First English Edition Set

By: Winston S. Churchill

Thornton Butterworth Ltd. [London]

Biblio: (Cohen A69.2[I.b, II-IV.a, V.b,VI.a]) (Woods A31ab)

8vo (5 volumes in 6 books. 2500+ pages, illustrated with folding maps and plans.)

Hardcover (with Dust Jackets) [Dark blue cloth]

Item Number: 206549

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Collector's Guide

The World Crisis is Churchill’s highly subjective history of the First World War. Comprising five volumes (in six books) written over eight years, the initial titles were first published in the U.S. (by a matter of days), making the American edition the true first edition. Volume I (1911-1914) and Volume II (1915) were published in 1923. Volume III (1916-1918 ) was published in two parts in 1927 (hence the five/in six volumes ultimate format). Volume IV (The Aftermath 1918-1928) was published in 1929; and Volume V (The Unknown War/The Eastern Front) in 1931. A one-volume abridgment by the author was soon issued. Most subsequent re-issues have been incomplete, abridged, or otherwise condensed versions of the original text.


This is a very good First English edition set of First Printings, in the very rare original dust jackets, which are somewhat worn but all correct.

VOLUME I (Book 1) dust jacket has darkened considerably, with edge-chipping, particularly at the spine head, fractional corner losses, and some streaking across the spine. The book is the Second State binding, per Cohen, with the Errata slip tipped-in opposite Page 1. The cloth and binding are bright and crisp. There is a former owner name dated in ink, “October 1922” on the front endpaper. The contents are fine, with light scattered foxing to the prelims and fore-edges and tanning to the front and rear endpapers, as well as a tiny London “Times Book Club” sticker on the rear pastedown.

VOLUME II (Book 2) dust jacket has darkened along the spine, with fractional losses at the spine head and tail, as well as streaking across the spine, but is otherwise quite nice. The book is in fine condition inside and out. (Cohen notes having examined one variant copy of this dust jacket that had the price printed with “a rather large square point following 30/. The dust jacket here is one such variant.)

VOLUME III/PARTS 1 & II (Books 3 & 4) dust jackets are fresh and bright on the front and rear faces, but Part I is considerably fragmented along the spine and Part II has losses at the head and tail. Both are preserved and filled out with archival tape. Both books are toned on the endpapers but are otherwise unfoxed and quite fine in every respect.

VOLUME IV: THE AFTERMATH (Book 5) jacket has age-darkened considerably, particularly along the spine but is otherwise beautifully intact. The book is the Second State, per Cohen, with the Errata slip tipped-in opposite Page 9. It is immaculate, inside and out.

VOLUME V: THE EASTERN FRONT (Book 6) dust jacket has fragmented along the edges, front and rear and is expertly preserved with its elements set out on an archival green paper backdrop. The spine has faded to a cream color but the spine type remains bright. The cloth is a trifle shelfworn at the corners. The cloth is otherwise bright and the binding crisp. The contents are fine.

A very nice example of a rare, correct, jacketed set.