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Royall Tyler to Robert Woods Bliss, May 4, 1939


Dear Robert.

Thanks for you letter with the outline for the ZahnRobert Zahn (1870–1945), a German classical archaeologist and the director of the Antikensammlung, Berlin. He was a specialist in ancient ceramics, glass, and jewelry. campaign.This letter has not been preserved. See the postscript to the letter of March 31, 1939.

Old F. has contacted Zahn, and in a day or two a friend of Z. is going to meet Z. in Berlin, and tâter le terrain.“Test the waters.” I may be able to report shortly.

F. expects to have a firm proposal on the ivories by 2 June.

I enclose a letter from Marangoni.Luigi Marangoni (1872–1950), an Italian architect and the proto (custodian) of the Basilica of San Marco in Venice. See Otto Demus, The Church of San Marco in Venice: History, Architecture, Sculpture (Washington, D.C.: Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, 1960), 198.

I’m answering that I doubt whether it would be considered worth while to photo through the glass.Royall Tyler is referring to the panel with the half-figure of Saint Michael and roundels in the frame, Byzantine, late tenth–first half of the eleventh century, silver-gilt, gold, enamel, stones, and glass, Treasury, Cathedral of San Marco, Venice, no. 46. Especially, for the ravishing little roundels in the frame, which are not set at the same angle with the glass. BöhmOsvaldo Böhm, a photographer and publisher who specialized in images of the art and architecture of Venice. has done some of them for us, & the results aren’t brilliant. I asked M.Luigi Marangoni. to try & get consent to have the glass removed at least for long enough to do the rounderls in the frame. We’ll see what he answers.

I may be cabling you before you get this to announce my arrival, early in June.

For your private ear, I’ve been asked personally by Pal Teleki,Pál Janos Ede Count Teleki de Szék (1879–1941), prime minister of Hungary from 1920 to 1921 and from 1939 to 1941. now prime minister of Hungary, to go down there & pay them a visit, and I think I must go. I can’t get away from here for 10-12 days, & I’ll have to return here for a couple of days afterwards. That makes it impossible to escape as early as I’d like. But it’s good to have the prospect of shaking your heavy hand soon.

Much love to you both

R. T.

Associated People: Hermann Fiedler