How rare is this Winston Churchill book? You have six days to find out...

 

We've dealt with all kinds of Sir Winston Churchill collectibles at Paul Fraser Collectibles, whether it's his spectacles, his cigars... or even his dentures.

Yet it's been a while since we last encountered the word "Churchilliana".

The term was originally used to apply to any item created in Churchill's lifetime, or associated directly with him, and later embraced by proud scholars of his collectibles and legacy.

Now the word has reappeared, as used by South African auctioneer Clarke's Africana & Rare Books to describe a section of its Auction #11 devoted to Churchill's authored books (written "By The Right Honourable Winston S. Churchill C.H. M.P").

Online bidding in the auction is currently open and closes in six days' time.


Didn't he prefer cigars to Marlborough...? A first edition of Sir Winston Churchill's comprehensive four-volume work


Highlighting the various books linked to Britain's wartime Prime Minister is Marlborough: His Life and Times, a four-volume study of the life of John, Duke of Marlborough, written and autographed by Churchill himself.

Published by George G. Harrap & Co. Ltd between 1933-1938, this Edition was originally limited to just 155 copies. Yet this copy could be even rarer...

In the first volume of his Bibliography of the Writings of Sir Winston Churchill, expert Ronald I Cohen mentions five unnumbered copies with the word 'Special' handwritten in the number space on the limitation page.

However, this copy doesn't have 'Special' written inside it, but rather 'Presentation' above Sir Winston's signature.

Cohen's comprehensive book doesn't record a copy with the word 'Presentation' - which raises some questions. Could this copy be so rare that Cohen missed it altogether?

A mysterious inscription within the book, 'To Steve from George / 1933', also adds to its mystery...


Churchill's signature, written beneath the scrawled word 'Presentation'


The four volumes carry a pre-sale estimate of $13,000-15,000 (with a $10,000 reserve), and interested collectors have just six days of bidding left to question the seller about its provenance.

Other features of the four volumes include the Marlborough coat of arms in gilt on the upper covers and marbled endpapers. Each volume is contained in a grey paper-covered slip case, with a paper title label on the back.

With the binding and overall condition billed as "very good", these volumes are certainly worth a closer look by collectors of Churchill's memorabilia.

Watch this space for more news on Sir Winston Churchill's collectibles.

 

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