Exalted by the critical success of The Great Gatsby but not yet aware of the disappointing sales, the Fitzgeralds left Capri in early April 1925 and joined the thirty thousand Americans who were then living in Paris. They rented a fifth-floor walk-up flat at 14 rue de Tilsitt, near the Arc de Triomphe, until the end of the year. A photograph taken at Christmas showed an elegantly dressed and apparently happy family in front of an elaborately decorated tree, a pile of presents, a low chandelier and an overflowing bookcase. Scott wore a three-piece suit and thick-soled shoes, Zelda (with slender legs but now wider at the hips) was burdened by a huge corsage, and the beribboned four-year-old Scottie, nervous about the pose, bit her lower lip and showed her knickers as they all did a chorus-line kick.
In reality the Fitzgeralds were not the secure and happy family they appeared to be. The novelist Louis Bromfield, who visited them that year, found their place ornate and pretentious: "It represented to some degree the old aspirations and a yearning for stability, but somehow it got only halfway and was neither one thing nor the other… The furniture was gilt Louis XVI but a suite from the Galeries Lafayette [department store]. The wallpaper was the usual striped stuff in dull colors that went with that sort of flat. It was all rather like a furniture shop window and I always had the impression that the Fitzgeralds were camping there between two worlds." Zelda, noting their inability to escape the wounds inflicted by her affair with Jozan, recalled that the stale flat "smelled of a church chancery because it was impossible to ventilate" and became "a perfect breeding place for the germs of bitterness they brought with them from the Riviera." Scottie also remembered that the "apartments were always rather dark and unprepossessing, with their only redeeming feature the views over the rooftops which so fascinated my mother. The elevators were always 'en panne' [out of order] and I can feel the heavy chains, suspended from the ceiling, that caused such an uproarious commotion in all our toilets."1
Coming to Paris allowed the Fitzgeralds to escape the scene of their unhappiness on the Riviera and the oppressive atmosphere of Fascist Italy, and to enter the world of American expatriates in this lively and stimulating city. They could sit in cafes, drink in bars, eat in restaurants, see their friends and visit literary salons. Paris enabled many American artists to escape Prohibition as well as the moral and intellectual confinement of American society, and to breathe the freer air of continental culture. But the very freedom of the city, where they could live inexpensively and create their own social roles, did not help the Fitzgeralds. This time in France deepened the rift between them, made Zelda more insecure and propelled her toward her future mental crisis. Scott continued to waste money and drink heavily, spending his time at parties, dances and nightclubs instead of concentrating on his work. His friendship with Ernest Hemingway accentuated Fitzgerald's personal crises. But Ernest's harsh yet truthful criticism helped Scott to define his ideas about art and to recognize that his way of life was destructive.
In October 1924, six months before the Fitzgeralds settled in Paris, Edmund Wilson had reviewed Hemingway's pamphlet in our time. He told Fitzgerald about the young writer who had begun to publish his strikingly original stories and poems with small private presses in Paris. Fitzgerald's meeting with Hemingway in the Dingo Bar in late April 1925, two weeks after the publication of The Great Gatsby and six months before the enlarged trade edition of In Our Time, led to the most important friendship of Scott's life. He was then writing for the three million readers of the Saturday Evening Post while Hemingway's work was still confined to little magazines. Fitzgerald was three years older, had gone to Princeton, published three successful novels and made a great deal of money. But Hemingway-an athlete, war veteran and foreign correspondent who had established a reputation as a dedicated writer before he had actually published anything-became his heroic and artistic ideal.
Six inches taller and forty pounds heavier than Fitzgerald, Hemingway was a literary version of the bloodied and bandaged football heroes Scott had worshiped in college. Hemingway later told Arthur Mizener, to exemplify Fitzgerald's immaturity and naivete, that he remembered "one time in N.Y. we were walking down Fifth Avenue and [Scott] said, 'if only I could play foot-ball again with everything I know about it now.' " But Hemingway, who did not meet Fitzgerald in New York until after he had published The Sun Also Rises in 1926, actually attributed to Fitzgerald a statement made by his own fictional anti-hero, Robert Cohn: "I think I'd rather play football again with what I know about handling myself, now." Hemingway was so fond of this phrase that he recycled it in Across the River and into the Trees (1950), published the same year as his letter to Mizener, when his hero Richard Cantwell thinks about the war: "I wish I could fight it again, he thought. Knowing what I know now."2
Hemingway had the masculine strength, capacity for drink, athletic prowess and experience in battle that Fitzgerald sadly lacked and desperately desired. And his impressive achievements seemed to magnify Fitzgerald's failures. Both writers were fascinated by the war. Hemingway had suffered a traumatic wound when serving with the Red Cross in Italy while Fitzgerald had merely experienced "noncombatant's shell shock." Fitzgerald owned a bloodcurdling collection of photograph albums of horribly mutilated soldiers, stereopticon slides of executions and roasted aviators, and lavishly illustrated French tomes of living men whose faces had been chewed away by shrapnel. In a remarkably morbid letter of December 1927, he told Hemingway: "I have a new German war book, Die Krieg Against Krieg, which shows men who mislaid their faces in Picardy and the Caucasus-you can imagine how I thumb it over, my mouth fairly slathering with fascination." The photographs in Ernst Friedrich's Krieg dem Kriege! (Berlin, 1924) stimulated his pathological curiosity about the war-a subject he had ignored at Princeton and evaded in his first two novels-and allowed him to confront in his imagination scenes of violence, mutilation and death. Hemingway also took perverse pleasure in emphasizing the grisly details of war wounds in works like "The Natural History of the Dead" (1932). He too was fascinated by gruesome photos of maimed bodies. In 1935 he took and collected pictures of bloated corpses after the Matecumbe hurricane in the Florida Keys, and during the Spanish Civil War reproduced some astonishing horrors in "Dying, Well or Badly" (1938).
But the two writers had very different ideas about the use of violent experience in art. In December 1925 Hemingway defined his attraction to the intensity of war by telling Fitzgerald: "the reason you are so sore you missed the war is because war is the best subject of all. It groups the maximum of material and speeds up the action and brings out all sorts of stuff that normally you would have to wait a lifetime to get." Hemingway believed you had to live the actual experience before you could write about it honestly. Fitzgerald believed (as he had to, given his lack of experience in war) that imagination could serve the artist's purpose just as well, that "if you weren't able to function in action you might at least be able to tell about it, because you felt the same intensity-it was a back door way out of facing reality."
There were also considerable differences in their characters and way of life. Janet Flanner, the Paris correspondent for the New Yorker, found Fitzgerald's manner "remote" and thought he was "set apart by his elegance."3 Fitzgerald always stayed in luxurious hotels; and his expensive apartment in Paris isolated him from ordinary life and placed him among the rich American tourists of the Right Bank. Hemingway preferred small pensions and modest flats, which in Paris put him in touch with local people on the more bohemian Left Bank. Fitzgerald had an English nanny for his daughter; Hemingway had a French peasant to look after his son. In the summers, Fitzgerald went to the Riviera to lie on the beach; Hemingway went to Spain to see the bullfights and live the experience he would write about in The Sun Also Rises. Fitzgerald could compete with Hemingway as a writer but not as a sportsman. Unlike the Murphys, Dos Passos, Don Stewart and Max Perkins, Fitzgerald never followed Hemingway to Spain or went fishing with him in Key West.
But Fitzgerald, who emphasized his extravagance, seemed wealthier than he actually was while Hemingway, who exaggerated his poverty, was not as poor as he claimed to be. Though his wife had a comfortable trust fund, Hemingway said he had to catch pigeons in the public park so they could have some food for dinner. When they first met, Hemingway must have envied and desired Fitzgerald's literary fame, material success and luxurious way of life, which provided a striking contrast to his own obscurity and rather pinched existence. But he made a virtue of this difference, compared his own frugality to Fitzgerald's wastefulness and ironically offered to send all his royalties to his friend's villa on the Riviera.
Fitzgerald lived lavishly and squandered his talent; Hemingway (who lectured him about this, as Fitzgerald had lectured Lardner) lived in relative poverty so that he could dedicate himself to art. Hemingway was absolutely sure of himself; Fitzgerald was full of self-doubts. While Fitzgerald had unbounded admiration for Hemingway's talent, Ernest (like Edmund Wilson) was extremely critical of Scott's faults. Though Fitzgerald seemed to toss off stories while Hemingway struggled to perfect every word, Scott contrasted his own plodding struggle to Ernest's natural ability. As he later wrote Perkins: "I told [Hemingway], against all the logic that was then current, that I was the tortoise and he was the hare, and that's the truth of the matter, that everything I have ever attained has been through long and persistent struggle while it is Ernest who has a touch of genius which enables him to bring off extraordinary things with facility."
Fitzgerald seemed to have a much weaker character, but he was actually more courageous than Hemingway when faced with adversity. Hemingway was ruthless with anyone who interfered with his work or his wishes. When his marriages went bad, he selfishly discarded a series of sometimes rich and always devoted wives. Ill equipped to deal with disease and depression, he finally shot himself. Fitzgerald, by contrast, endured poverty and neglect during the 1930s and remained loyal to Zelda in her madness.
Despite these significant differences, Fitzgerald and Hemingway initially had a good deal in common. Both writers came from a middle-class Midwestern background, had a strong mother and weak father, were close in age, were married, had one small child, lived an expatriate life in Paris and were devoted to the craft of writing. They traveled in the same social circles and, through mutual introductions, shared many of the same friends. Ezra Pound had introduced Hemingway to Scott's Princeton classmate Henry Strater. Don Stewart ran with Hemingway and the bulls in Pamplona and went trout fishing in Burguete, was instrumental in getting In Our Time published in New York and was a model for Bill Gorton in The Sun Also Rises. After Hemingway joined Scribner's, Max Perkins also became his close friend, and often acted as intermediary between the two writers. Both Hemingway and Fitzgerald sat at the feet of Gertrude Stein and-along with Dos Passos and Dorothy Parker-enjoyed the hospitality of the Murphys. In the late 1920s both writers became friendly with the Canadian novelist Morley Callaghan.
