London: Hollis and Carter, 1947. Second edition. Octavo, original navy cloth, gilt spine, red top edge, original dust jacket. Early owner signature to front endpaper, mild foxing to original dust jacket. A near-fine copy. Item #1399
"THE VOICE OF CAMPION COMES TO US ACROSS THE CENTURIES AS THOUGH HE WERE WALKING AT OUR SIDE"
Second edition of Evelyn Waugh's novelistic Life of the Elizabethan Jesuit and Martyr—illustrated for the first time along with the author's "Preface to Second Edition." This edition includes a frontispiece portrait of Campion along with eight additional illustrated plates.
First published in 1935; Edmund Campion was the winner of the 1936 Hawthornden Prize (given annually for the best work of literature by a British author under the age of forty-one). Waugh's new preface commends the value of Richard Simpson's Victorian biography of Campion and closes with a chilling comparison of Campion's martyrdom with the totalitarian persecution of the Church in the twentieth century: "We have seen the Church driven underground in one country after another. The hunted, trapped, murdered priest is amongst us again, and the voice of Campion comes to us across the centuries as though he were walking at our side." The book is divided into four sections: The Scholar; The Priest; The Hero; The Martyr. The text concludes: "Mells — Belton — Newton Ferrers / October 1934-May 1935."
Dedicated by Waugh "To Martin D'Arcy, S.J. Some-time Master of Campion Hall, Oxford." It was Father D'Arcy who had received Waugh into the Church in 1930 and Waugh retained the dedication for the new edition, changing "Master of Campion Hall" to "Some-time Master of Campion Hall." Appendix I prints "Campion's Brag," addressed to "The Lords of Her Majestie's Privy Council." The fugitive priest's apologia and declaration of purpose is thought to be the earliest defense of the faith to appear in English during the Counter-Reformation: "The expense is reckoned, the enterprise is begun; it is of God, it cannot be withstood. So the faith was planted: so it must be restored." Appendix II. The bibliography (initialed "E.W.") of "the books which, while I was working on this subject, I found chiefly interesting and relevant." Executed at the gallows at Tyburn on December 1, 1581, Edmund Campion was canonized by Pope Paul VI in October 1970 and named one of the Forty Martyrs of England and Wales. Ahearn APG 012e.