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Lot #353
Winston Churchill

Rare hand-corrected proof page from Churchill's biography of Marlborough

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Estimate: $5000+
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Rare hand-corrected proof page from Churchill's biography of Marlborough

Three items related to Churchill's publication of the biography Marlborough: His Life and Times, including: a TLS signed "Yours sincerely, Winston S. Churchill," one page, Chartwell letterhead, January 9, 1935, to C. C. Wood, chief copy editor at George G. Harrap & Co., in full: "I am not expecting to publish Volume III of Marlborough till the spring of 1936, as there is so much political distraction at the present time"; a proof sheet from the book, marked "Marlborough—II, Slip 241D," with two corrections in Churchill's hand, "in this history of the Fall of the House of Stuart has bequeathed us a monumental work," and, "Imperial commander Prince Louis of Baden." Also includes a TLS to Wood by one of Churchill's assistants, two pages, Chartwell letterhead, August 18, 1934, in part: "I now send you pages 241 to 336 for proofs when the few outstanding points have been settled." In overall very good to fine condition, with creasing and a repaired edge tear to the proof.

Churchill was commissioned to write a biography of his ancestor, John Churchill, 1st Duke of Marlborough, in 1929. He began writing it in earnest in 1932, and ultimately published four volumes between 1933 and 1938. He began the work in an effort to refute earlier criticisms of Marlborough by the historian Thomas Babington Macaulay. As a writer, Churchill was meticulous and paid close attention to detail, which would ultimately lead to his receipt of the 1953 Nobel Prize in Literature for ‘his mastery of historical and biographical description as well as for brilliant oratory in defending exalted human values.’

Auction Info

  • Auction Title: Fine Autographs and Artifacts
  • Dates: #531 - Ended July 11, 2018

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