Shortly after they met, Fitzgerald persuaded Hemingway to accompany him on a trip to Lyon to recover the Renault he and Zelda had abandoned on the way to Paris. Under the heading "Most Pleasant Trips" in his Notebooks, Scott listed "Auto Ernest and I North." And in June 1925 Hemingway told Perkins: "Scott Fitzgerald is living here now and we see quite a lot of him. We had a great trip together driving his car up from Lyon through the Cote d'Or." Thirty years later, in A Moveable Feast, Hemingway, who had no tolerance for weakness or for behavior he considered unmanly, gave a radically revised and contemptuously affectionate account of that ludicrous car trip. In his posthumous time bomb he portrayed Fitzgerald as hostile to the French, childish and gauche, wasteful and irresponsible, quarrelsome and irritating, hypochondriac and insecure, dependent upon and dominated by Zelda, a complacent and self-confessed cuckold, a drunkard, an artistic whore, a destroyer of his own talent.
Fitzgerald, however, at that time and later on, had nothing but admiration for Hemingway's integrity and fiction, and adopted him as his artistic conscience. After their drive through Burgundy, he told Gertrude Stein: "He's a peach of a fellow and absolutely first-rate" and called himself (with a characteristic sense of inferiority in relation to Hemingway) "a very second-rate person compared to first-rate people." When Booth Tarkington met the traveling companions in Paris that year, he thought they got on splendidly-though Hemingway (in his eyes) lacked the Princeton polish: "My impression was of a Kansas University football beef; but I rather liked him. Fitzgerald brought him up and was a little tight-took him away because Hemingway was to have a [boxing] fight that afternoon at three o'clock, though I gathered they'd both been up all night."4
Fitzgerald liked to tell admiring stories of Hemingway and invest his life with a special touch of glamour. The hero of his four absurd "Count of Darkness" stories was modeled on Hemingway as he might have existed in the Middle Ages. In these tales Fitzgerald portrayed Hemingway as a medieval knight; in A Moveable Feast Ernest portrayed the sickly Scott as "a little dead crusader." Fitzgerald said that he "had always longed to absorb into himself some of the qualities that made Ernest attractive, and to lean on him like a sturdy crutch in times of psychological distress." The novelist Glenway Wescott, who would soon be satirized as the homosexual Robert Prentiss in The Sun Also Rises, exaggerated Fitzgerald's artistic irresponsibility and personal abasement when he claimed that Scott cared more about Hemingway's work than about his own. But there is no doubt that Fitzgerald (like Murphy and Archibald MacLeish) hero-worshiped Hemingway. According to Wescott, Fitzgerald "honestly felt that Hemingway was inimitably, essentially superior. From the moment Hemingway began to appear in print, perhaps it did not matter what he himself produced or failed to produce. He felt free to write just for profit, and to live for fun, if possible. Hemingway could be entrusted with the graver responsibilities and higher rewards such as glory, immortality. This extreme of admiration-this excuse for a morbid belittlement and abandonment of himself-was bad for Fitzgerald."
Fitzgerald took several practical steps to advance Hemingway's career and introduced him to Scribner's just as Shane Leslie had once introduced him to that firm. In October 1924, six months before he met Hemingway and while living in Saint-Raphael, Fitzgerald (still vague about details) told Perkins about the first in our time. It had been published, with Pound's help, by William Bird's Three Mountains Press in the spring of 1924. "This is to tell you," Fitzgerald wrote, "about a young man named Ernest Hemingway, who lives in Paris, (an American) writes for the transatlantic review & has a brilliant future. Ezra Pound published a collection of his short pieces in Paris, at some place like the Egoist Press. I haven't it here now but it's remarkable & I'd look him up right away. He's the real thing."5
Fitzgerald had urged Wescott to write a laudatory essay to launch Hemingway. When Wescott (more concerned about his own career) refused, Fitzgerald wrote an enthusiastic review of In Our Time in the Bookman of March 1926. He had been tremendously impressed by the autobiographical revelations and the high art of these violent tales about bullfighting, criminals, war, politics and executions, "felt a sort of renewal of excitement at these stories" and, in a notable tribute, said he had read them "with the most breathless unwilling interest I have experienced since Conrad first bent my reluctant eyes upon the sea."
On Fitzgerald's early recommendation Perkins had expressed serious interest in the second In Our Time before he even read the book. But his letter reached Hemingway ten days after he had accepted Boni & Liveright's offer, which gave them an option on his next three books. In late November 1925 Hemingway rapidly wrote The Torrents of Spring: A Romantic Novel in Honor of the Passing of a Great Race, whose subtitle echoed The Passing of the Idle Rich (1911) by Frederick Townsend Martin, the father of Fitzgerald's Princeton friend Townsend Martin. The Torrents of Spring was a satire on Dark Laughter (1925), the latest book by Hemingway's friend Sherwood Anderson. Then at the height of his reputation, Anderson was Boni & Liveright's best-selling author.
Fitzgerald knew that if Boni & Liveright rejected the book, Hemingway would be free to follow him to Scribner's. He could then publish his nearly completed The Sun Also Rises with a more commercially successful firm, acquire a first-rate editor and have an outlet for his stories in Scribner's Magazine. But Fitzgerald, whose loyalty to Hemingway was even greater than to Scribner's, thought The Torrents of Spring was a funny and a salutary book. On December 30 he urged Horace Liveright to publish it: "It seems about the best comic book ever written by an American. It is simply devastating to about seven-eighths of the work of imitation Andersons, to facile and 'correct' culture." On the same day, in a letter to Perkins (who was equally eager to capture Hemingway) Fitzgerald expressed his belief that Anderson's feeble fiction provoked and deserved Hemingway's witty and well-executed condemnation: "I agree with Ernest that Anderson's last two books have let everybody down who believed in him-I think they're cheap, faked, obscurantic and awful." Two weeks later, when Liveright (as expected) had rejected the attack on his star author, Fitzgerald emphasized Hemingway's inexperience with publishers and urged Perkins to take the satire in order to get the new novel: "To hear him talk you'd think Liveright had broken up his home and robbed him of millions-but that's because he knows nothing of publishing, except in the cuckoo magazines, and is very young and feels helpless so far away [in Paris]. You won't be able to help liking him-he's one of the nicest fellows I ever knew."6
Fitzgerald's enthusiasm about the humor in The Torrents of Spring was rather surprising because Hemingway (remembering Scott's drunken visits to his Paris flat) had also satirized him as an alcoholic clown: "Mr. F. Scott Fitzgerald came to our home one afternoon, and after remaining for quite a while suddenly sat down in the fireplace and would not (or was it could not, reader?) get up and let the fire burn something else… I have the utmost respect for Mr. Fitzgerald and let anybody else attack him and I would be the first to spring to his defense!" In an interview published in April 1927 Fitzgerald alluded to Hemingway's subtitle and his Indian themes, and despondently declared: "There is now no mind of the race, there is now no great old man of the tribe, there are no longer any feet to sit at."7
Fitzgerald later recalled that his devotion to Hemingway had-like Anderson's-been repaid with hostility. Scott sadly observed that he, and especially Ernest, had hardened their carapaces and turned against their friends: "People like Ernest and me were very sensitive once and saw so much that it agonized us to give pain. People like Ernest and me love to make people very happy, caring desperately about their happiness. And then people like Ernest and me had reactions and punished people for being stupid." Scott and Zelda had not yet begun their fatal decline when Hemingway first met them, but he was able to perceive the warning signs. Unusually vindictive to benefactors, Hemingway felt superior to Fitzgerald (in Oak Park the Irish were usually servants) and tended to bully him, "like a tough little boy sneering at a delicate but talented little boy." In his retrospective recollection of Fitzgerald, the tough Hemingway uses the words "pretty," "delicate," "girl," "beauty" and "beautiful" to emphasize Scott's effeminate, even decadent good looks: "Scott was a man then who looked like a boy with a face between handsome and pretty. He had very fair wavy hair, a high forehead, excited and friendly eyes and a delicate long-lipped Irish mouth that, on a girl, would have been the mouth of a beauty. His chin was well built and he had good ears and a handsome, almost beautiful unmarked nose… The mouth worried you until you knew him and then it worried you more."8
As this passage suggests, Hemingway was drawn to Fitzgerald's attractiveness and charm. But, unerringly perceptive about human weakness, he also despised Fitzgerald's worship of youth, his sexual naivete, attraction to money, alcoholism, self-pity and lack of dedication to his art. Paraphrasing Georges Clemenceau and Henry Adams on American society, Hemingway felt Fitzgerald put so much value on youth that he confused growing up with growing old, never achieved maturity and "jumped straight from youth to senility" without going through manhood.9 Fitzgerald also irritated Hemingway (who misunderstood Scott's motives) by asking if he had slept with his wife, Hadley, before they were married. By posing this awkward question, Fitzgerald was not prying into Hemingway's sex life, but trying to understand his own. He really wanted to know if Zelda, who had recently had an affair with Jozan, had been unusual-and immoral-by sleeping with him (and others) before they were married.
Some of Fitzgerald's Paris friends found him sympathetic and convivial when in his cups, but most of them could not tolerate his alcoholism. The humorist James Thurber first met him in the summer of 1925. Imitating Fitzgerald's series of adjectives in his obituary of Ring Lardner, Thurber affectionately described Scott with a string of contradictory words: "witty, forlorn, pathetic, romantic, worried, hopeful and despondent." And the composer Deems Taylor, Fitzgerald's Great Neck friend, joined him in some lively, Lardner-like pranks in a Paris nightclub. Taylor's daughter recalled that "my father did mention several drinking sprees with Scott in Paris, and what he considered Scott's outrageous sense of humor. I remember he said that once they were together at Zelli's, surrounded by poules [whores], and Scott said, 'Let's get rid of these girls.' 'Fine,' said my father. So Scott turned to the ladies and said, 'I like only men. And this is my friend.' The girls went away, all right."10
But Hemingway, unlike Fitzgerald, did not drink until after his daily stint of writing was completed and never allowed alcohol to interfere with his work. Much of the trouble between them came from Fitzgerald's attempts to keep up with Hemingway's drinking. Fitzgerald's worst qualities, Hemingway thought, were his inability to hold his liquor-a crucial test of manhood-and his compulsion to humiliate himself and others when he inevitably got drunk. Fitzgerald passed out on the very first evening they spent together, and the memory of Scott's waxen death's-head remained rooted in Hemingway's mind.
