FICTION & NON FICTION

The Complete Works of George Orwell (CWGO)

Peter Davison edited The Complete Works of George Orwell, a twenty-volume collection that includes Orwell’s standard published library and eleven chronological volumes of non fiction* with a further supplementary book of ‘lost works’ published a decade later. I had managed to collect all but four of these volumes – Keep the Aspidistra Flying Vol. 4; Homage to Catalonia Vol. 6; Animal Farm Vol. 8; and, Nineteen Eighty-Four Vol.9 – which proved impossible to buy at any price so I ended-up buying another complete set in fine condition (the first I have seen on the market for many years).

The late Professor Davison, even when very elderly, generously answered my emails and offered advice (I particularly valued his personal reminisces about Sydney University in the 1960s which he shared with me prior to publication). These twenty volumes he edited (assisted by his late wife, Sheila, and Angus Young) total approximately 8,500 pages, with 33 plates, text illustrations, notes, references, chronologies, appendices, indices and are beautifully bound in blue cloth with their spines lettered in silver. I love the ribbon markers and feel Orwell would have approved of the dust wrappers.

On one level, The Complete Works really does make the other collections I own superfluous but then again, it is useful to have different arrangements, especially of Orwell’s essays and journalism.  I have the eleven non fiction volumes in paperback too.

Down and Out in Paris and London, The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 1, Secker & Warburg, 1997

Burmese Days, The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 2, Secker & Warburg, 1997

A Clergyman’s Daughter, The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 3, Secker & Warburg, 1997

Keep the Aspidistra Flying, The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 4, Secker & Warburg, 1997 

The Road to Wigan Pier, The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 5, Secker & Warburg, 1997

Homage to Catalonia The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 6, Secker & Warburg, 1997 

Coming Up for Air, The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 7, Secker & Warburg, 1997

Animal Farm, The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 8, Secker & Warburg, 1997 

Nineteen Eighty-Four, The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 9, Secker & Warburg, 1997 

A Kind of Compulsion: 1903–1936, The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 10, Secker & Warburg, 1998

A Kind of Compulsion: 1903–1936, The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 10, Secker & Warburg, 2000

Facing Unpleasant Facts: 1937–1939, The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 11, Secker & Warburg, 1998

Facing Unpleasant Facts: 1937–1939, The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 11, Secker & Warburg, 2000

A Patriot After All: 1940–1941, The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 12, Secker & Warburg, 1998

A Patriot After All: 1940–1941, The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 12, Secker & Warburg, 2000

All Propaganda Is Lies: 1941–1942, The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 13, Secker & Warburg, 1998

All Propaganda Is Lies: 1941–1942, The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 13, Secker & Warburg, 2001

Keeping Our Little Corner Clean: 1942–1943, The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 14, Secker & Warburg, 1998

Keeping Our Little Corner Clean: 1942–1943, The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 14, Secker & Warburg, 2001

Two Wasted Years: 1943, The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 15, Secker & Warburg, 1998

Two Wasted Years: 1943, The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 15, Secker & Warburg, 2001

I Have Tried to Tell the Truth: 1943–1944, The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 16, Secker & Warburg, 1998

I Have Tried to Tell the Truth: 1943–1944, The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 16, Secker & Warburg, 2001

I Belong to the Left: 1945, The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 17, Secker & Warburg, 1998

I Belong to the Left: 1945, The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 17, Secker & Warburg, 2001

Smothered Under Journalism: 1946, The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 18, Secker & Warburg, 1998

Smothered Under Journalism: 1946, The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 18, Secker & Warburg, 2001

It Is What I Think: 1947–1948, The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 19, Secker & Warburg, 1998

It Is What I Think: 1947–1948, The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 19, Secker & Warburg, 2002

Our Job Is to Make Life Worth Living: 1949–1950, The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 20, Secker & Warburg, 1998

Our Job Is to Make Life Worth Living: 1949–1950, The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 20, Secker & Warburg, 2002

The Lost Orwell: Being a Supplement to the Complete Works of George Orwell, Timewell Press, 2006 (signed and inscribed by Peter Davison)

*There is a Kindle version at a bargain price, The Collected Non Fiction.

