Mark Twain to French Jewish Writer Marcel Schwob: "I Do Commit Crimes, But They Are Not of This Grade"

November 4, 1888

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Mark Twain to French Jewish Writer Marcel Schwob: "I Do Commit Crimes, But They Are Not of This Grade"
Autograph Letter Signed
1 page | SMC 118

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      Background

      Here Twain denounces a French translation of a story he did not write, pronouncing it a “singularly unpleasant production.” He assures Schwob that he has been deceived: “I do commit crimes,” he writes, “ but they are not of this grade.”


      Autograph Letter Signed, 1 page, on his monogrammed letterhead, duodecimo, Hartford, November 4, 1888. To (Mayer Andre) Marcel Schwob in Paris. With autograph envelope bearing his printed names and address in upper left corner.

      Accompanied by a Printed Manuscript, in French, entitled "Terrifiante Historie de mes Dents," purportedly by Samuel Langhorne Clemens (Mark Twain), and apparently translated by Marcel Schwob; 6 pages, folio, bearing an occasional printer's mark in ink.
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      Hartford, Nov. 4/ 88

      My Dear Sir:

      You seem to think me the author of the original of this singularly unpleasant production. But I assure you you have been deceived. I do commit crimes, but they are not of this grade.

      Very truly yours,
      S.L. Clemens

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      Page 2 transcript
      Return to S. L. CLEMENS,
      HARTFORD, Conn.,
      If not delivered within 5 days.

      Monsieur Marcel Schwob

      Chez M. Cahun
      Palais de l'Institut
      Paris France

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