Writing from Minnesota in August 1921, Fitzgerald had gloomily told Perkins: "I should like to sit down with ? dozen chosen companions and drink myself to death." Three years later, in his "Imaginary Conversation" between Fitzgerald and Van Wyck Brooks, Edmund Wilson had the enthusiastic Fitzgerald, then living in Great Neck, say: "Think of being able to give a stupendous house party that would go on for days and days, with everything that anybody could want to drink and a medical staff in attendance and the biggest jazz orchestras in the city alternating night and day!" Fitzgerald must have also said something like this to Hemingway, who wrote from Spain in July 1925 defining the differences in their tastes and values. He portrayed Fitzgerald as empty, faithful, snobbish and alcoholic; himself as experienced, athletic, fantastically adulterous and sober: "I wonder what your idea of heaven would be-A beautiful vacuum filled with wealthy monogamists, all powerful and members of the best families, all drinking themselves to death… To me heaven would be a bull ring with me holding two barrera [front-row] seats and a trout stream outside that no one else was allowed to fish in and two lovely houses in the town; one where I would have my wife and children … the other where I would have my nine beautiful mistresses."11
Hemingway thought it bad enough that Fitzgerald's drinking was ruining his life, but found it absolutely intolerable when it began to interfere with his own sleep and work. Hemingway felt Fitzgerald did not know how to behave-either socially or morally. He would come drunk to Hemingway's flat (as he had come to the Myers') at any time of the day or night and insult anyone he considered inferior. When little Scottie had to pee and Hemingway's landlord directed them to the toilet, Fitzgerald, angered by his intrusion, exclaimed: "Yes, and I'll put your head in it too, if you're not careful." Though Hemingway hated Fitzgerald's late-night visits, he used the opportunity to observe his alcoholic behavior. Later on, however, he became intensely irritated with Fitzgerald's pranks and their friendship began to cool. He refused to tell Scott his address, lest his drunken antics endanger Hemingway's lease, and insisted they meet only in cafes and restaurants.
Fitzgerald sometimes seemed to welcome the chance to display the worst side of his character. He was particularly unpleasant in June 1926 when he broke up an elegant party the Murphys gave to welcome the Hemingways to Antibes. Jealous of the attention paid to Hemingway, Fitzgerald threw ashtrays at the other tables, laughed hilariously and drove the disgusted Gerald away from his own festivities. In January 1933, after Hemingway had achieved great success with A Farewell to Arms and Fitzgerald's career was stagnant, Scott turned up drunk in New York for a dinner with Hemingway and Edmund Wilson. Fitzgerald's behavior shocked the two hardened drinkers, who would never have used liquor as an excuse to degrade themselves in public. Wilson thought this incident illustrated Fitzgerald's habitual self-humiliation, his combination of childishness and cunning, which enabled him to excuse his own failings and attack others without provoking retaliation: "The last time I ever saw [Hemingway]," Wilson wrote, "I had dinner with him and Scott Fitzgerald. Hemingway was now a great man and Scott was so much overcome by his greatness that he embarrassed me by his self-abasement, and he finally lay down on the restaurant floor, pretending to be unconscious but actually listening in on the conversation and from time to time needling his hero, whose weaknesses he had studied intently, with malicious little interpolations." At regular intervals, Hemingway and Wilson would take Scott to the toilet and hold his head while he vomited. When he recovered, Scott insulted his friends and then asked if they still liked him.
Fitzgerald apologized in a letter to Wilson the following month. He completely agreed with Wilson's interpretation of his behavior, and tried to explain how his admiration for and resentment of Hemingway brought out his self-destructive impulse: "I came to New York to get drunk and swinish and I shouldn't have looked up you and Ernest in such a humor of impotent desperation: I assume all responsibility for all unpleasantness-with Ernest I seem to have reached a state where when we drink together I half bait, half truckle to him."12
Unlike Hemingway, Fitzgerald was both boring and boorish when drunk. Hemingway vaguely remembered an awful night in New York when he had to bribe the doorman at the Plaza Hotel to compensate for Scott's terrible behavior. He then told Fitzgerald that he would not dine out with him unless he stopped insulting the waiters. Writing in a confessional mood in September 1929, Fitzgerald innocently emphasized the maudlin aspect of his character that Hemingway so despised: "My latest tendency is to collapse about 11:00 and, with the tears flowing from my eyes or the gin rising to their level and leaking over, tell interested friends or acquaintances that I haven't a friend in the world."
Four years later Fitzgerald told Perkins, who often received Scott's confidences and Ernest's condemnations, that he felt compelled to live up to the defensive persona he had established with Hemingway. Ernest "has long convinced himself that I am an incurable alcoholic, due to the fact that we almost always meet at parties. I am his alcoholic just like Ring is mine and do not want to disillusion him." Yet alcohol had formed a bond between Scott and Ring (a "good" drinker) that never existed with Ernest. Fitzgerald later tried to equate his drinking with Hemingway's: "An inferiority complex comes simply from not feeling you're doing the best you can-and Ernest's 'drink' was simply a form of this." But their tolerance for alcohol was very different. Fitzgerald got drunk and passed out after only a few drinks; Hemingway could down several bottles of wine without showing the effects. Their striking similarities (which Fitzgerald hinted at) did not emerge until the end of Hemingway's life, when he began to drink and damage himself as much as Fitzgerald had done. In 1930 Fitzgerald told Zelda's doctor: "Give up strong drink permanently I will. Bind myself to forswear wine forever I cannot." In 1957 Hemingway told MacLeish: "Wine I never thought anybody could take away from you. But they can."13
Fitzgerald's alcoholism not only alienated his friends and interfered with his writing, but also limited his understanding and choked off his lifeline to fictional material. "How could he know people except on the surface," Hemingway (repeating Sara Murphy's criticism) asked the critic Malcolm Cowley, "when he never fucked anybody, nobody told him anything except as an answer to a question and he was always too drunk late at night to remember what anybody really said." He believed that Fitzgerald's troubles were self-inflicted and that he almost took pride in his shameless defeat. In his gloomier moments of self-analysis, Scott agreed with Ernest and admitted: "At the last crisis, I knew I had no real courage, perseverance or self-respect."
Though Fitzgerald ruthlessly observed and accurately portrayed his own alcoholism in Tender Is the Night, "The Crack-Up," the Pat Hobby stories and "The Lost Decade," he never convincingly explained what compelled him to drink. He never found the cause of his addiction and never (until the last year of his life) brought it under control. Though his alcoholism got worse after Zelda's mental breakdown in 1930, she was also partly responsible for his drinking before she became ill. Instead of restraining him for his own good, Zelda encouraged him for her own pleasure. She was, Hemingway believed, insanely jealous of Scott's work. Whenever Fitzgerald decided to write instead of drink, she treated him as if he were a killjoy or spoilsport. "He would start to work," Hemingway wrote, "and as soon as he was working well Zelda would begin complaining about how bored she was and get him off on another drunken party."14
Fitzgerald drank to heighten his feelings and put himself in the proper mood for a party; to attract attention, charm, upset, disrupt and shock. As William James observed: "Sobriety diminishes, discriminates, and says no; drunkenness expands, unites, and says yes… It brings its votary from the chill periphery of things to the radiant core." Liquor inspired Fitzgerald's conviviality, extinguished his remorse and compensated for his feelings of inferiority. It prolonged his state of irresponsibility, provided useful if temporary comfort and gave the illusion of happiness. "Drink made past happy things contemporary with the present," he explained in Tender Is the Night, "as if they were still going on, contemporary even with the future as if they were about to happen again." The best explanation of the social motives for drinking and of the futile attempt to transform himself into a pleasure-giving Gerald Murphy appeared in "A New Leaf," a minor story of 1931: "I found that with a few drinks I got expansive and somehow had the ability to please people, and the idea turned my head. Then I began to take a whole lot of drinks to keep going and have everybody think I was wonderful. Well, I got plastered a lot and quarreled with most of my friends."15
Alcohol prevented Fitzgerald from writing. But it also helped compensate for physical and emotional exhaustion, gave him courage to return to his work and enhanced the power of his imagination. "Drink heightens feeling," he declared. "When I drink it heightens my emotions and I put them in a story." He found liquor a relief from the oppressive strain of writing as well as an anodyne from the even greater torments of creative sterility.
Most often, however, Fitzgerald sought relief in alcoholic binges during times of emotional stress. He drank to keep up morale-to shield himself from torturing memories, from insupportable loneliness and from a dread of impending doom. During the 1930s alcohol allowed him to forget for a time his guilt about Zelda, his wasted potential, disappointing expeditions to Hollywood, weakening powers, declining sales, lack of money and psychological depression. Like William Styron, Fitzgerald used alcohol both "as the magical conduit to fantasy and euphoria and … as a means to calm the anxiety and incipient dread that I had hidden away for so long."
Well aware of the terrible effects of drink, Fitzgerald was unable to control his addiction and saw himself in the tradition of self-destructive American writers that had been initiated by Poe. When Scottie was in college he gave her dire warnings about liquor and threatened to go on his greatest nonstop binge if she ever touched a drink before she was twenty. When on the wagon, he would give his friends little lectures. "Drinking is slow death," he warned Robert Benchley, who promptly replied: "who's in a hurry?"16 Fitzgerald even collected photographs put out by a temperance society that showed the terrible effects of alcohol on the inner organs, and would morbidly study them-as he had pored over the ghastly photos of the war wounded-and joke about them in a menacing fashion.
Fitzgerald's alcoholism led to self-deception, violence and change of personality. His habit of needling people while drunk became a way to test how much Dos Passos, the Murphys, Hemingway and Edmund Wilson really liked him. If they could tolerate his worst behavior, then they were truly his friends. But most people were not very tolerant; and Fitzgerald kept a list of "Snubs," many of which occurred when he was drunk, that stretched over two decades. Scottie, whose childhood was dominated by alcoholic scenes, called him a boring, megalomaniacal and mean drunk. Liquor also loosened his tongue and released his sexual inhibitions. "When he was drunk," Sheilah Graham remarked, "he would have had an affair with a tree." Louis Bromfield gave a vivid account of Fitzgerald's alcoholic transformation and terrible behavior, which continued until he suddenly collapsed and passed out: "Like many others who got the name of being drunkards, Scott simply couldn't drink. One cocktail and he was off. It seemed to affect him as much as five or six drinks affected Hemingway and myself. Immediately he was out of control and there was only one end … that he became thoroughly drunk, and like many Irishmen, when he became drunk he usually became very disagreeable and rude and quarrelsome, as if all his resentments were released at once."
