The Royal Naval Division. Douglas Jerrold, the Right Hon. Winston S. Churchill.
The Royal Naval Division
The Royal Naval Division
The Royal Naval Division

The Royal Naval Division

London: Hutchinson, 1923. First edition. Hardcover. This is the first edition, first printing of The Royal Naval Division by Douglas Jerrold with a substantial, nine-page Introduction by Winston S. Churchill. Condition approaches very good. The appropriately hued navy blue cloth binding remains square, sound, and unfaded, with bright spine gilt and moderate wear to extremities. The contents remain respectably bright with a crisp feel. Spotting is primarily confined to the page edges with a few intrusions into blank inner margins. This first edition was published with a profusion of illustrations and maps, all of which remain intact. Previous ownership marks include a name in pencil on the upper half-title page, the illustrated bookplate of “John Philip Jones” affixed to the front pastedown, and “John and Wendy Jones 22 January 1962” inked on the front free endpaper recto opposite the bookplate. This book presents the history of the Royal Naval Division, formed under Winston Churchill’s leadership during his tenure as First Lord of the Admiralty (1911-1915). The Royal Naval Division fought at Antwerp in 1914 and Gallipoli in 1915 before transfer to the British Army as the 63rd (Royal Naval) Division. From the first pages of the book, the author seeks to dispel “Legend” that the division was “hurriedly formed… and thrown into Antwerp without any realization of its inadequacy” and “faultily trained… to take a premature share in the Gallipoli campaign” (p.1). The same year that The Royal Naval Division was published, Churchill published the first volume of his own WWI history – The World Crisis – in part to dispel misconceptions about his role in the Gallipoli disaster as First Lord of the Admiralty, for which he was scapegoated and forced to resign. The Royal Naval Division concludes with a harbinger of the Second World War to come: “…the Naval Division will live as a memory, only to be rekindled when, in another great crisis, old traditions are awakened and the familiar battle-grounds of the British people echo again to the noise and rumour of war.” (p.329) Much the same could be said of Churchill, fated to return to the Admiralty and to war in September, 1939. Bibliographic reference: Cohen B30, Woods B10. Item #005738

Price: $100.00