2 April 2008
DICKENS, Charles. A Curious Dance Round a Curious Tree. [London: St. Luke's Hospital, 1860].
8o (180 x 120 mm). (Lightly browned, one or two spots, some corners creased.) Half red morocco gilt by Stikeman and Co., original printed lilac-pink wrappers bound in (faint vertical crease caused by the original mailing envelope as usual). Provenance: Kenyon Starling (bookplate).
"TO RENDER THEIR HOSPITAL WORTHY OF THIS COUNTY AND THIS AGE" (p. 19.)
FIRST EDITION IN PAMPHLET FORM, FIRST ISSUE, with the appeal for funds on the last page of text in the same type as the main body of text. Dickens's account of his visit to St. Luke's Hospital for Lunatics on Christmas Eve (pp. 1-12) was first published in Household Words in 1852 and is a particularly moving description of the festivities enjoyed by the inmates and their carers that he witnessed that evening. It was reprinted in this pamphlet with Dickens's permission to raise money for the institution. Eckel, pp. 188-91; Yale/Gimbel B216.
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