With Fitzgerald, as with Poe, there was a medical explanation for his alcoholism. Both writers suffered from hypoglycemia, or lack of sugar in the blood, which interfered with the supply of glucose to the brain and gave Fitzgerald an abnormal craving, when he was not drinking, for chocolate and Coca-Cola. This disease made it difficult for him to metabolize and tolerate alcohol, which always had an immediate and catastrophic effect on his system. Fitzgerald manifested many of the symptoms of hypoglycemia: insomnia, pallor and fatigue as well as aggressive speech, excessive sweating, visual blurring, muscular tremor, a sense of uncertainty, increasing confusion and, finally, unconsciousness.17 Hemingway might have been more compassionate about Fitzgerald's alcoholism had he known that it had a physical cause.
Like most of Fitzgerald's friends, Hemingway was physically attracted to Zelda. Describing their first meeting in A Moveable Feast, he praised her creamy complexion and gave her the same penetrating eyes he had attributed to his father in "Fathers and Sons": "Zelda was very beautiful and was tanned a lovely gold color and her hair was a beautiful dark gold and she was very friendly. Her hawk's eyes were clear and calm." But Zelda did not remain friendly for very long. Always wary of writers, Zelda became jealous of her husband's boyish enthusiasm for his hardboiled new friend. In contrast to Scott, she sensed Hemingway's disapproval, instinctively disliked him and considered him a threat to her marriage. Hemingway's self-conscious display of virility both irritated and menaced her. Attracted to more genteel, polished and deferential men, she provoked Hemingway's hostility by questioning his sexual power. She thought Hemingway was bogus and told him "no one is as masculine as you pretend to be." She tauntingly called him "a phony," "a sort of materialist mystic," "a professional he-man," "a pansy with hair on his chest."18 According to Zelda, The Sun Also Rises was about "bullfighting, bullslinging, and bullshitting."
Like Dos Passos, Hemingway realized that Zelda's intelligence was streaked with madness after she shocked him by declaring, with strange intensity: "Ernest, don't you think Al Jolson is greater than Jesus?" Hemingway agreed with Mencken that "Scott will never amount to a hoot in hell till he gets rid of his wife." He believed that Zelda encouraged him to waste his talent, and undermined his confidence as a man and writer. He saw Fitzgerald's energy and creativity dissipated in bursts of self-destruction.
In 1934, after Zelda had broken down and begun her long series of ineffectual treatments, and Fitzgerald's career seemed to be in decline, Hemingway told him, with brutal honesty: "Of all people on earth you needed discipline in your work and instead you marry someone who is jealous of your work, wants to compete with you and ruins you." At the same time Hemingway recognized Fitzgerald's responsibility for his drinking, his desperate love for Zelda and the overwhelming power of her personality: "It is not as simple as that and I thought Zelda was crazy the first time I met her and you complicated it even more by being in love with her and, of course, you're a rummy."19 Zelda may have contributed to Hemingway's hostile portrait of the beautiful, dominant and destructive Margot Macomber. There was a hardness beneath Zelda's soft exterior, and underneath that hardness a more vulnerable inner core.
Scott and Zelda's sexual problems, inherent from the beginning of their relationship, came glaringly to the surface during her affair with Jozan and intensified during the late 1920s. Though temperamentally attracted and emotionally attached to each other, they were sexually incompatible. Zelda was sensual; Scott, inhibited by Midwestern puritanism, was not. Other women Scott courted recalled that he could be a witty lover, especially when drink had loosened his tongue, but that he was not especially virile. Elizabeth Beckwith McKie (whom he had known in West Virginia) remembered him cheekily asking: "Are your breasts standing up like that for me?" But she unfavorably compared him to her more aggressive and more physically satisfying Southern beaux, and regretfully reported: "In 1917, I'm afraid, Scott just wasn't a very lively male animal."20
During the winter of 1926 the Fitzgeralds, who wanted to have a son, tried in vain to conceive another child. This failure, probably caused by the after-effects of her abortions, made Zelda increasingly unhappy, and provoked her to lash out at her husband's inadequacies. Comparing Scott unfavorably with Jozan, she began to complain that his penis was too small to give her sexual satisfaction. It was naive to blame the size of his organ for her lack of sexual orgasm, which was more likely to have had an emotional cause. But Scott's alcoholism undoubtedly affected his sexual capacity and may even have caused occasional impotence. Later on, as Zelda became obsessed with and exhausted by ballet dancing, their sexual relations gradually petered out and she began to accuse him of homosexuality.
Zelda also repeated the malicious charge of the homosexual expatriate writer Robert McAlmon, who called Fitzgerald and Hemingway a couple of queers. Though this charge was absurd, it wounded Scott and hurt his comradeship with men. One drunken night he took Morley Callaghan's arm and then dropped it. "It was like holding on to a cold fish," Scott told Callaghan. "You thought I was a fairy, didn't you?" Acknowledging in his Notebooks the effectiveness of McAlmon's malice, Fitzgerald sadly wrote of Hemingway: "I really loved him, but of course it wore out like a love affair. The fairies have spoiled all that."
Fitzgerald had (as Hemingway remarked) "pretty" feminine looks and once posed as an attractive girl in a Princeton musical. But he had failed as an athlete, soldier, drinker, brawler and sexual partner to his wife, was cruelly hurt by Zelda's accusations and became deeply worried about his masculinity. Edmund Wilson's diary of 1932 contains the earliest account of Fitzgerald's and Hemingway's response to Zelda's attempt at psychological castration, and of Scott's habit of asking strangers: "Do women like a man's private parts large or small?" Wilson recorded: "Hemingway said, Scott thinks that his penis is too small. (John Bishop had told me this and said that Scott was in the habit of making this assertion to anyone he met-to the lady who sat next to him at dinner and who might be meeting him for the first time.) I explained to him, Hemingway continued, that it only seemed to him small because he looked at it from above. You have to look at it in a mirror."21
In a notorious passage in Hemingway's A Moveable Feast (set during a lunch in Paris that probably took place in September 1931), Fitzgerald naively confessed: "You know I never slept with anyone except Zelda… Zelda said that the way I was built I could never make any woman happy and that was what upset her." After a personal inspection in the toilet (where the two men spent a surprising amount of time together), the patronizing Ernest reassured the pathetic Scott about his physical equipment: " 'You're perfectly fine,' I said. 'You are O.K. There's nothing wrong with you.' " When Fitzgerald asked: "But why would she say it?" Hemingway responded: "To put you out of business." Their exchange ended as Fitzgerald gratefully replied: "I wanted you to tell me truly," and Hemingway told the terrible truth: "Forget what Zelda said… Zelda is crazy… Zelda just wants to destroy you."
But Hemingway's account is highly suspect. Fitzgerald may have felt the need to humiliate himself before the intimidating Hemingway, but it is very doubtful that he would risk the possibility of a devastating confirmation of Zelda's charges. Fitzgerald's convincing statement in "The Crack-Up" that he slept with prostitutes at Princeton in 1917 and his affair with the English actress Rosalinde Fuller two years later cast serious doubt on Hemingway's assertion that Fitzgerald told him he had "never slept with anyone except Zelda." The phrase "tell me truly" sounds much more like Hemingway than like Fitzgerald. The "Matter of Measurements," as Hemingway called it, was rather meaningless without an erection. And if Fitzgerald was unwilling to hold Callaghan's arm, it is extremely unlikely that he would expose and arouse himself in front of Hemingway. In 1935 Fitzgerald told Lottie, a prostitute of mixed race in Asheville, North Carolina, that he had discussed the size of his penis with Hemingway. In Hemingway's version, they began with Scott examining Ernest's manuscripts and ended with Ernest examining Scott's cock. But there is a more plausible scenario. Hemingway, with characteristic exaggeration, probably transformed talking about Fitzgerald's small member at the table into actually showing it in the toilet. Hemingway may have magnified Fitzgerald's sexual innocence. But he was telling the truth about Zelda, who had undoubtedly attacked Scott's sexual capacity.
There is a surprising amount of evidence about Fitzgerald's sexual organ and sexual performance. The Esquire editor Arnold Gingrich, Fitzgerald's mistress Sheilah Graham and the prostitute Lottie all saw Fitzgerald's penis and agreed that it was adequate, perfectly normal and like that of other men.22 His problem was therefore more psychological than physical. He told Edmund Wilson that after Zelda's breakdown he had affairs with other women and worried because he "didn't get very excited by them." And he told another friend that he disliked those casual affairs and could not enjoy sex unless he was emotionally involved with the woman.
Lottie, in an unusual revelation, both described and explained the reasons for Scott's premature ejaculation, which had provoked Zelda's complaints:
He was nervous and I thought maybe that was why he was so quick about it. I asked him if that was his usual way and he said, yes… I remember him telling me that he only made love to help him write [through excitement and release]. No wonder he was so quick. He might know how to write but he sure doesn't know about this other thing… He believed the real reason for his hasty climax was fear and guilt, both going back to his boyish years of masturbating, a time when he thought sex was dirty and sinful.
