With Forty-Three Engraved Plates
Posthumous Papers of the Pickwick Club.
London: Chapman & Hall, 1837.
First edition in book form of one of Dickens’ greatest works, mixed issue. Thick octavo (8 1/8 x 5 1/16 inches). xiv, [1, directions], [1, errata], 609, [1, blank] pp. With forty-three illustrations including frontispiece and vignette title-page. With the seven plates by Seymour and the remaining ones by Phiz. Originally issued in 20 parts from April 1836 to November 1837. With half-title, "Directions to Binder" and errata leaf. Includes marginal note on page 9 that was suppressed in later issues.
Modern full brown morocco by Bayntum-Riviere, gilt-stamped with a portrait of Dickens on front cover. Spine stamped in gilt with five raised bands. All edges gilt, gilt-turn-ins. Housed in a brown cloth open end slipcase. A fine copy with clean plates.
"From a literary standpoint the supremacy of this book has been... firmly established... It was written by Dickens when he was twenty-four and its publication placed the author on a solid foundation from which he never was removed.... It is quite probable that only Shakespeare’s Works, the Bible and perhaps the English Prayer Book, exceed "Pickwick Papers" in circulation" (Eckel, 17). "Never was a book received with more rapturous enthusiasm than that which greeted the Pickwick Papers!" (Allibone I:500). Pickwick would be the first volume in which Dickens was acknowledged as the author, rather than using his pen name, "Boz."
Gimbel A15. Hatton and Cleaver. Smith, I:3 Dickens,.