Thursday, February 26, 2009

The Attack on St Winefride's Well - Fredrick Rolfe

Phew! There are some projects which feel like they are never going to end and this, for me, has been one of them. I'm very proud to say though that my new edition of Rolfe's, The Attack on St Winefride's Well is now done and the anouncement email has gone out and the orders are beginning to come in...
It has taken over a year to do the research for the introduction, I have had to source and use new materials, the casebound part of the edition is larger than I am used to doing, the size and shape is slightly different to anything I have created before... on the whole it's been something of a learning curve but I'm very pleased with the result and here's hoping there'll be a slew of happy customers too.

The blurb is below. If you are not on my mailing list and would like details of how to lay hands on a copy then please simply drop me an email...

We are delighted to anounce the first publication since 1898 of The Attack on St Winefride's Well by Frederick Rolfe.

In 1895 there arrived in the small Welsh town of Holywell in Flintshire, a former school-teacher, sometime artist, photographer and writer, called Frederick Rolfe. Rolfe would later become known as Baron Corvo and gain lasting fame as a writer of fantasy and the fantastic. His time in Holywell was marked by his attatchment to the Shrine of St Winefride in the town, which is built over an ancient spring. Rolfe painted banners, edited a Catholic magazine, fought with Protestants and with the Catholic clergy and ended his time in the town in the workhouse. All this in only four years residence. Right at the very end of this period a proposal was made to use St Winefride's Well as a source for bottled table water and, understandably, the Catholics of the town were upset by this. Rolfe wrote a pamphlet in typically ebulliant style railing against the scheme and creating a scathing satire against the local town authorities. He published it out of the same office as the Catholic magazine for which he worked.
Only two copies have ever been discovered of this rarest of all Corvine pieces. It is our hope that, with a long introduction by Callum James representing over a year's research into Rolfe's time in Holywell, that this publication will fill a gap long left empty on the shelves of every Rolfe collector and will also add to the local history of the area. This edition also includes the first publication since their original appearance of two long letters Rolfe wrote to newspapers at the time as well as having, for a frontispiece a previously unpublished photograph attributed to Rolfe.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

It is spectacular, worth every penny! (I got mine today.)

-Jim D.

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