Fitzgerald's perceptive St. Paul friend Oscar Kalman (in an interview with Arthur Mizener) confirmed Scott's puritanical inhibitions, lack of a powerful sexual urge and belief-which extended from adolescence into adult life-that sex was "dirty and sinful":
Scott was at bottom a very conventional man who shocked rather easily, who had some compulsion to shock, and who shocked himself more than he did others. He did things, or liked Zelda to do things, which did shock him. Scott had told [Kalman] about Zelda's living with him before they were married; a common enough thing, but Scott never got over being impressed by it. Scott liked the idea of sex, for its romance and daring, but was not strongly sexed and told Kalman-and a number of friends of his, including females-about his anxiety over the shortness of his penis. Kalman said that Scott was inclined to feel the actual act of sex was messy.23
Fitzgerald's flaws of character and sexual problems were not fully apparent in 1925, when Hemingway still trusted him as craftsman and critic, and deferred to him as the more experienced writer. They read and revised each other's work, and the passionate discussions about the art of fiction transcended their differences and drew them together. In A Moveable Feast Hemingway misleadingly stated that Fitzgerald "was upset because I would not show him the manuscript of the first draft of The Sun Also Rises." In fact, Fitzgerald read and corrected the novel. He had deleted what became his story "Absolution" from the original opening of The Great Gatsby and shrewdly advised Hemingway, who followed his advice, to delete the first two chapters of his new novel before sending it to the printer.
Their first novels, This Side of Paradise and The Sun Also Rises (1926), had much in common. Fitzgerald called his somewhat pretentious novel "A Romance and a Reading List," and characterized Hemingway's novel, which takes place in France and Spain, "A Romance and a Guide Book." Both books had bold heroines who defied moral conventions and influenced the social behavior of the postwar generation. But Hemingway's Brett Ashley-who lives from hand to mouth, cuts her hair like a boy's, gets drunk, has several adulterous affairs and loves a sexually incapacitated man-is, unlike Fitzgerald's flirtatious but chaste debutantes, a truly wild and reckless bohemian. In "Homage to Switzerland" (1933), Hemingway gently mocked Fitzgerald's sexless preppy girls when a traveling American asks a Swiss waitress, who has been to language school: "Were the Berlitz undergraduates a wild lot? What about all this necking and petting? Were there many smoothies? Did you ever run into Scott Fitzgerald?"24
Fitzgerald's suggestions about Hemingway's later work were less successful than his ideas about The Sun Also Rises. Hemingway also took his advice about cutting the opening anecdote of "Fifty Grand" (1927), though he later quoted the passage and regretted the deletion of "that lovely revelation of the metaphysics of boxing." But he rejected Fitzgerald's ludicrous recommendations about how to improve the ending of A Farewell to Arms (1929). Fitzgerald thought the novel would be more popular if Hemingway brought in the U.S. Marines and suggested that Frederic Henry read about their victory at Belleau Wood as Catherine Barkley is dying. Hemingway said that he had revised the ending of this novel thirty-two times, but he did not mention that a sentence from The Great Gatsby-"Then I went out of the room and down the marble steps into the rain"-directly inspired the famous conclusion of A Farewell to Arms: "After a while I went out and left the hospital and walked back to the hotel in the rain." Hemingway acknowledged, however, as Glenway Wescott later observed, that Fitzgerald, a loyal and devoted friend, "was truly more interested in my career at this point than in his own."25
Hemingway, who admired The Great Gatsby, tried to repay Fitzgerald by encouraging him during the long, difficult nine years between the publication of that novel and Tender Is the Night: "You just have to go on when it is worst and most [hopeless]-there is only one thing to do with a novel and that is go straight on through to the end of the damn thing." Hemingway, with much less money than Fitzgerald, had recently given up a salaried job on the Toronto Star in order to concentrate on serious art. He doubted Fitzgerald's claim that he wrote for eight hours a day, and thought the real problem was that Scott wasted his talent on stories for the Post and had nothing left over for his novel. Fitzgerald accepted Hemingway's idealistic belief that you had to worship at the altar of art "on your knees" and "with a pure heart," and told Perkins: "there's no point in trying to be an artist if you can't do your best." But he found it difficult to live up to these ideals and in 1929 confessed to Hemingway that he had sold out for money: "the Post now pays the old whore $4,000 a screw. But now it's because she's mastered the 40 positions-in her youth one was enough." Genuinely shocked by Fitzgerald's changing good stories to make them more salable (as he had suggested Hemingway do with the ending of A Farewell to Arms), Hemingway adopted Fitzgerald's word and called it "whoring." When Hemingway collected his stories in 1938 he rightly felt that all of them were worth reprinting. Fitzgerald, by contrast, deliberately included inferior stories to fill out his collections and, even then, reprinted less than one-third of the ones he had written. Hemingway's stories were not all first rate, but his standard was much higher than Fitzgerald's.
Hemingway felt that Fitzgerald was uneducated, unaware of the immutable laws of fiction and "did everything wrong," but managed to succeed because of his great natural talent. When Tender Is the Night finally appeared in 1934, Hemingway thought it was too autobiographical, too full of self-pity about Zelda's breakdown and madness, Scott's alcoholism and deterioration. The following year, in Green Hills of Africa, Hemingway used the unnamed Fitzgerald to exemplify an author who had declined and dried up: "Our writers when they have made some money increase their standard of living and they are caught. They have to write to keep up their establishments, their wives, and so on, and they write slop… Or else they read the critics… At present we have two good writers [Fitzgerald and Anderson] who cannot write because they have lost confidence through reading critics."26
Fitzgerald also met two important women writers when he moved to Paris in the spring of 1925. Hemingway introduced him to Gertrude Stein, who had studied with William James while at Radcliffe and had been trained as a doctor at Johns Hopkins, though she did not complete her medical degree. Rich and domineering, she weighed two hundred pounds, was one of the leading lesbians of the Left Bank and was still struggling to establish her literary reputation. Hemingway's description compared her Jewish features to those of an Italian and concentrated on her sensual hair: "Miss Stein was very big but not tall and was heavily built like a peasant woman. She had beautiful eyes and a strong German Jewish face that could also have been Friulano and reminded me of a northern Italian peasant woman with her clothes, her mobile face and her lovely, thick, alive immigrant hair." Stein's companion, Alice Toklas, an amiable gargoyle, resembled (according to Hadley Hemingway) "a little piece of electric wire, small and fine and very Spanish looking, very dark, with piercing dark eyes." Emphasizing Fitzgerald's rather appealing lack of self-confidence, Toklas remembered Stein's "unfailing appreciation of his work and belief in his gift-which he would not believe. I mean he did neither believe in his gift nor believe she meant what she told him about his work." The less tolerant Hemingway was actually annoyed about Fitzgerald's perverse refusal to accept Stein's sincere compliment and his attempt to distort her praise into a slighting remark.
At that time Stein, who had praised The Great Gatsby, admired Fitzgerald's work as much as she did Hemingway's. She was then preoccupied with generations, lost and new. In her third-person narrative The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas-written after she had quarreled with Hemingway, who refused to remain her disciple-she demoted Hemingway and placed Fitzgerald above him: "Gertrude Stein had been very much impressed by This Side of Paradise… She said of it that it was this book that really created for the public the new generation. She has never changed her opinion about this. She thinks this equally true of The Great Gatsby. She thinks Fitzgerald will be read when many of his well-known contemporaries [i.e., Hemingway] are forgotten."27 Toklas herself adored Fitzgerald, considered him her favorite young American writer and declared that "his intelligence, sensibility, distinction, wit and charm made his contemporaries [i.e., Hemingway] appear commonplace and lifeless."
Zelda, however, disliked Stein as much as she disliked Hemingway, and thought her involuted conversation was "sententious gibberish." Zelda irreverently told Edmund Wilson, who would write perceptively about the portentous mandarin in Axel's Castle (1931): "We went to Gertrude Stein's where a young poet vomited from sheer emotion and the atmosphere was hazy and oracular." Though Zelda avoided Stein in Paris, she received her in Baltimore in December 1934. Andrew Turnbull, then living in Baltimore, gave a dramatic account of Scott's attempt to dominate Zelda, her lively resistance to his demands and Stein's tactful acquiescence to Zelda's wishes:
During the visit, Zelda came in with some of her paintings, and Fitzgerald asked Miss Stein to take any ones she pleased. She chose two which Zelda had promised her doctor.
"But dear," said Fitzgerald, "you don't understand. Gertrude will hang them in her salon in Paris and you will be famous. She's been kinder to me than almost anyone and I'd like to give her something."
"If she has been as kind to you as my doctor has been to me," said Zelda, "you should give her everything you own but she can't have those paintings." In the end Miss Stein chose two others.
Turnbull also mentioned Stein's characteristically regal demeanor: "When Scottie appeared, Miss Stein drew from the pocket of her homespun skirt a handful of hazel nuts which she had gathered on her afternoon walk. She gave one to Scottie, who wanted it autographed. 'That would be appropriate,' said Miss Stein, inscribing it."28
The bohemian Stein, though a formidable personality, was less intimidating than Edith Wharton, who was then a much grander figure in the world of letters. While the egoistic Stein felt Fitzgerald's deferential reverence was entirely appropriate, the respectable and autocratic Wharton was embarrassed by his awkward and self-abasing homage. His behavior was intended to express his youthful admiration and respect for her art. But Fitzgerald could never quite bridge the gulf between himself and his artistic heroes. Instead of living up to the dramatic occasion, he nervously erupted in gaucherie with Galsworthy, Dreiser, Conrad and Wharton just as he later would with Isadora Duncan and James Joyce.
When Fitzgerald first met Wharton in Charles Scribner's office, just after his first novel was published in the spring of 1920, he impulsively threw himself at her feet and exclaimed: "Could I let the author of Ethan Frome pass through New York without paying my respects?" In July 1925, after receiving The Great Gatsby and complimenting him on the novel, Wharton invited the Fitzgeralds to tea at her home outside Paris. Zelda, remembering the boredom at Stein's salon and fearing she would be patronized by the grande dame, refused to go. So Scott took the young American composer Theodore Chanler. They had a few drinks on the way; and, as Zelda later wrote, "the nights, smelling of honeysuckle and army leather, staggered up the mountain side and settled upon Mrs. Edith Wharton's garden."
Their conversation was slow and awkward. Swaying against the mantelpiece, Fitzgerald proposed to enliven the dull tea party by telling a couple of "rather rough stories." After Wharton, by no means as stuffy as Fitzgerald imagined, had encouraged him to proceed (writes Wharton's biographer), he "got entangled in an anecdote about an American couple [perhaps himself and Zelda] who by mistake spent a night in a Paris bordello. His hostess, listening attentively, commented at last that the story 'lacks data'-the kind of rounded realistic information and description that the flustered Fitzgerald was unable to provide."29
Wharton made no effort to put her nervous guest at ease, deliberately led him into an awkward situation, which he was not quite drunk enough to ignore or to brazen out, and seemed to enjoy his discomfort. Though he certainly had the necessary "data," he felt he could not, under the circumstances, provide it. So his performance fell completely flat. After he left, Wharton remarked: "there must be something peculiar about that young man." But, according to Janet Flanner, Wharton maintained her admiration of his work and later spoke appreciatively of Fitzgerald.
