"THE MOST READABLE OF OFFICIAL HISTORIES": RALEIGH AND JONES' COMPLETE THE WAR IN THE AIR, 1922-37 FIRST EDITIONS IN SCARCE ORIGINAL DUST JACKETS, WITH ALL MAPS IN THE ORIGINAL MAP CASES
(WORLD WAR I) RALEIGH, Walter, and JONES, Henry Arthur. The War in the Air. Being the Story of the Part Played in the Great War by the Royal Air Force. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1922-37. Seven volumes plus two map cases, for a total of nine volumes. Octavo, original black cloth, original dust jackets (two octavo-sized map cases in original cloth). $6500.
First edition of Raleigh’s analytical history of the Royal Air Force’s contribution during the First World War, continued by Jones after Raleigh’s untimely death, with dozens of folding maps printed in color in the seven text volumes, in scarce original dust jackets, complete with 70 additional folding maps housed in two map cases.
"Raleigh was able to complete only the first volume of The War in the Air, but it remains his longest work. It was his first experience of writing history on a large scale. The assistance of a skilled staff in sifting details and explaining technicalities enabled him to work with sustained zest. 'The writer of this history,' he said in his preface, 'has endeavored to make his narrative intelligible to those who, like himself, are outsiders.' It is the most readable of official histories, and it contains some of his best writing. His style is here at its simplest, but the fervor of his admiration for the heroism of the air is everywhere apparent, and finds memorable expression in the introduction. The volume was published a few weeks after his death" (DNB). Jones eventually completed the work, which reached seven volumes, along with two volumes of maps, all included here. Owner ink signature and gift inscription in Volume I.
Near-fine in the scarce original dust jackets. A very desirable set.