NB In 1986, the first nine volumes of Orwell’s standard works, edited by Davison were published. I have four of them.

Down and Out in Paris and London, The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 1, Secker & Warburg, 1986. 230pp.

Burmese Days, The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 2, Secker & Warburg, 1986. 322pp.

Homage to Catalonia, The Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 6, Secker & Warburg, 1986. 261pp.

Coming Up for AirThe Complete Works of George Orwell – Volume 7, Secker & Warburg, 1986. 254pp.

Uniform Series (Secker & Warburg)

Orwell fantasised – when he was a teenager and dreaming of being a FAMOUS AUTHOR – about having ‘uniform editions’ of his books in dark blue jackets, He never managed to get that desired colour but was, in the last years of his life, focused on having the works he wished to remain in print standardised. Burmese Days and Coming Up For Air (1948) were published in this uniform edition while he lived but it took until 1959 for The Road to Wigan Pier to appear. There is nothing particularly uniform about the appearance of the books and a number of challenges often prevented the text being reprinted as Orwell wished.

Burmese Days, Secker & Warburg, 1948 (First edition 3000 printed)

Coming Up for Air, Secker & Warburg, 1948 (First edition 5000 printed)

Down and Out in London and Paris, Secker & Warburg, 1949 (First edition 3000 printed)

England Your England and other essays, Secker and Warburg, 12 November 1953

Keep the Aspidistra Flying, Secker & Warburg, 1954 (First edition)

Homage to Catalonia, Secker & Warburg, 1954 (Reprint)

Nineteen Eighty-Four, Secker & Warburg, 1955 (Reprint)

The Road to Wigan Pier, Secker & Warburg, 1959 (First edition)

Miscellaneous Editions 

A Clergyman’s Daughter, Penguin, 1964 (First Penguin edition)

A Clergyman’s Daughter, Penguin, New York: Signet Classics, 1965

All Art Is Propaganda: Critical Essays, Mariner Books, 2009. 416pp.

Animal Farm, Penguin, 1951. (First Penguin edition)

Animal Farm: A Fairy Story, Bridge series, London: Longmans, Green & Co, 1954.

Animal Farm, Signet Classic #CP12, 1963

Animal Farm, Secker and Warburg, 1971

Animal Farm, Penguin, 1983

Animal Farm: A Fairy Story, The Folio Society, 1984. 104pp. (First edition, illustrated by Quentin Blake)

Animal Farm: A Fairy Story, Harcourt Brace, 1995. 192pp. (Fiftieth Anniversary edition illustrated by Ralph Steadman)

Animal Farm (Orwell: The New Editions), London: Constable, 2021. 144pp. (Introduction and annotations by D.J. Taylor)

Bookshop Memories, Arethusa Pers Herber Blockland, 1987. 16pp. (#144 of 150 numbered copies with a foreword by W.E. Butler and a wood-engraving by Hilary Paynter)

Burmese Days, London: Penguin, 1944. 240pp. (First Penguin edition)

Burmese Days, NYC: Popular Library, 1952. 255pp

Burmese Days, Time Reading Program Special Edition with introduction by Malcolm Muggeridge, New York: Time Inc., 1962

Burmese Days, Penguin, NYC: Signet, 1963. 256pp. (with an afterword by Richard Rees)

Burmese Days, Penguin, 1967. 262pp.

Burmese Days, Penguin Modern Edition, 2009. Introduction by Emma Larkin

Burmese Days, Collins Classics, 2021. 352pp.

Coming Up For Air, Avon Books, 1956 (No.T-144, first paperback edition with cover art by Lou Marchetti)

Coming Up For Air, Harbrace Papermount Library (HPL 44). ND

Coming Up For Air, Penguin, 1974

Decline of the English Murder and Other Essays, Penguin, 1965. 192pp. (First Penguin edition)

Decline of the English Murder and Other Essays, Penguin, 1975. 192pp.