In August 1925 the Fitzgeralds rejoined the Murphys, who had completed the Villa America, and moved into the Hotel du Cap in Antibes. Fitzgerald celebrated this idyllic place and its devout sun worshipers in the alluring, chromatic opening paragraphs of Tender Is the Night: "The hotel and its bright tan prayer rug of a beach were one. In the early morning the distant image of Cannes, the pink and cream of the old fortifications, the purple Alp that bounded Italy, were cast across the water." He sent Bishop a characteristically sparkling list of celebrities who gathered in Antibes that summer and who seemed to re-create the Great Neck parties in a more exotic setting: Esther, Gerald and Sara Murphy, Dos Passos, MacLeish, Max Eastman, Floyd Dell, the screenwriter Charlie Brackett, the mystery writer E. Phillips Oppenheim, Rudolph Valentino, the French singer Mistinguett, the actress Alice Terry and her husband, the film director Rex Ingram, the violinist David Mannes, the soprano Marguerite Namara, ex-premier Vittorio Orlando of Italy and the art connoisseur Count Etienne de Beaumont. A real place to rough it, he added, and escape from the world. The Fitzgeralds almost made their escape complete one drunken evening when their car stalled and they fell asleep on some dangerous trolley tracks. Early the next morning, a peasant awakened them minutes before a trolley smashed their car to pieces. Fitzgerald described their life during this pleasant but wasteful period as "1,000 parties and no work."
In November 1925 the Fitzgeralds returned to England, once again equipped with useful introductions to well-placed people. Through Tallulah Bankhead, a girlhood friend of Zelda, they went to some "high tone" parties with the Mountbattens and the Marchioness of Milford Haven. "Very impressed, but not very," Fitzgerald told Perkins, with newly acquired English nonchalance, "as I furnished most of the amusement myself." Fitzgerald's visit to his new London publisher, Chatto & Windus, without first making an appointment, was more significant. The novelist Frank Swinnerton, who received him, recalled:
I went from my office to the waiting-room, where a young man sat, with his hat on, at a small table. He did not rise or remove his hat, and he did not answer my greeting, so I took another chair, expressing regret that no partner was available, and asking if there was anything I could do. Assuming, I suppose, that I was some base hireling, he continued brusque to the point of truculence; but we spoke of the purpose of his visit, and after a few moments he silently removed his hat. Two minutes later, looking rather puzzled, he rose. I did the same. I spoke warmly of The Great Gatsby; and his manner softened. He became an agreeable boy, quite ingenuous and inoffensive, and finally asked my name. I told him. If I had said "The Devil" he could not have been more horrified. Snatching up his hat in consternation, he cried: "Oh, my God! Nocturne's one of my favorite books!" and dashed out of the premises.30
In this encounter between a poised Englishman and a bumbling American, Swinnerton, completely in control of the situation, brought Fitzgerald round from rudeness to adoration. Their meeting revealed the uncomfortably defensive and effusive aspects of Fitzgerald's character, and suggested that far from being at ease in English society, he got on with Swinnerton no better than he had with Galsworthy, Mackenzie and Rebecca West. In the end, he had to rush out of the room in acute embarrassment.
Fitzgerald, to his intense irritation, had much less of a reputation in England than in America. He was virtually ignored by the critics from the early 1920s until after World War II and none of his books sold well there during his lifetime. Though Thomas Hardy, shortly before his death, said he "had read and been greatly impressed by This Side of Paradise" and that Fitzgerald "was one of the few younger American writers whose work he followed with any interest," the Times Literary Supplement correctly stated that "when Fitzgerald died in 1940 his work, outside a small circle, was hardly known in this country."
Fitzgerald had been in London when William Collins brought out This Side of Paradise in May 1921 and had told an editor friend that the book was "having a checkered career in England." The Manchester Guardian dismissively concluded: "But what people! What a set! They are well lost." And the Times Literary Supplement disagreed with the American critics who had found the novel original and exuberant. Setting the critical tone for the next twenty years, its anonymous reviewer rejected the novel as trivial, unconvincing and "rather tiresome; its values are less human than literary, and its characters … with hardly an exception, a set of exasperating poseurs, whose conversation, devoted largely to minute self-analysis, is artificial beyond belief."31 The novel, which had required twelve printings and sold 49,000 copies during its first year in America, bombed in England with a sale of only 700.
Flappers and Philosophers, The Beautiful and Damned and Tales of the Jazz Age, also published by Collins, did not receive serious critical attention. When Scribner's sent Fitzgerald's masterpiece, The Great Gatsby, to Collins, he invented a rather absurd reason to reject an author whose books had been losing money for the firm. "We do not at all like to part with Scott Fitzgerald, but we feel very strongly that to publish The Great Gatsby would be to reduce the number of his readers rather than to increase them," he explained to Perkins, who passed the bad news on to Fitzgerald in October 1925. "The point is, that the atmosphere of the book is extraordinarily foreign to the English reader, and he simply would not believe in it, and therefore I am regretfully returning it to you." Fitzgerald justly complained that the publisher had rejected his serious and encouraged his frivolous work: "Collins never believed in me. (He always wanted me to write [another] 'Offshore Pirate.') I know my public in England is small-but I have had enough enthusiastic letters to know it exists." Though Chatto & Windus published The Great Gatsby in 1926, his last two collections of stories, All the Sad Young Men and Taps at Reveille, have never appeared in England.
The Great Gatsby received excellent notices from two American critics, Gilbert Seldes and Conrad Aiken, in T. S. Eliot's magazine, The Criterion. Eliot himself, an editor at Faber, had been enthusiastic about the novel and hoped his firm would publish it. But the English reviewers were much less keen. The Times Literary Supplement acknowledged that it was "undoubtedly a work of art and of great promise"-though its promise had surely been fulfilled-but complained about the unpleasantness of the characters. And the novelist L. P. Hartley offered a condescending admonition: "Mr. Scott Fitzgerald deserves a good shaking. Here is an unmistakable talent unashamed of making itself a motley to the view. The Great Gatsby is an absurd story, whether considered as romance, melodrama, or plain record of New York high life." Fitzgerald, perhaps unduly touchy, as he had been with Swinnerton, continued to feel that Chatto & Windus was snubbing him. In January 1930 he complained to Perkins about a commonplace business reply: "they answered a letter of mine on the publication of [The Great Gatsby] with the signature (Chatto & Windus, per Q), undoubtedly an English method of showing real interest in one's work."32 Though Fitzgerald admired Oxford, which had played a prominent role in The Great Gatsby, he lost interest in England after Collins dropped him. He never returned there after his second visit and was consistently hostile to the English in his work.
Two months after their visit to England, in January 1926, the Fitzgeralds left Paris again. Zelda had been suffering from colitis and persistent gynecological problems; and they decided to spend a cold and restful winter in the western Pyrenees between Bayonne and Pau. In January Fitzgerald wrote to Harold Ober: "We have come to a lost little village called Salies-de-Bearn in the Pyrenees where my wife is to take a special treatment of baths for eleven months for an illness that has run now for almost a year. Here they have the strongest salt springs in the world-and out of season nothing much else-we are two of the seven guests in the only open hotel." After the excitement of Paris and London, however, the place was too boring to endure. Scott told a friend that the other inhabitants were two goats and a paralytic, and Zelda's rest cure was reduced from eleven months to only one. In June 1926 Zelda, on a quick trip to Paris, had her appendix out at the American Hospital, but continued to feel unwell.
In March they returned to the Riviera for a nine-month stay in Juan-les-Pins, just next to Antibes. They spent the first two months in the Villa Paquita, which Fitzgerald found too damp and uncomfortable. When the Hemingways arrived for the summer, Fitzgerald generously gave them the villa and moved to the more suitable Villa St. Louis. The large house was wonderfully situated on the coast, with the beach and the Casino nearby, and they looked forward to a marvelous summer.
At a farewell party for the critic Alexander Woollcott and other friends, Zelda (chirpy again) did her by-now-familiar but always welcome striptease. After speeches had been made, she daringly declared: "I have been so touched by all these kind words. But what are words? Nobody has offered our departing heroes any gifts to take with them. I'll start off"-and she stepped out of her black lace panties and threw them at the grateful men. Not content with her own performance, Zelda also dared Scott (as she had dared him to fight the bouncer in the Jungle Club) to make some dangerous high dives from the cliffs into the sea-and forced him to accept her challenge.
One evening when the Fitzgeralds were dining outdoors with the Murphys at the Colombe d'Or in Vence, a lovely village in the Maritime Alps above Juan-les-Pins, Zelda took an even more dramatic dive. "Isadora Duncan was giving one of her last parties at the next table," Zelda wrote. "She had got too old and fat to care whether people accepted her theories of life and art, and she gallantly toasted the world's obliviousness in lukewarm champagne. There were village dogs baying at a premature white exhausted August moon and there were long dark shadows folded accordion-like along the steps of the steep streets of Saint-Paul."33 Zelda portrayed the dancer who provoked the scene as unattractive and described the fateful evening as if nothing extraordinary had occurred. But the steep stone steps and the long dark shadows suggest an ominous event. Isadora, reputed to be free with her favors, had summoned Fitzgerald to her table. He sat at her feet while she ran her jeweled fingers through his blond hair and called him "my centurion." Zelda, who liked to be the center of attention and resented this seductive behavior, suddenly got up from the table and-in her second attempt at self-destruction-threw herself down a long flight of steps. Though cut and bleeding, she was not badly hurt and offered no explanation for her bizarre act. The Murphys knew something was seriously wrong with Zelda, but did not suspect that she was mentally ill.
