ALFRED JARRY is chiefly known as the creator of UBU, the anti-hero of what is acknowledged as the first "absurd" drama, but this was only one facet of a writer now seen as one of the most vital (and peculiar) influences on the French literature of this century. Visits of Love was Jarry's second novel, originally written for a publisher specialising in erotica (who must have been perplexed by the result). The "visits" consist of a remarkable series of tableaux, dialogues and assignations which deviously undermine the dreary situations of conventional erotic writing. They become more and more extravagant, transcending the everyday, passing beyond death, returning to bizarre versions of historical myths, or to the lavatorial trysts of Madame Ubu. Jarry's intricate style is pushed to its furthest limits, from crude buffoonery to ornate Symbolist texts of earnest intensity. Certain chapters are unique in his writing: Raymond Queneau described The Old Man of the Mountain as Jarry's most perfect work, and ' the episode Fear Visits Love is among his most often reprinted works in France. Despite its curious origins, the novel is an essential part of Jarry's oeuvre.