Original Watercolors of The Little Prince

thelittleprince_morgan1 thelittleprince_morgan2 thelittleprince_morgan3 thelittleprince_morgan4 thelittleprince_morgan5 thelittleprince_morgan6 thelittleprince_morgan7 thelittleprince_morgan8 thelittleprince_morgan9 thelittleprince_morgan10 MA 2592.32 Saint-ExupeÌry, Antoine de, 1900-1944.   Le petit prince et la main du pilote tenant un marteau  [New York, 1942]

In April of 1943, shortly after the book came out, 43-year-old Saint-Exupéry shoved his Little Prince manuscripts and drawings in a brown paper bag, handing it to his friend Silvia Hamilton — “I’d like to give you something splendid,” he told her, “but this is all I have.” — and departed for Algiers as a military pilot with the Free French Air Force.

He was eight years over the age limit for pilots in such squadrons, so he petitioned relentlessly for exemption until it was finally granted by General Dwight Eisenhower.

On July 31, 1944, he left on a reconnaissance mission, never to return. He was 44 years old when he perished — a biographical detail that lends eerie poignancy to the fact that, perched atop his little planet, the Little Prince watched the sun set exactly 44 times.