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ATLAS TO THE MEMOIRS OF JOHN DUKE OF MARLBOROUGH
-First Edition, with a Bookplate of Winston Churchill Laid-In-
Longmans, Green, & Co. Ltd. [London]
4to (22 plates, including armorial bearings, maps, and military plans.)
Hardcover [Ornately gilt-tooled leather]
Item Number: 8493
This is the final seventh volume of The Memoirs of John Duke of Marlborough published in 1820. It is the true first edition of this rarity, the supplemental Atlas volume, with all plates and fold-out maps present. The spine has been repaired withe some loss to the lower title label. The ornately gilt-tooled full-calf leather covers are a bit scuffed with age, the ornamental gilt has faded in places, the marble endpapers and fore-edges are slightly faded. Laid-into this book is a leather-backed bookplate imprinted: “Ex Libris: Winston Churchill” over a line-drawing of St. George slaying the dragon. St. George was the patron saint of Great Britain. John Churchill, as the first Duke of Marlborough, was awarded in 1661 an augmentation of honour to his family arms in the form of a canton of St. John, in recognition of his services to King Charles I as Captain of the Horse and his loyalty to King Charles II as a Member of Parliament. Churchill’s own attachment to St. George was manifested throughout his life and career; during World War II he often invoked the emblematic image of St. George slaying the dragon. According to his biographer, Sir Martin Gilbert, Winston Churchill did not utilize his own bookplate — so far as we know. Did this early bookplate belong to the young Winston? Impossible to say.