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PROUST, Marcel

Pastiches et Mélanges

Paris, NRF, 1919

INSCRIBED TO JACQUES TRUELLE

FIRST EDITION

In-12 (187 x 124mm)

INSCRIBED :

À Jacques Truelle,
ces transpositions de nos conversations
sur les grands écrivains et sur les gens du monde.
En tendre amitié,
Marcel Proust

[To Jacques Truelle,
these transcriptions of our conversations
on the great writers and on people of the world.
In tender friendship,
Marcel Proust]

CONTEMPORARY BINDING. Dos en veau orné, plats de papier marbré, tranche supérieure dorée, couverture et dos conservés
PROVENANCE : Jacques Truelle (inscribed)

Restored hinges

Jacques Truelle was a young man from a good family, who voluntarily joined the military and lost a leg in the war. He met Marcel Proust in March 1917 while preparing for a diplomatic career at the École Libre des Sciences Politiques (where Proust also studied). Informed of his "friendship for Swann", Proust invited him to dinner at Ciro’s. A loving friendship began. The fifteen letters which remain testify to an immediate intimacy between the worn-out writer of 46 and the young invalid of 26. This friendship also included the couple Paul Morand and Princess Soutzo with whom Proust maintained a triangular relationship. If Proust was obviously Jacques Truelle’s literary mentor (the latter submitted at least one story to him), Paul Morand, the young diplomat of 29, was probably the one to guide him towards his career. Truelle became the attaché at the embassy in Rome in May 1918, and intended to follow in the footsteps of the writer-diplomats of the Quai d’Orsay.

Truelle was also perfectly at home in the "World". Proust’s correspondence and Morand’s Journal show him assiduously frequenting the writer’s close friends – notably the Bibescos, as well as a host of fashionable young women. However, beyond society life, Proust and Truelle were obviously connected by sincere esteem and affection. "He is, wrote Proust, an admirable heart (like his mind). Even though he was amputated during the war, he has never ceased, no longer having any interest in peace, to support the most violently pacifist theses before people who should be the most scandalized" (letter to Lionel Hauser, October 23, 1918). To Truelle himself, he wrote : "we have so much the same point of view on life, it’s almost something admirable" (letter from the end of June 1919).

BIBLIOGRAPHY : Catherine Nicault, La Trajectoire tourmentée du diplomate Jacques Truelle, Paris, 2008, pp. 349 et suiv. -- Jean-Yves Tadié, Marcel Proust, Paris, Gallimard, 1996, p. 661 -- Dictionnaire Marcel Proust, Paris, 2004, p. 142