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T. E. Lawrence's Correspondence with the Political Elite 1922-1935, copy #376, an out-of-series issue of the publisher's finely bound full goatskin limited edition
Salisbury: Castle Hill Press, 2015. First and limited edition. Leather bound. This is an out-of-series copy of the publisher?s full goatskin limited edition of T. E. Lawrence's Correspondence with the Political Elite, spanning 1922-1935. This volume is a vital installment in the T.E. Lawrence Letters series published by Castle Hill Press, the premier editors and fine press publishers of material by and about T.E. Lawrence. The edition was limited to 427 copies, of which the first 50 were bound thus for subscribers, in full gray goatskin with gilt spine print, blind front cover rules, all edges gilt, head and tail bands, illustrated endpapers, and gilt ruled turn-ins, featuring a frontispiece illustration of Lionel Curtis by Augustus John and an index, and housed in a stout gray cloth slipcase, lined with red felt. Subscriber?s full goatskin copies were also unique in content, these alone featuring a 16-page Supplement following the Index. Owing to a salutary mistake by the binder, a few sets of sheets destined for cloth bindings were instead bound in full goatskin. Hence this copy, hand-numbered ?376?. Apart from the absence of the Supplement and higher limitation number, this copy is identical to the subscriber?s full goatskin bindings, which quickly sold out. We offer this out of series full goatskin bindings at 60% of the price for which we have sold full goatskin subscriber?s copies. From the publisher: "Many of T.E. Lawrence's contemporaries found it incomprehensible that, while serving in the ranks as Aircraftman T.E. Shaw, he should remain on friendly terms with members of the political elite, some of whom he had known while advising Winston Churchill in the Colonial Office. There was surely a contradiction between these continuing relationships and his rejection of social status." Among the letters published in this volume are 10 letters from Lawrence to his friend and admirer Winston Churchill, spanning 1922-1935, as well as Lawrence's inscription in Churchill's copy of Seven Pillars of Wisdom, a 1927 letter from Churchill to Lawrence, and significant correspondence with Eddie Marsh, Churchill's longtime private secretary. Churchill said of his friend: ?Lawrence had a full measure of the versatility of genius?  He was a savant as well as a soldier.  He was an archaeologist as well as a man of action.  He was an accomplished scholar as well as an Arab partisan.  He was a mechanic as well as a philosopher.  His background of somber experience and reflection only seemed to set forth more brightly the charm and gaiety of his companionship, and the generous majesty of his nature.?  (Great Contemporaries, p. 166) Much of Lawrence?s polymath genius scintillates in this correspondence volume. ?The correspondents (in alphabetical order) are Nancy Astor, Tory MP for Plymouth Sutton; John Buchan, writer and Unionist MP for the Combined Scottish Universities; Winston Churchill and his Private Secretary Edward Marsh; Lionel Curtis, Fellow of All Souls, editor of the Round Table, and one of the founding organisers of the Royal Institute of International Affairs; Geoffrey Dawson, Fellow of All Souls and Editor of The Times; Lord Lothian, Cabinet Minister, and Ernest Thurtle, the Labour MP for Shoreditch who was responsible, with Lawrence's help, for the abolition of the death penalty for cowardice in the British Army. There are strong contrasts here - for example between the light-hearted letters to Nancy Astor (reminiscent in tone to those he had written to E.T. Leeds before the war), and the deeply introspective letters to Lionel Curtis... Here are his letters to Winston Churchill, his former chief at the Colonial Office, together with less formal letters to Eddie Marsh. The letters to Ernest Thurtle hint at his experience manipulating the political machine. Given the circumstances and the personalities involved, the collection is extraordinary - as are the public tributes paid to Lawrence after his death.? This pristine, as-new copy was acquired by us from the publisher.
      [Bookseller: Churchill Book Collector]
Last Found On: 2016-10-15           Check availability:      Biblio    


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