January 30 Sunday – In Vienna, Austria, Sam’s recent letter to T.H. about Emile Zola (1840-1902) ran in the New York Herald as “Zola and Dreyfus.” Sam had been moved by Zola’s publication this month of J’Accuse to the French newspaper, L’Aurore. Zola cut up the French authorities for framing Captain Alfred Dreyfus:
It is a grand figure—Zola—standing there all alone fighting his splendid fight to save the remains of the honor of France. I feel for him the profoundest reverence and an admiration which has no bounds. Ecclesiastical and military courts made up of cowards, hypocrites and time-servers can be bred at a rate of a million a year and have material left over; but it takes five centuries to breed a Joan of Arc & a Zola [MTP: NB 42 TS 54]. Dolmetsch quotes part of this as a letter to Zola, which was “evidently never sent…probably because Zola fled to England to escape sentencing and his exact whereabouts were unknown for a while” .
January 31 Monday
February – In Vienna, Austria, Sam inscribed an aphorism on his photo (taken by “the official court photographer,” Julius Löwy) to Friedrich Eckstein:“It is one’s human environment / that makes climate. / Truly Yours / Mark Twain / With kindest salutations / from S.L. Clemens / Feb. 1898” [MTP; Dolmetsch 273]. Note: See Dolmetsch 270-3, including this portrait on p. 271. Eckstein met the Clemenses when he stayed with the Charles Dudley Warner’s “in the early 1880s”. Eckstein was one of the first callers on the Clemenses when they arrived at the Metropole Hotel.
A member of a prominent socialist Viennese family, Friedrich Eckstein (1861- 1939) was a polymath [Renaissance man] and prominent member of turn-of-the-century café society in Vienna. A devotée of esoteric and Eastern knowledge, he influenced Rudolf Steiner in the 1880s; founded in 1886 with Blavatsky’s permission the Viennese branch of the Theosophical Society; and published occult material under the pseudonym “Mac Eck.” His literary and musical circle at the Café Imperial in Vienna included
Karl Kraus, Arthur Schnitzler, Hugo Wolf, Anton Bruckner, Hugo von Hofmannsthal, Franz Werfel, Rainer Maria Rilke, Robert Musil, and Adolf Loos. Originally a private student of Bruckner’s, he later became Bruckner’s secretary and biographer. A close friend of Freud’s for decades, Eckstein and his family were intimately involved with the development of psychoanalysis from the beginning—his sister, Emma, was the “Irma” of the dream of Irma’s injection. For years the Ecksteins and Freuds vacationed together and in later years Eckstein was a member of Freud’s Saturday night card-playing group. Freud called him “Fritz” [John Gach Books online: http://www.gach.com/Gach/L1575-01.HTM]. (Editorial emphasis.)
Sam also inscribed a photo to Katy Leary: “To Katy Leary from her friend Mark Twain” [MTP].
Sam also inscribed a photo to Eduard Pötzl: “Feb. 1898. / To Ed. P ötzl / With the love of / S.L. Clemens / [verso:] It is easier for a camel to enter the Kingdom of Heaven through the eye of a rich man’s needle than it is for any other foreigner to read the terrible German script. / Mark Twain” [MTP].
Mercure de France for February ran an anonymous review, “Lettres Anglaises,” of More Tramps Abroad, (FE) [Tenney 27-8].
Sir Walter Besant’s article, “My Favorite Novelist and His Best Book,” ran in Munsey’s Magazine, p. 659-64. Tenney: Praises HF for the pleasure it gives a reader, as an adventure story and for a picture of its time and place, ‘because, you see, there is no moral in this book; and no motive; and no plot’” .Note: See Feb. 22, 1898 to Besant, which connects with this article.
Bookman (London) reviewed More Tramps Abroad, (FE) . Tenney: “Brief and descriptive: MT’s manner has been often imitated and this will not be as popular as his earlier travel books. The reader will find MT ‘an agreeable fellow -tramp, observant, thirsty for information, unprejudiced, and unconventional, often flippant in the wrong place, but not obtrusively playing the funny man’” .
SLC used mourning border for most letters from Susy’s death on, then from Livy’s death on.