Whisky - Signed - Aeneas MacDonald (pseud. George Malcolm Thomson) 1930 - Henry &, Garden City - First American Edition. Copy number 66 from a limitation of 307, 7 of which are issued &lsquo Signed by Christopher Morley (literary adviser) and the publishers Frank Henry and Dan Longwell. The Aeneas MacDonald signature is unlikely to be that of George Malcolm ‘Aeneas MacDonald’ Thomson, which was kindly pointed out to us by Ian Buxton (101 Legendary Whiskies, etc.), Thomson was not in the states at the time and it is signed ‘McDonald’ instead of ‘MacDonald’, hardly a schoolboy error for a Scotsman, even if it was his pseudonym...

This beautiful limited and privately printed ‘
Briefcase Breviary’ was published before the full book in the United States and the same year as the Edinburgh edition, as a sort of ‘advance review’. In it is Aeneas MacDonald’s stand alone piece - ‘The Nature of Whisky’ which was incorporated into the later book as the first chapter.

Per the colophon, ‘
This is an advance publication for a few connoisseurs of the first chapter of Aeneas MacDonald's wise and witty little treatise on Whisky... The printers have adhered to the Scottish spelling of 'Whisky'...’

MacDonald's ‘
Whisky’ is today regarded as perhaps the earliest modern book on whisky and certainly the first to treat the subject from the point of view of the drinker. It provides a passionate and energetic defence of the interests of the consumer against the producers and, well ahead of its time, promotes single malt whisky over blends.
  Aeneas MacDonald was the pseudonym of George Malcolm Thomson (1899-1996), then an Edinburgh-based writer and journalist. He adopted the non de plume in deference to his mother, who was a strict teetotaller! (The original Aeneas MacDonald was one of Bonnie Prince Charlie's earliest supporters, the so-called 'Men of Moidart', who acted as banker to the Jacobite troops during the 1745 Jacobite Rising. Thomson himself was an ardent Scottish nationalist though ironically he subsequently spent most of his life in London.)

Though in a long career Thomson wrote some 20 other books, and was appointed OBE in 1990 for services to journalism, this was his one and only publication on whisky. However, it will outlive his other works. MacDonald/Thomson was a close friend of Neil Gunn and influenced his 1935 classic
Whisky and Scotland.

Whisky’ remained out of print and all but unobtainable until a new edition in facsimile with an introduction by Ian Buxton was published by Canongate Press of Edinburgh in 2006.

Reference: Ian Buxton,
101 Legendary Whiskies, 221, 39, 53, 54, 169, 197.
Thin octavo (book size 21.2x14.6cm), pp. 24 [1 (limitation page)] [1]. Quarter black cloth, with yellow, white and black patterned paper boards, spine lettered in gilt.
  Condition: A near fine copy with light shelf wear; cracked at gutter between signature.   Ref: 102496   Price: HK$ 5,200