KOESTLER, Arthur. Spanish Testament. With an Introduction by the Duchess of Atholl. London, Gollancz, 1937.
8vo. Original black cloth with dust-wrapper; pp. 384; wrapper with some marginal fraying and toning to spine; initially and at the end a little spotted; still a good copy of a rare edition; ownership inscription, dated 1938 to front fly-leaf.
First edition - and not the Left Book Club issue which appeared in orange wrappers - of the author's first books published in England, being his account of the Spanish Civil War. 'Koestler describes his experiences as the News Chronicle correspondent: & how he was present at the fall of Malaga: his arrest: weeks in prison under sentence of death' (text on wrappers).
'Koestler scraped a living in Paris writing journalism and guidebooks, and on 22 June 1935 he married Dorothea Ascher, a Communist Party worker. In the following year he was employed by the anti-Franco News Chronicle to go to Spain as a special correspondent. But in 1937 he was captured by Franco's troops and imprisoned in Malaga and Seville from February to June, under daily threat of execution. Dorothea's tireless efforts to save him finally persuaded the British government to intervene, but the experience marked him profoundly. Upon his release Koestler travelled to England, where Victor Gollancz commissioned him to write a book about his experiences. Spanish Testament was published to considerable acclaim in 1937' (DNB).