London: Chapman and Hall, 1859.
. A Tale of Two Cities. With Illustrations by H. K. Browne London: Chapman and Hall, 1859.
DICKENS, Charles. A Tale of Two Cities. With Illustrations by H.K. Browne. London: Chapman and Hall, 1859.
First edition, first issue. With all of Smith's internal flaws necessary for the first issue present, except page 213 is not misnumbered. Also, the "List of Plates" contains the "b" which is noted by Smith to have only been seen in the primary binding. Octavo (8 3/8 x 5 1/4 inches; 210 x 135 mm). viii, [2,], 254 pp. With sixteen inserted plates, including frontispiece and engraved vignette title, by Browne ['Phiz']. Without the publisher's catalog bound at the end .
Half polished tan calf, over tan cloth boards. Spine elaborately stamped in gilt. Spine with red and blue morocco spine labels, lettered in gilt. Top edge gilt. Front outer hinge is cracked but firm. Front inner hinge is cracked but holding. Some occasional light offsetting from plates, otherwise text is very clean. A small tear at the upper corner of page 89m not affecting text. Some leaves with some minor wrinkling. Overall a very good copy.
A Tale of Two Cities was first serialized in Dickens’s periodical All the Year Round, from April 30-November 26, 1859. Its appearance in monthly parts (July-December 1859) and book form mark Dickens’s return to his old publishers Chapman and Hall, after a long stay with Bradbury and Evans. The extremely large audience for the novel in All the Year Round, however, left less than the usual demand for the parts issue and, at first, for the book, both of which are now quite rare. This title also marks the author’s final collaboration with Phiz, Dickens’s most evocative and most sympathetic illustrator.
Hatton and Cleaver, 33lff. Smith I, 13.