PUCCINI, Giacomo, letters, autographs, documents, manuscripts

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PUCCINI, Giacomo (1858-1924). Italian composer.
Autograph Letter Signed to Sybil Seligman, 1 page 8vo on a folded letter-form with address on the reverse, Via Verdi 4, Milan, 23 December 1909. With a translation. Sending new year greetings to her, her husband and sister, and complaining of depression.
Sybil Seligman was Puccini's most constant female friend and at this time she was almost certainly his mistress.
'All best wishes to you, dear friend, to David, the boys, to Violet, and to your parents for a Happy New Year. I? I am at my table working. Am I alive? I don't know myself. For the time being I have Minnie - the rest is emptiness. But at least my health is good (Touch wood!).'[Puccini's version of 'Touch wood! is always the same - the drawing of a hand with the first and little fingers raised - to ward off the 'evil eye']
Puccini frequently refers to Fanciulla del West by the name of its heroine, Minnie. He had only recently returned to the composition following the scandal caused by his wife's not unnatural but apparently unfounded allegations of an affair between the composer and their maidservant Doria, and the girl's subsequent suicide in January of this year.
[No: 23443]

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