Lot #3026
Samuel L. Clemens Signed Photograph

Twice-signed Mark Twain portrait, presented to Mrs. Fridtjof Nansen: "He had his desire—he has seen the pole; I have had mine, for I have seen him"

Estimate: $12000+

Description

Twice-signed Mark Twain portrait, presented to Mrs. Fridtjof Nansen: "He had his desire—he has seen the pole; I have had mine, for I have seen him"

Amazing, crystal-clear 4.25 x 6.5 cabinet photo of the author by J. Lowy of Vienna, boldly signed at the top of the image in ink with a reference to the polar explorer Fridtjof Nansen, "He had his desire—he has seen the pole; I have had mine, for I have seen him. Mark Twain," and signed and inscribed on the mount to his wife, "To Mrs. Mrs. Fridtjof Nansen, With best salutations of S. L. Clemens, May, 1898." In fine condition, with light surface scratching.

The Clemens family visited Austria for about a year-and-a-half, from the end of September 1897 through the end of May 1899, spending most of their time at the summer resort of Kaltenleutgeben near Vienna. During that period, Twain was the toast of the town, hobnobbing with Viennese elite such as 'Waltz King' Johann Strauss II, renowned pacifist Bertha von Suttner, Countess Misa von Wydenbruck-Esterhazy, pianist Theodor Leschetizky, and pioneering psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud. Another of his celebrity encounters was evidently the Norwegian explorer Fridtjof Nansen, who had reached a northern latitude record during the Fram expedition of 1893-96. His wife, Eva Nansen, was a celebrated mezzo-soprano singer who would have traveled in the same artistic circles as Clemens. A striking, charmingly inscribed portrait of the celebrated author.

Auction Info

  • Auction Title: Remarkable Rarities
  • Dates: #638 - Ended June 23, 2022





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