Down and Out in Paris and London, Penguin, 1940. (First paperback edition 55 000 copies printed; Penguin No. 297)

Down and Out in Paris and London, Permabooks, 1954 (“First Printing”)

Down and Out in Paris and London, Penguin, 1974

Essays (Everyman’s Library Contemporary Classics Series), 2002. 1400pp.

Facing Unpleasant Facts: Narrative Essays, Mariner Books, 2009. 336pp.

Fascism and Democracy, Penguin, 2020. 48pp.

Fighting in Spain, Penguin, 2007

George Orwell: Diaries, New York: Liveright, 2012. 624pp.

George Orwell: A Life in Letters, New York: Liveright, 2013. 560pp.

George Orwell: A Life in Letters and Diaries, London: Folio Society, 2017. 506pp.

George Orwell in Kent: Hop-Picking, Bridge Books: Kent Edition, 1970. 45pp. #88 of #300. (Reprinting of “Hop-Picking” published in The New Statesman and Nation, 17th of October 1931)

George Orwell: The Complete Poetry, Finlay, 2015, 63pp. (one of 500 copies of the first printing of the first edition)

George Orwell: The Complete Poetry, Finlay, 2015, 82pp.

George Orwell Visions of Dystopia, London: Flame Tree, 2021. 432pp. (foreword by D.J. Taylor and introduction by Richard Bradford)

George Orwell Reportage, London: Folio Society, No. 947, 1998. (five volume set)

George Orwell: Selected Writings, London: Heinemann Educational Books-Secondary Division, 1958. (edited with an introduction by George Bott).

George Orwell: Animal Farm Letters, Bloomington: Private Press of Fredric Brewer, 1984. 45pp. (#167/200 copies)

Homage to Catalonia, Penguin, 1979

Homage to Catalonia, Penguin, 1989

In Defence of English Cooking, Pocket Penguin No. 23, 2005

Inside the Whale Other and Other Essays, Penguin, 1966

Inside the Whale Other and Other Essays, Penguin, 1972

Keep the Aspidistra Flying, Popular Library Edition, June, 1957 (cover art by Mitchell Hooks)

Keep the Aspidistra Flying, Penguin, 1962. (First Penguin edition)

Keep the Aspidistra Flying, Penguin, 1971

Nineteen Eighty-Four, London: Penguin, 1954 (first UK paperback edition)

Nineteen Eighty-Four, London: Heron Books, 1970. 346pp. (introduction by Julian Symons)

1984 – Commemorative Edition, New York: Plume, April 1983. 267pp. (with a preface by Walter Cronkite)

Nineteen Eighty-Four, Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1984. 460pp. (with annotations and an introduction by Bernard Crick)

Nineteen Eighty-Four: The Facsimile of the Extant Manuscript, Secker & Warburg, 1984. 381pp. (edited by Peter Davison)

Nineteen Eighty-Four: The Facsimile of the Extant Manuscript, Secker & Warburg, 1984. 381pp. (edited by Peter Davison)

1984, New York: Signet Classics, 1985 (film tie-in with 8-pages of photographs in new/mint condition)

Nineteen Eighty-Four – ELT, Penguin, 1986. 247pp. (unusual copyright page “Band 27” looks like English text for students as synopsis on the back cover is in German)

Nineteen Eighty-Four – The Annotated Edition, Penguin Classics, 2013. 416pp. (edited by DJ Taylor with ‘note on the text’ by Peter Davison)

Nineteen Eighty-FourBlack Inc, 2017, 322pp

Nineteen Eighty-Four, Secker & Warburg, 1999 (50th Anniversary edition illustrated by Alex Williamson)

Nineteen Eighty-Four (Orwell: The New Editions), London: Constable, 2021. 352pp. (Introduction and annotations by D.J. Taylor)

Notes on Nationalism, Penguin Classics, 2018. 64pp.

