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The Hans Christian Andersen Center

Brev fra H.C. Andersen til Horace E. Scudder 24. juli 1868

Hop forbi menu og nyheder

Dato: 24. juli 1868
Fra: H.C. Andersen   Til: Horace E. Scudder
Sprog: engelsk.

Copenhagen, July 24, 1868.

HORACE E. SCUDDER, ESQ.

Care of Messrs. Hurd and Houghton, 459 N. Broome St., New York.

Dear Sir:

On my return from a trip to Holland France and Switzerland I received your esteemed favour of the 12th ulto. in reply to which I beg to observe, that I shall be most happy if my works could be more [widely] spread over the United States by a cheap edition, and I shall do my best to contribute to reach this. I enclose a list of my complete works. The Danish Edition consists of 24 volumes, and will be increased by 4 volumes more before Christmas, which I am then going to send you. They are not all fit for translation, I therefore shall point out those, which may be omitted. The translating might begin immediately so that the American Standard Edition would be published in one collection, but if it is preferred to publish my works successively, this of course is left to the Editors.

The American Edition ought to begin with my biography translated from the Danish edition, and not with Mary Howitz translation from the German, which is imperfect, and which was published abroad as a kind of introduction to the first German Edition. The Danish Biography appeared here 10 years later, and in the mean time I had collected several events of my life, which are mentioned in the Danish Edition. I therefore very much wish to have the larger Danish Edition translated, it not having been translated before, neither in German nor in English; there is a translation in Dutch with some abbreviations [i.e., condensations], it closes with my fiftieth year.-As introduction to my complete works, the story of my life might finish there, and I propose that the story of the last 13 years of my life follows as an appendix to the works at the end of the last volume, closing with an account of the festival at Odense last year, where I was nominated Citizen of honour, [an event] which I shall always bear in mind [i.e., remember].

In this way, I shall have time to write the new section of the history of my life, which I will send you in the course of 1869 for translation, as I suppose that the works cannot be ready for publishing before. With regard to the third point you mention, I shall send the Danish Edition in two divisions, with a small interval, adding such notes as may be of interest. The story of my life containing particulars about circumstances and periods at which the different works appeared, I do not intend to write a long preface, but only to begin with a short address to the American readers. - It is impossible to me to say how many different translations have been published.

As for the fourth point, I oblige myself to take care that any new stories or tales, which I may send to The Riverside Magazine are not published, neither in Danish nor in any other language until three months after they have been sent you. If I should send you contributions that have been published before I shall always mention it. Please then to fix the remuneration yourself. In this way my new work - the last 13 years of the story of my life-may be sent you three months before it is published anywhere. I expect that it will then [i.e., in consequence] be remunerated as an original work.

I rely on a good translations of my works from the Danish Edition, and sincerely trust you and the Editors. I will have nothing to do with the expenses, but you will take care of my interest and let me have my share. I have always been accustomed to leave it to my Editor [i.e., publisher] here Mr. Reitzel to fix my remuneration, and should wish you to do the same; I declare myself satisfied with your proposal of 5 per cent. on the retail price of every copy sold of the Standard Edition. Is it your opinion that a new arrangement ought to be made after 5 years? I am astonished to learn that the tales which Miss Raaslöff promised me to forward to the Magazine have not come to hand, Miss R. is now abroad, so I have no opportunity to inquire about it.

I now enclose a small new tale for the Magazine. It is entirely for children, of course. I do not know if it will please the American children, but I hope so. This tale will not be published here before October-November. I also enclose a new tale just published, and of course not translated yet, also for the Magazine. It is not in my power to prevent a translation, but if it be published soon in America it is sure to be a novelty.

I shall send you a good photographic portrait to be put in the Standard Edition. I reserve myself a few copies, I wish to give away two copies in America, the one to Mr. Longfellow, who has kindly sent his works to me, the other to Mr. Marcus Spring Eagle Wood near New York - besides I wish not less than 8 copies gratiously sent to me to Copenhagen - this you will no doubt agree with, and not find presumptious.

With my best regards to you, to my editors and to other friends in America, and hoping soon to hear from you again, I remain, dear Sir,

Yours truly,

HANS CHRISTIAN ANDERSEN

* The Illustrated News (Danish newspaper) [for] 30 July 68, wherein the above mentioned tale has just been published wiil be sent to your address under separate cover.

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