Though Fitzgerald was nearly thirty, he continued his heavy drinking and ludicrous pranks. During the summer of 1926 Scott and his Riviera friends lured a hotel orchestra to his villa, locked them in a room with a bottle of whiskey and sat down outside the closed door for a private concert of their favorite music. They made an amateur silent film, with an incestuous Japanese hero, on the grounds of the Hotel du Cap, and painted the obscene titles on the walls of a friend's villa. Some of these high-spirited adventures found their way into Tender Is the Night. Abe North, for example, kidnaps a waiter from a cafe in Cannes in order to saw him in two and find out what is inside. " 'Old menus,' suggested Nicole with a short laugh. 'Pieces of broken china and tips and pencil stubs.' 'Exactly [said Abe]-but the thing was to prove it scientifically. And of course doing it with that musical saw would have eliminated any sordidness.' "
But the pranks that had once been playful and innocent now became menacing and malicious. They raided a restaurant in Cannes, captured the owner and waiters, and threatened to push them off a cliff. One late night outside the Casino at Juan-les-Pins an old lady offered them a tray of daintily arranged nuts and candies. As they stopped to admire the display, Fitzgerald made an ugly scene by kicking the tray and sending all the sweetmeats into the street. He was repentant, Sara Murphy recalled, and immediately tried "to make amends by offering her his apologies and hundreds of francs. He always realized when he had gone too far, & was very sorry & mortified." But the damage had been done-both to the old lady and to his reputation. Fitzgerald certainly helped create the image of the rich and vulgar American in France.
The Murphys could apparently take anything: practical jokes, figs down backs, broken stemware, flying ashtrays, thrown garbage, kicked trays, drunken brawls, passing out and tedious analytical questions as well as Zelda's public disrobing and attempts at suicide. No matter what the Fitzgeralds did, they were always forgiven by their devoted friends. Gerald's moving letter of farewell, for example, echoed the second chapter of the Song of Solomon to express the intensity of their affection for the Fitzgeralds and-though the hush and emptiness must have been a welcome relief-the genuine sorrow they felt when their friends had left the Riviera:
There really was a great sound of tearing heard in the land as your train pulled out that day. Sara and I rode back together saying things about you both to each other which only partly expressed what we felt separately. Ultimately, I suppose, one must judge the degree of one's love for a person by the hush and the emptiness that descends upon the day,-after the departure. We heard the tearing because it was there,-and because we weren't able to talk much about how much we do love you two. We agreed that it made us very sad, and sort of hurt a little-for a "summer holiday."34
Fitzgerald's third volume of stories, All the Sad Young Men, was published in February 1926, ten months after The Great Gatsby. There was a striking difference between the three best stories-"Absolution" (1924), "Winter Dreams" (1922) and "The Rich Boy" (1926)-and the six mediocre ones that filled out the collection. It is significant that none of his best works was published in the Saturday Evening Post.
"Absolution," Fitzgerald's most Catholic story, was originally intended to explain Jay Gatz's background, but was deleted from the novel because Fitzgerald wished to preserve a sense of mystery about his hero. This story-with its disillusioned, ironic tone; its pure, detached style; its oblique, suggestive technique; and its subtle, elusive themes-is deeply indebted to Joyce's Dubliners (1914). The homosexual temptation and death of the priest, in fact, evolve directly from "An Encounter" and "The Sisters" in that volume, just as the prurient priest and the insincere confession of sexual offenses derive from Molly Bloom's soliloquy in the last chapter of Ulysses.
The opening paragraph of "Absolution" is brilliantly evocative:
There was once a priest with cold, watery eyes, who, in the still of the night, wept cold tears. He wept because the afternoons were warm and long, and he was unable to attain a complete mystical union with our Lord. Sometimes, near four o'clock, there was a rustle of Swede girls along the path by his window, and in their shrill laughter he found a terrible dissonance that made him pray aloud for the twilight to come… He had found the scent of cheap toilet soap desperately sweet upon the air. He passed that way when he returned from hearing confessions on Saturday nights, and he grew careful to walk on the other side of the street so that the smell of the soap would float upward before it reached his nostrils as it drifted, rather like incense, toward the summer moon.
The cold eyes of the tormented Father Schwartz contrast with the warm night of the town and intensify the irony of his impossible desire to attain complete mystical union with Jesus. In a similar fashion, the scent of the cheap toilet soap undermines the ironic comparison to incense as the priest, aroused by the sexual secrets of the confessional, is torn between spiritual yearning and sensual desire. The summer moon, which symbolizes his temptation at the beginning of the story, concludes the tale by shining on the scented Swede girls, lying amidst the wheat with their young farmboys and achieving the physical gratification denied to the priest.
The priest's vague but powerful desire immediately focuses on the beautiful, blue-eyed, eleven-year-old Rudolph Miller. In a flashback at the end of section I, to three days earlier, Rudolph dutifully confesses seven sins. But he then lies in the confessional by stating that he never tells lies. Like the young Fitzgerald, Rudolph considers himself too good to be his parents' son and invents a suave alter ego, with the absurd name of Blatchford Sarnemington, which allows him to escape from sin and from the need to deceive God. Rudolph plans to evade communion, while in a state of sin, by drinking a glass of water before church. But when his father catches him in the act, he tells the truth (when he could easily have lied, as he had lied to the priest) by admitting that he has not yet tasted the water.
After being beaten by his father (like the innocent child in Joyce's "Counterparts"), Rudolph goes to a second confession. But he does not admit that he lied in the first one, and takes communion in a state of sin. When the story returns to the present in the final section, Father Schwartz, instead of providing discipline and giving penance, tells Rudolph about "the glimmering places," which the priest associates with amusement parks (like the one in Joyce's "Araby"). But the priest also brings himself back to reality by warning the boy: "don't get up close … because if you do you'll only feel the heat and the sweat and the life." This lesson conveyed, Father Schwartz collapses into death. Unable to live up to his religious ideals, the priest cannot provide the necessary comfort during the spiritual crisis of a confused, guilt-ridden boy. Both fathers, natural and spiritual, have failed Rudolph, who never receives the long-sought absolution.
The plots and themes of "Winter Dreams" and "The Rich Boy" are similar. In the former, a poor boy, Dexter Green, falls in love with a rich girl, Judy Jones. He loses her, becomes engaged to and then abandons a poor substitute for his true love. At the end of the story, he discovers that Judy is unhappily married and that her looks have faded. Dexter is shattered by this news because he too has lost his illusions of beauty and perfection: "He had thought that having nothing else to lose he was invulnerable at last-but he knew that he had just lost something more, as surely as if he had married Judy Jones and seen her fade away before his eyes. The dream was gone. Something had been taken from him… Even the grief he could have borne was left behind in the country of illusion, of youth, of the richness of life, where his winter dreams had flourished."
In the latter story, a rich boy, Anson Hunter, loves a rich girl, Paula Legendre, but loses her and becomes involved with an inferior girl, Dolly Karger. Hunter retaliates for his own emotional vacuity by abandoning Dolly and by driving his aunt's lover to suicide. Later on, he encounters Paula, who has had an unhappy first marriage but is now contentedly pregnant by her second husband. At the end of the story, Hunter learns that Paula has died in childbirth.
In one story differences in money and class are the obstacles to love; in the other, the obstacles are great egoism and great wealth. Both works describe the hero's life from boyhood to his early thirties. Both stories portray the destructive power of beautiful women, ephemeral happiness, the reluctance to abandon illusory dreams, the sense of loss and the impossibility of achieving true love. But Anson Hunter is a more fully developed character than Dexter Green and is portrayed in a more substantial social context. Like the Patches in The Beautiful and Damned, the Buchanans in The Great Gatsby and the Warrens in Tender Is the Night, Hunter expresses Fitzgerald's fascination with the superiority, the selfishness and the emptiness of the rich. "They are different from you and me," he writes at the beginning of the story. "They possess and enjoy early, and it does something to them, makes them soft where we are hard, and cynical where we are trustful, in a way that, unless you were born rich, it is very difficult to understand."35 Hunter also shows that money can fatally weaken the will and lead to a meaningless life.
Dexter Green is cruelly manipulated by Judy Jones (based on Ginevra King) who "treated him with interest, with encouragement, with malice, with indifference, with contempt." Though Anson Hunter dominates his women, he is incapable of emotional commitment and deprives himself of a married life and a settled-rather than a dissipated-existence. Fitzgerald based "The Rich Boy" on the confidential revelations of his hard-drinking Princeton friend, Ludlow Fowler. Though Hunter is portrayed negatively, Fitzgerald somehow thought Fowler would be pleased by the tale. "It is in a large measure the story of your life," he wrote Fowler in 1925, "toned down here and there and simplified. Also many gaps had to come out of my imagination. It is frank, unsparing but sympathetic and I think you will like it-it is one of the best things I have ever done." When Hemingway read the story, Fitzgerald told Fowler, he said the real Anson would have raped Dolly instead of abandoning the seduction. And, Fitzgerald added, "I hadn't the privilege of telling him that, in life, he did!"36
The reviews of All the Sad Young Men were generally favorable. In Fitzgerald's hometown paper, the Minneapolis Journal, Thomas Boyd loyally wrote that "Absolution" reveals a "perfection of mood, of form and implication… Everything that Scott Fitzgerald writes contains something that is worth reading." Harry Hansen, in the Chicago Daily News, was enthusiastic about Fitzgerald's versatility and style, but rightly thought the deeper meaning and greater art made In Our Time superior to Fitzgerald's collection. The stories give, he wrote, "excellent proof of his ability to write well in half a dozen manners. It is a joy to read these tales. They lack sameness; they are ironical, and sad, and jolly good fun by turns; they scintillate." And in the Saturday Review, William Rose Benet, more perceptive than the other critics, admired Fitzgerald's originality, but saw that he was torn by the conflict between money and art: "His ingenuity at evolving marketable ideas is extraordinary. But one naturally feels, behind most of the writing in this book, the pressure of living conditions rather than the demand of the spirit. As a writer of short stories the author more displays his astonishing facility than the compulsions of his true nature." The positive reviews helped to sell more than 16,000 copies in 1926, and the collection earned nearly four thousand dollars.
