526 West 113th Street
June 29, 1945
Professor Robert H. Pfeiffer
Dear Professor Pfeiffer,
In February, the Oxford University Press returned the Ms to me, after they have kept it for over a year. They were anxious to print the book, but they reached their decision, because two scholars who read the work disagreed, one being very enthusiastic about the work, the other being decidedly against it. They interpreted your letter to them as also against the Ms: you declined to read the work, but in your answer there was a valuation, based on a previous reading (10 contra 90). So there were two readers against one.
Since the time you had the Mns for a few days in the summer 1942, and till the summer 1944, I enlarged the work three times, rewrote it, and per chance in its full form, it could help you to conquer your doubts (shaken but not converted). The Oxford Press related your valuation to the final form of the work.
The fact is that until now no scholar who read the work was able to make an objection or give a proof against my work, or show a difficulty to which my reconstruction leads. Your only suggestion to prove my thesis also on art-objects, I fulfilled in the new version of my work, and I did it extensively.
You wrote me in a number of letters (esp. August 24, 1942, when under a fresh impression after the reading) encouraging words and advised me to print my work. In the case of the Oxford Press, it happened, which can easily happen to me, that the reader who was against my book, was the author of the books assailed by me in my work. I showed which would be the correct conclusions, if this author were not guided by the conventional chronology. He was defendant and judge in one. How can I then come to print, if I fail to comply with the maxim: Quod semper, quod ubique, quod ab omnibus, creditum est, ho est vere proprieque studium?
I intend now to send my work to the Harvard University Pressnot to any of its seriesbut to the general department.
Of course, I would consider it a high privilege, if you
will consent to be the reader of my work for the Press. But were this
entirely impossible, which I would regret very much, would you suggest
a reader who is also independent inhis judgements, and fearless in matters