THE FIRST COLLECTED EDITION: CENTENARY LIMITED EDITION OF CHURCHILL'S WORKS, 34 VOLUMES IN PUBLISHER’S FULL VELLUM GILT
CHURCHILL, Winston. The Collected Works of Sir Winston Churchill. Centenary Limited Edition. (London): Library of Imperial History, (1973-76). Thirty-four volumes. Large octavo, original full vellum, upper boards gilt-stamped with the Churchill arms, marbled endpapers, all edges gilt, original dark green slipcases, also gilt-stamped with the Churchill arms. $11,800.
Centenary limited edition of Churchill's Complete Works, one of only 3000 sets produced, copiously illustrated with numerous photographic plates, maps, and charts. Beautifully bound in publisher’s gilt-stamped vellum and printed on 500-year archival paper.
This monumental set, the first of only two collected editions ever produced, was issued in recognition of the centenary of Churchill's birth. Compiled and published with the approval and cooperation of the Churchill Centenary Committee and members of his family, this edition reproduces all of Churchill's 50 books in 34 volumes. "To achieve publication, 11 publishing houses in Great Britain, the United States, and Canada released their individual copyrights, in exchange for the promise that no other complete collection of Churchill's works would be published until the expiration of international copyright in 2019" (Langworth, 362). An extremely desirable set, "the Collected Works are so rare that few can access them" (Langworth, 364). With a preface by the Baroness Spencer-Churchill; edited by Churchill bibliographer Frederick Woods. A "Centenary First Edition" of Churchill's 25 "major works" was published by the Diner's Club in 1974, but "there is less demand for these than the Collected Works because they include fewer volumes of Churchill's books" (Langworth, 370). Without the scarce four-volume continuation, The Collected Essays of Sir Winston Churchill. Cohen AA1. Woods, 391.
Light toning to vellum of some volumes, as is usual with these sets; occasional light rubbing to slipcases. A fine, handsome set, increasingly scarce.