Fitzgerald had completed The Great Gatsby in Europe in 1924. But he had become blocked on an early-and subsequently rejected-draft of Tender Is the Night and had done no serious work since then. He had squandered his money, his life was chaotic, his marriage was disintegrating and he was drinking heavily. Just before he sailed from Genoa in December 1926 on the Conte Biancamano-with the familiar intention to save money and devote himself to fiction-he wrote Hemingway (as Murphy had written him): "I can't tell you how much our friendship has meant to me during this year and a half-it is the brightest thing in our trip to Europe for me."37 For the rest of his life Hemingway was his ideal reader. Scott always sought and respected his good opinion, and was desperately eager to know if Ernest approved of his work.
1. Quoted in Mizener, Far Side of Paradise, p. 193; Zelda Fitzgerald, Save Me the Waltz, Collected Writings, p. 95; Frances Fitzgerald Smith, F. Scott Fitzgerald and Ernest M. Hemingway in Paris, n.p.
2. Hemingway, Selected Letters, p. 689; Ernest Hemingway, The Sun Also Rises (1926; New York, 1954), p. 44; Ernest Hemingway, Across the River and into the Trees (New York, 1950), p. 45.
3. Fitzgerald, Letters, p. 322; Hemingway, Selected Letters, p. 176; Fitzgerald, "Author's House," Afternoon of an Author, p. 186; Janet Flanner, Paris Was Yesterday, 1925-1939, ed. Irving Drutman (New York, 1972), p. xix.
4. Dear Scott/Dear Max, p. 194; Hemingway, Selected Letters, pp. 162-163; Fitzgerald, Letters, pp. 503-504; Quoted in James Woodress, Booth Tarkington, Gentleman from Indiana (Philadelphia, 1954), p. 265.
5. Meyers, Hemingway, p. 159; Glenway Wescott, in Fitzgerald, Crack-Up, p. 325; Dear Scott/Dear Max, p. 78.
6. Fitzgerald, In His Own Time, pp. 148-149; Fitzgerald, Correspondence, p. 183; Dear Scott/Dear Max, pp. 127, 131.
7. Ernest Hemingway, The Torrents of Spring (1926; London, 1966), p. 92; Fitzgerald, In His Own Time, p. 275.
8. Fitzgerald, Notebooks, p. 319; Hemingway, Selected Letters, p. 483; Hemingway, A Moveable Feast (1964; New York, 1965), p. 147.
9. Hemingway, Selected Letters, p. 438. Clemenceau, whom Hemingway had interviewed in 1922, said: "America is the only nation in history which miraculously has gone directly from barbarism to degeneration without the usual interval of civilization" (John Bartlett, Familiar Quotations, 15th ed., Boston, 1980, p. 643). Henry Adams has also been credited with this mot: "American society was the first in history to go from barbarism to decadence without passing through an intervening stage of civilization" (quoted in Aldrich, Old Money, p. 46). And in his essay on A. E. Housman in The Triple Thinkers (1938), Edmund Wilson wrote that the poet "has managed to grow old without in a sense ever knowing maturity" (London, 1962, p. 84). Fitzgerald may actually have said something like this to Hemingway, for in unpublished notes Scott wrote that growing up was "a terribly hard thing to do. It is so much easier to skip it and go from one childhood to another" (quoted in Donaldson, Fool for Love, p. 214).
10. James Thurber, "Scott in Thorns," Reporter, 4 (April 17, 1951), 36; Letter from Joan Kennedy Taylor to Jeffrey Meyers, April 22, 1992.
11. Dear Scott/Dear Max, p. 41; Wilson, "Imaginary Conversations," p. 254; Hemingway, Selected Letters, p. 165. Hemingway came close to realizing this fantasy in the early 1930s when he had a house with wife and children in Key West and a beautiful American mistress, Jane Mason, in Havana.
12. Hemingway, A Moveable Feast, p. 182; Edmund Wilson, "That Summer in Paris" (1963), The Bit Between My Teeth (New York, 1965), p. 522; Fitzgerald, Letters, p. 365.
13. Fitzgerald, Letters, p. 326; Dear Scott/Dear Max, p. 177; Fitzgerald, Notebooks, p. 326; Fitzgerald, Correspondence, p. 243; Hemingway, Selected Letters, p. 877.
14. Quoted in Sotheby Parke Bernet, Fine Modern First Editions (New York, October 25, 1977), lot 425, letter of September 16, 1951; Quoted in Turnbull, Scott Fitzgerald, p. 41; Hemingway, A Moveable Feast, p. 179.
15. William James, Varieties of Religious Experience (1902; New York, 1958), p. 297; Fitzgerald, Tender Is the Night, p. 103; Fitzgerald, "A New Leaf," Short Stories, p. 637.
16. Laura Hearne, "A Summer with Scott Fitzgerald," p. 260; William Styron, Darkness Visible (New York, 1990), p. 40; Corey Ford, Time of Laughter (Boston, 1967), p. 164.
17. Quoted in Donaldson, Fool for Love, p. 214; Quoted in Mizener, Far Side of Paradise, pp. 84-85; The Oxford Textbook of Medicine, ed. D. J. Weatherall et al. (Oxford, 1987), 9:95.
18. Hemingway, A Moveable Feast, pp. 183-184; Quoted in Esther Murphy Arthur, "A Farewell to Hemingway," 1961, BBC Archives; Quoted in Sara Mayfield, Exiles from Paradise: Zelda and Scott Fitzgerald (1971; New York, 1974), pp. 137, 141.
19. Quoted in Milford, Zelda, p. 156; Hemingway, A Moveable Feast, p. 184; Charles Angoff, H. L. Mencken: A Portrait from Memory (New York, 1956), p. 99; Hemingway, Selected Letters, p. 408.
20. Quoted in Donaldson, Fool for Love, p. 52; Elizabeth Beckwith MacKie, "My Friend, Scott Fitzgerald," Fitzgerald-Hemingway Annual, 2 (1970), 20-21.
21. Callaghan, That Summer in Paris, p. 207; Fitzgerald, Notebooks, p. 17; Quoted in Bruccoli, Some Sort of Epic Grandeur, p. 272; Edmund Wilson, The Thirties (New York, 1980), p. 303.
22. Hemingway, A Moveable Feast, pp. 188-189. See Arnold Gingrich, "Coming to Terms with Scott and Ernest," Esquire, 99 (June 1983), 56; Sheilah Graham, A State of Heat (New York, 1972), p. 146; and Buttitta, Lost Summer, p. 113.
23. Mizener's notes on his conversation with Wilson, Princeton; Quoted in Buttitta, Lost Summer, pp. 56, 113, 134; Mizener's notes on his conversation with Oscar Kalman, Princeton.
24. Hemingway, A Moveable Feast, p. 182; Fitzgerald, Notebooks, p. 158; Hemingway, Short Stories, p. 426.
25. Ernest Hemingway, "The Art of the Short Story," Paris Review, 79 (1981), 89; Letter from Hemingway to Mizener, February 1, 1951, McKeldin Library, University of Maryland; Fitzgerald, Great Gatsby, p. 97.
26. Hemingway, Selected Letters, p. 306; Dear Scott/Dear Max, p. 102; Fitzgerald, Letters, p. 327; Ernest Hemingway, Green Hills of Africa (New York, 1935), p. 23.
27. Hemingway, A Moveable Feast, p. 14; Ruth Sokoloff, Hadley: The First Mrs. Hemingway (New York, 1973), p. 50; Alice B. Toklas, Staying on Alone: Letters, ed. Edward Burns (New York, 1973), p. 169; Gertrude Stein, The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas (New York, 1933), p. 218.
28. Alice B. Toklas, "Between Classics," New York Times Book Review, March 4, 1951, p. 4; Yorke, "Zelda: A Worksheet," p. 220; Turnbull, Scott Fitzgerald, pp. 258-259.
29. Quoted in Mizener, Far Side of Paradise, p. 168; Zelda Fitzgerald, "Show Mr. and Mrs. F. to Number--," Crack-Up, p. 43; R. W. B. Lewis, Edith Wharton (New York, 1975), p. 468. In an appendix to his biography, Lewis prints "Beatrice Palmato," Wharton's astonishing pornographic fragment. Had Fitzgerald known about her taste for louche anecdotes, he would surely have provided the necessary data.
30. Fitzgerald, Tender Is the Night, p. 3; Fitzgerald, Ledger, p. 179; Dear Scott/Dear Max, p. 127; Frank Swinnerton, Figures in the Foreground (New York, 1964), p. 158.
31. Henry Dan Piper, "Fitzgerald, Mark Twain and Thomas Hardy," Fitzgerald Newsletter, ed. Matthew Bruccoli (Washington, D.C., 1969), p. 31; "Power Without Glory," Times Literary Supplement, January 20, 1950, p. 40; Fitzgerald, Correspondence, p. 84; "Young America?" Manchester Guardian, May 27, 1921, p. 5; "New Novels-This Side of Paradise," Times Literary Supplement, June 23, 1951, p. 402.
32. Dear Scott/Dear Max, p. 121; "New Novels-The Great Gatsby," Times Literary Supplement, February 18, 1926, p. 116; L. P. Hartley, "New Fiction," Saturday Review, February 20, 1926, p. 234; Fitzgerald, Letters, p. 237.
33. As Ever, Scott Fitz, p. 84; Grace Moore, You're Only Human Once (Garden City, New York, 1944), p. 114; Zelda Fitzgerald, "Auction-Model 1934," Crack-Up, p. 58 (this work is attributed to Zelda in Scott's Ledger).
34. Fitzgerald, Tender Is the Night, p. 32; Letter from Sara Murphy to Mizener, January 17, 1950, Princeton; Fitzgerald, Correspondence, p. 178.
35. Fitzgerald, "Absolution," Short Stories, pp. 259, 271; Fitzgerald, "Winter Dreams," Short Stories, pp. 235-236; Fitzgerald, "The Rich Boy," Short Stories, p. 318.
36. Fitzgerald, "Winter Dreams," Short Stories, p. 228; Fitzgerald, Correspondence, pp. 152, 182.
37. Thomas Boyd, "Genius and Pains," Minneapolis Journal, March 7, 1926, Editorial section, p. 11; Fitzgerald, In His Own Time, p. 365, 368; Fitzgerald, Letters, p. 318.
Next: chapter 8.
Published as Scott Fitzgerald: A Biography by Jeffrey Meyers (NY. Harper-Collins, 1994).