Orwell: Diaries, London: Harvill Secker, 2009. 528pp.

Orwell: A Life in Letters, London: Harvill Secker, 2010. 560pp.

Orwell and PoliticsPenguin, 2001, 560pp.

Orwell and the Dispossessed, Penguin, 2001, 448pp.

Orwell in Spain, Penguin, 2001, 416pp.

Orwell’s England, Penguin, 2001, 432pp.

Orwell: The Observer YearsAtlantic, 2005, 256pp.

Orwell in Tribune: “As I Please” and other writingsMethuen Publishing, 2007, 240pp.

Orwell: On Freedom, Harvill Secker, 2018. 224pp.

Orwell on Truth, Harvill Secker, 2017. 224pp.

Orwell: The War Broadcasts, Duckworth & Co/BBC Books, 1985

Orwell: The War Commentaries, Duckworth & Co/BBC Books, 1985

Orwell: The War Broadcasts, Penguin, 1995, 336pp.

Orwell: The War Commentaries, Penguin, 1995, 272pp.

Pages from a Scullion’s Diary, Penguin, 1995, 53pp (first edition)

Ruins: Orwell’s Reports as War Correspondent in France, Germany and Austria from February until June 1945, Comino-Verlag, 2021. 120pp

The Road to Wigan Pier, New York: Signet Classics, 1958

The Road to Wigan Pier, Penguin, 1962 (First Penguin edition)

The Road to Wigan Pier, Penguin, 1969

Seeing Things as They Are: Selected Journalism and Other WritingsHarvill Secker, 2014, 496pp.

Selected Essays, Penguin, 1957 (First Penguin edition)

Selected Writings, edited by George Bott, Heinemann Educational, 1969

The Art of Donald McGill: An Essay by George Orwell, Ryde: Greaves & Thomas, N.D. 16pp.

Unwelcome Guerrilla: George Orwell and the New Statesman – An Anthology, Manchester Free Press, 1985, 95pp.

The Collected Essays, Journalism and Letters of George Orwell (CEJL)

Sonia Orwell and Ian Angus edited a four-volume collection of Orwell’s writings, The Collected Essays, Journalism and Letters of George Orwell. I have many versions, including the UK first editions in fine condition.

  • An Age Like This – Volume 1 1920–1940, London, Secker & Warburg, 1968
  • My Country Right or Left – Volume 2 1940-1943, London, Secker & Warburg, 1968
  • As I Please – Volume 3 1943-1945, London, Secker & Warburg, 1968
  • In Front of Your Nose – Volume 4 1945–1950, London, Secker & Warburg, 1968

  • An Age Like This – Volume 1 1920–1940, New York: Harcourt, Brace & World Inc., 1968
  • My Country Right or Left – Volume 2 1940-1943, New York: Harcourt, Brace & World Inc., 1968
  • As I Please – Volume 3 1943-1945, New York: Harcourt, Brace & World Inc., 1968
  • In Front of Your Nose – Volume 4 1945–1950, New York: Harcourt, Brace & World Inc., 1968

  • An Age Like This – Volume 1 1920–1940, Nonpareil Books, 2000, 574pp
  • My Country Right or Left – Volume 2 1940-1943, Nonpareil Books, 2007, 477pp
  • As I Please – Volume 3 1943-1945, Nonpareil Books, 2000, 435pp
  • In Front of Your Nose – Volume 4 1945–1950, Nonpareil Books, 2000, pp
  • An Age Like This – Volume 1 1920–1940, Penguin, 1970. 624pp
  • My Country Right or Left – Volume 2 1940-1943, Penguin, 1970. 470pp.
  • As I Please – Volume 3 1943-1945, Penguin, 1970. 574pp.
  • In Front of Your Nose – Volume 4 1945–1950, Penguin, 1970. 624pp

  • In Front of Your Nose – Volume 4 1945–1950, London, Secker & Warburg, 1968 (uncorrected advance proof)
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