27 rue Casimir-Périer. Each item described consists of one page only unless otherwise specified. - Patricia Donlon, Foreword to The James Joyce Paul Léon Papers : a catalogue / Catherine Fahy. - Dublin : National Library of Ireland.
This collection has been partially digitised and catalogued online. Items digitised and catalogued include correspondence between James Joyce and Paul Léon and other letters from James Joyce including letters in the handwriting of James Joyce but for signature by Paul Léon and annotations and draft replies by James Joyce on letters received. The remainder of the collection has not been catalogued for copyright or other reasons. A full list and description of this collection can be found in The James Joyce Paul Léon Papers : a catalogue by Catherine Fahy. The entire collection is also available on microfiche in the Department of Manuscripts.
The collection of papers deposited with the Library in accordance with Paul Léon's instructions did not include any letters from Nora Barnacle Joyce to James Joyce or from him to her.
Available on microfiche;
Related Materials: Department of Manuscripts, National Library of Ireland. There is another collection of James Joyce papers held in the Department of Manuscripts, The Joyce Papers 2002 (Collection List No. 68). This collection consists primarily of Joyce's manuscripts, notebooks and workbooks including his early material, drafts etc. of parts of Ulysses and proffs etc. for Finnegan's Wake;
Related Materials: Department of Manuscripts, National Library of Ireland. There is another collection of Paul Léon papers held in the Department of Manuscripts, The Papers of Paul and Lucie Léon (Collection List No. 70). This collection consists largely of research papers and correspondence of Paul Léon, fashion journalism and general correspondence of Lucie Léon (or Noel), manuscripts, inventories of materials, correspondence and miscellaneous documents belonging to Paul and Lucie Léon relating to their connections with James Joyce;
James Joyce (1882-1941) was born in Dublin on 2 February 1882. Apart from some months spent in Paris in late 1902 and early 1903, he lived for the most part in Ireland until he reached the age of 22. In June of 1904, however, he met the Galway woman with whom he would spend the rest of his life, Nora Barnacle, then working in Finn's hotel in Dublin. By October they had resolved to leave Ireland together and sailed away to make a new life on continental Europe. Thereafter, Joyce spent his life between various European cities, most notably the three that are listed after the conclusion of the final episode of Ulysses – Trieste, Zurich and Paris. Between his departure from Ireland with Nora at the end of 1904 and his death in 1941, Joyce returned to Dublin on only a few occasions and not at all after 1912. – Preface to A Joycean Scrapbook : From the National Library of Ireland / compiled by Katherine McSharry. Dublin: National Library of Ireland, 2004.
Paul Léon (1893-1942?) was a Russian emigré Jew, a widely read and cultivated man who fled from Russia in 1918 after the Revolution. He and Joyce met in Paris in 1928 and quickly became friends. Léon, who had considerable expertise in languages and law as well as philosophy and sociology, took the place of Sylvia Beach in dealing with Joyce's business affairs. He corresponded with publishers and agents, drew up contracts and looked after Joyce's financial interests. He also dealt with confidential family matters and acted as intermediary between Joyce and many of his friends, especially Harriet Shaw Weaver, Joyce's patron, who came to rely on Léon to keep her in touch with the Joyce family. Following Joyce's death, Léon donated the papers in his possession relating to Joyce to the National Library of Ireland under a fifty year seal. - The James Joyce Paul Léon Papers : a catalogue / Catherine Fahy. - Dublin : National Library of Ireland.
Citations/References: The James Joyce Paul Léon Papers : a catalogue / Catherine Fahy. - Dublin : National Library of Ireland
Indexes: Finding Aid Available: The James Joyce Paul Léon Papers : a catalogue / Catherine Fahy. - Dublin : National Library of Ireland
I. Correspondence of James Joyce and Paul Léon. II. Correspondence of James Joyce and Paul Léon with Harriet Shaw Weaver. III. General correspondence of James Joyce and Paul Léon with family, friends and admirers. IV. Miscellaneous letters mainly from admirers, autograph hunters, book collectors and students. V. Business correspondence: solicitor and agent, Monro Saw & Co. and James B. Plinker & Sons. VI. Business correspondence: publishers, broadcasters etc. VII. Business correspondence: film proposals, translation rights, permissions, requests for contributions. VII. Manuscript and typescript drafts of poems and of pages from Work in Progress, miscellaneous proofs. IX. Newsclippings. X. Miscellaneous printed material. XI. Personal expenses of James Joyce and of the Joyce family. XII. Residences, removal and household expenses, insurance. XIII. Bank accounts, postage and money order receipts, taxes. XIV. Medical bills and receipts of Lucia Joyce. XV. Photographs. XVI. Miscellaneous.
The James Joyce-Paul Léon Papers were donated to the National Library of Ireland by Mr. Paul Léon in 1941 and held under a fifty year seal. These papers were made available to the public in April 1922.