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Bennett CerfBennett Cerf
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Ernst said, “Great, great.” He loves publicity just as much as I do!

So I wrote over to Joyce care of Sylvia Beach where I knew he made his headquarters. I said I was coming to Europe and I'd love to meet him in Paris to see if we could work out a way of publishing Ulysses officially in America. I got back a letter that he'd be delighted to meet me. Why not? He'd never gotten a penny out of America before. Maybe this was opening a door for him!

So on the morning agreed upon I walked into Shakespeare and Company and there was James Joyce sitting with a bandage around his head, a patch over his eye, his arm in a sling and his foot all bound up and stretched up on a chair. He looked like one of those characters in “The Spirit of '76.” I retreated a pace, and Miss Beach, a very lovely, gray-haired lady, said, “Oh, Mr. Cerf, don't think he always looks that way. He was so excited about meeting you that on his way here he was run over by a taxicab. But he insisted on seeing you today because he needs some money, and he thinks maybe you're going to get some for him.”

I said, “Well, I'm certainly ready to give him some.”

The eye-patch, I learned later, he always wore, but the other damages were temporary.

Well, we started talking. I said, “I don't know whether we can win this case or not, but I do think the climate is changing in America.” Mind you, money was different in those days. I said, “I'd like to give you $1500 with the understanding

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