London: Thornton Butterworth Ltd., 1932. First edition, first printing. Hardcover. This is the first edition, first printing of Churchill's collection of 23 engaging essays on an incredibly wide variety of subjects. It has been called "The broadest range of Churchill's thought between two hard covers" and reflects the two qualities that so characterize Churchill's life - a remarkable breadth of both mind and life experience.
The khaki cloth unique to the first printing of this edition is notoriously prone to scuffing, wear, and soiling, and the contents proved highly susceptible to spotting. Absent the protection of the scarce and expensive original dust jacket, nearly every copy we encounter is both significantly scuffed and spine toned.
This copy is in good plus condition. The binding is inevitably scuffed, including a tiny closed tear at the spine head, but nonetheless remains square and tight with bright gilt and no appreciable color shift between the covers and spine. The contents are unusually clean. We find no internal spotting, which appears confined to just a few scattered spots on the page edges. The sole previous ownership mark dates from the Second World War and intrigues. "W. Churchill" and a date of "14/6/44" is inked on the front free endpaper recto. This, in our opinion, is definitively not the signature of the author. The page edges show moderate age-toning, the fore and bottom edges otherwise clean, the top edge a bit dust soiled, the fore edges with a few minor indentations.
An original blurb for Thoughts and Adventures encapsulates – as far as is possible – the wide range of the chapters within: “These true stories concern such things as the tides that make a politician change his mind; the domination of chance in human lives; the cartoonists who mocked Churchill; the chances and events that occurred while he was in the trenches; phases of the war seen from intimate participation with the high commands; flying experiences in 1912; the Irish; the future; and contemporary change." In a 31 May 1932 letter to his publisher about the book, Churchill characterized it thus: "...although there is no one single theme, it has some of the best things in it I have ever written."
Reference: Cohen A95.1.a, Woods/ICS A39(aa.1), Langworth p.156. Item #007735