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Marlborough: - CHURCHILL, Winston S - 1933. [1278735]
London: George G. Harrap & Co. Ltd.,, 1933?8. His Life and Times. 4 volumes, large octavo. Original dark redddish orange full niger morocco by Leighton-Straker for the publishers, gilt lettered spines with single gilt rule at head and tail, narrow raised bands bracketed by rules in blind, Churchill arms gilt to front covers, top edges gilt, untrimmed, marbled endpapers. Illustrated throughout with numerous plates, plans and maps. Spines lightly sunned, very slight bump to a couple of corners, scattered light foxing. A very good set. First edition, limited issue, number 25 of 155 copies signed by Churchill on the limitation statement (verso of the half-title in volume I). Peter Clarke has recently described Marlborough as "a monument to its author's historical commitment, insight - and fortitude" (Mr. Churchill's Profession, p. 174); T. E. Lawrence thought it "history, solemn and decorative"; while Stanley Baldwin exclaimed that it "would mean years of work even for a man whose sole occupation was writing history. Well, there is the miracle and let it remain. But I don't understand it" (both quoted in Cohen). It is probably Fred Woods's summary which best gathers these threads, and captures the spirit of the work: "Marlborough is huge ? heavily documented, comprehensive. No future historian can hope to avoid indebtedness, and no unprofessional reader can fail to be moved by the grandeur of the vision, the language and the myth. Sonority piles on sonority, vista succeeds vista, magnificence follows magnificence" (Artillery of Words, pp. 120-21). Provenance: with the attractive bookplates of John Clive Gascoigne MC (1907-1957). Gascoigne was a major in 4 Tank Battallion Grenadier Guards during the Second World War. His unit was part of 6 Guards Tank Brigade, VIII Corps, Second Army, 21 Army Group, and saw action in North-West Europe in 1944-45. The award of his MC - announced in the London Gazette on 21 December 1944 - presumably followed action in Holland that winter. 6 Guards Tank Brigade was equipped with Churchill tanks - as illustrated on Gascoigne's bookplate Churchill refers to 6 Guards Tank Brigade in The Second World War (Appendix C, 4 April '44) in a memo to Sir James Grigg and Alan Brooke, opposing the break up of the unit: "There is the 6th Guards Army Tank Brigade, equipped with the latest Churchills [the mark VII]. For over two years these men have been trained together with one object and purpose, It seems to me a disastrous procedure to disband them now and fling the men into the general pool... No action should be taken on this point until it has been thoroughly discussed between us". Churchill had himself served initially in the Grenadier Guards during the Great War and Marlborough is dedicated to that distinguished regiment.
      [Bookseller: Peter Harrington]
Last Found On: 2016-12-01           Check availability:      Biblio    

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