The Collected Works of Sir Winston S. Churchill, complete in 38 volumes, including The Collected Essays. Winston S. Churchill.
The Collected Works of Sir Winston S. Churchill, complete in 38 volumes, including The Collected Essays
The Collected Works of Sir Winston S. Churchill, complete in 38 volumes, including The Collected Essays
The Collected Works of Sir Winston S. Churchill, complete in 38 volumes, including The Collected Essays
The Collected Works of Sir Winston S. Churchill, complete in 38 volumes, including The Collected Essays
The Collected Works of Sir Winston S. Churchill, complete in 38 volumes, including The Collected Essays

The Collected Works of Sir Winston S. Churchill, complete in 38 volumes, including The Collected Essays

London: Library of Imperial History, 1974. First edition, only printing. Hardcover. This is a magnificent, unread, virtually pristine 38-volume set of The Collected Works of Sir Winston Churchill, including the four-volume Collected Essays. The Collected Works was a lavish, 34-volume production timed to commemorate the centenary of Churchill's birth. Most sets were bound in natural calfskin vellum with 22 ct. gold titling, the Churchill Arms in gilt on the front cover, gilt page edges, green marbled endpapers, green and gold head and foot bands, and satin ribbon markers. The contents were printed on special 500-year archival paper. The volumes were housed in green leather slipcases, also featuring the gilt Churchill Arms. Some understandably quibble about the editions used and revisions included in the Collected Works. Few contest that the set testifies with beautiful authority to the life’s literary labors of the man who “already in 1900” had “written as many books as Moses” and did not stop writing them for the next half century “except when momentarily interrupted by war”. (WSC, remarks of 4 July 1950) Three years after his gently irreverent comparison of his authorship to that of Moses, Churchill was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature. The 34 volumes of the Collected Works are virtually a library unto themselves. The set consumes nearly five feet of shelf space and weighs almost 100 pounds, comprising five million words printed on 19,000 pages. The publisher intended to produce 3000 sets. However, the print run never exceeded 2000 copies, and since the books were bound only as orders were taken, it appears that no more than 1750 sets were ever bound and sold by the publisher. In 1976, the Library of Imperial History made a welcome addition and follow-up to The Collected Works. The four-volume Collected Essays of Sir Winston Churchill compile most of Churchill's major forewords and periodical contributions, some of which can be otherwise found only in the original periodical publications. The essays are sorted by subject and each of the volumes has a theme - Churchill and War, Churchill and Politics, Churchill and People, and Churchill at Large. The four-volume sets are highly sought on their own merits and there were two publisher binding options. The lesser of the two was bound in quarter blue morocco and is lovely, but does not match the other 34 volumes of The Collected Works. The more elaborate binding option was full natural calfskin vellum with individual green leather slipcases, exactly matching the 34 volumes of The Collected Works. This is the best 38-volume set in the original vellum that we have offered, unread and approaching as-new condition, increasingly scarce thus. The calfskin vellum was meant to tone and mellow with age. Unfortunately, the vellum typically has yellowed and browned considerably, often separating from the underlying binding material in the process. Moreover, the green leather slipcases often adhere to one another in the wrong climate conditions, creating significant superficial scarring, and also scuff and blemish easily. This set is a superlative exception to the customary deficiencies. The set is clearly unread, the original satin ribbon markers still apparently in the original positions as shipped from the publisher in all but the first volume, the bindings pleasingly stiff and unopened, the contents immaculately crisp and untouched. There are no previous ownership marks of any kind. The vellum bindings are likewise uncompromisingly immaculate, with no signs of wear or handling. Toning is minimal and aesthetically pleasing. Even the slipcases are improbably clean and bright, with no defects noted other than some incidental shelf scuffing to the bottom edges. Please be advised that this large, heavy set will be packed with care and shipped at cost, depending on the buyer's destination and shipping preference. Bibliographic reference: Cohen AA1, Woods/ICS AA1, Langworth pages 362-369. Item #005729

Price: $8,000.00

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