The Unwritten Alliance
London: Cassell & Company Ltd., 1961. First edition, only printing. Hardcover. This is a jacketed copy of the fifth and final volume of Churchill's postwar speech volumes. There was no U.S. edition for this volume and the British first edition was limited to a single printing of 5,000 copies. Moreover, dust jackets for The Unwritten Alliance were notoriously poorly printed, and consequently are almost always rubbed or streaked, with orange showing through the black background.
This copy is good plus in a good plus dust jacket – sound, complete, and jacketed, despite suffering aesthetic deficiencies endemic to the edition. The orange-red cloth binding is square and tight, with mild overall soiling, very slight color shift to the spine, a strip of mild toning at the upper edge of the rear cover, tiny bumps to the lower corners, and wrinkling at the spine ends. The contents are clean, age-toned but with no previous ownership marks and no spotting. The dust jacket is unclipped, retaining the original front flap price, and with only one reportable loss – a small chip confined to the oak leaf border at the upper left front face. Apart from modest overall soiling, the chief defect of this dust jacket is a significant case of the abrasion endemic to this edition’s dust jacket, resulting in considerable orange showing through the black on both the spine and front face. The dust jacket is protected beneath a removable, clear, archival cover.
The Unwritten Alliance includes 70 speeches delivered by Churchill between 30 January 1953 and 31 October 1959. These speeches span the end of Churchill's second and final term as Prime Minister (1951-1955) and the twilight of his long life and public career. The period coincides with Churchill’s 1953 receipt of the Nobel Prize in Literature, in part “…for brilliant oratory in defending exalted human values.” The bulk of the speeches in The Unwritten Alliance - 43 of 70 and 250 of 332 pages - take place during Churchill's premiership. In this final volume of his speeches published during his lifetime, Churchill passes "into a living national memorial" of the time he has lived and the Nation, Empire, and free world he has served.
The Unwritten Alliance takes its name specifically from Churchill's 8 June 1954 speech and more generally from the "special relationship" between Britain and the United States, which had endured postwar disagreements. The editor, Winston’s son Randolph, wrote in his introduction to the volume that the title was "justified by the number of speeches which dwell on the paramount necessity of Anglo-American friendship."
Reference: Cohen A273, Woods/ICS A142, Langworth p.338. Item #007461