This is a hypothetical, but an interesting one (at least in my state of moderate intoxication.) It riffs off what little I can remember of the Amber series which I read about 25 years ago.
For all intents and purposes, all editions of D&D and it's clones are more or less compatible (not counting 4e in this discussion.) While the Original Boxed Set is what everything else builds upon, it's the SRD and the OGL from 3x that allowed for the clones and the surge of the OSR and added interest in the older editions. Castles & Crusades, heavily built upon the 3x core with old school sensibilities can be argued to be the Rosetta Stone of the editions.
So, is the "true" edition the one that started it all, the one that enabled the clones, the one that is a central translator or something else all together?
Yes, this is the product of many beers. There is no right answer. There is no wrong answer. There is just... beer ;)