London: Bradbury & Evans, 11 Bouverie Street, 1848. First Edition thus. Original Cloth. With the half-title. 8vo: (iii)-xvi,[2,errata],624pp, illustrated with 40 etched plates (with none of the inferior lithographed plates made as substitutes, after the etched plates were insufficient to meet demand) by Hablot K. Browne ("Phiz"), including a "dark plate" and four other horizontal plates (both innovations). Original diaper-grain green cloth, skillfully rebacked with spine laid down, pale yellow end papers, engraved title (dated 1848) preceding printed title. Errata leaf follows List of Plates in this copy. A very early issue, scarce in the publisher's original cloth, including most points of Smith's first issue, with Captain Cuttle's hook on left hand (title-page vignette), no page entry for frontispiece and vignette on p. xv, and "Delight" on p. 284, but with corrected spelling of captain on p. 324. An excellent example, pages and plates bright and fresh, with only trivial foxing and marginal toning (three plates more significantly affected). Smith I 8. Eckel, pp. 74-76. Podeschi (Gimbel Collection) A103. Grolier Dickens 155. Sadleir I 687. Johannsen (Phiz), pp. 241-308. Near Fine+. Item #BB1513
Dickens's seventh novel, first published in twenty monthly parts between October 1846 and April 1848, then complete in this single-volume edition. Smith calls "On the Dark Road," in which the "smooth blending of light and shadow on this illustration vividly contrasts it with the other illustrations in the novel, . . . a fine example of the dark plate process [and the first ever published]." (Smith) Dark plates were created using a machine process that tinted the etched plate and heightened its contrast. John Forster, Dickens's biographer, thought there was nothing in all of Dickens's writings better than the life and death of Paul Dombey. (Grolier) N. B. With few exceptions (always identified), we only stock books in exceptional condition, carefully preserved in archival, removable polypropylene sleeves. All orders are packaged with care and posted promptly. Satisfaction guaranteed.