Flaubert, Gustave, 1932
Illustrations by Hortense Ansorge.
Fifty Books AIGA 1933
“I published this book because I wanted to publish books and wanted to show what I thought a book should look like. A slim format, flat back, narrow squares, flexible boards, 2 colors throughout: all of them then not customary. I was working for H. Wolff, but my office was at 27 Park Place near City Hall where the Statue of the She-wolf suckling Romulus and Remus stands. I wanted a publishing firm starting with R so it became Roman Press. The book did not make much of a stir but somebody (I forget who) wanted it suppressed for indecency. It came to trial, reported, I believe, in ‘Time’ magazine, but I was sick and could not attend; Hortense did, instead. We won but my funds were gone and I could not exploit my victory.”
“Hortense [Ansorge/first wife] drew the illustrations using me for the male model. The book was one of the fifty AIGA selections for 1932 , but did not sell. Fred Wagner [Unger?] kept the small remaining stock for me for years; then all was gone. I forgot to renew the copyright.” Charles [Anton?] published another edition, rather undistinguished, in the Sixties, with a new forward by Frank Jellinek, my translator. Though he calls me ‘a very nice man’ I don’t remember any of the details he recalls; this was his first translation from the French – now he’s a very well known translator.”
“… this was my first book publishing venture, financed by the profits from the ‘Cocktail Wheel.’ Everything I liked to do with a book I did here, it turned out well and I was happy with it.”