2 April 2008
DICKENS, Charles. The Life and Adventures of Martin Chuzzlewit. London: Chapman & Hall, 1844.
8o (222 x 143 mm). Etched frontispiece, vignette title-page, and 38 plates by Hablot K. Browne ["Phiz"] (some plates darkened at edges, some occasional spotting). (Some minor offsetting from plates.) Original blue blind-stamped diagonally ribbed cloth, spine gilt, uncut (hinges starting, some minor rubbing); blue cloth chemise and quarter morocco slipcase. Provenance: Frederick Edwin Smith, Viscount Birkenhead (1872-1930), 20th century British politician and Lord Chancellor under Lloyd George (bookplate); Kenyon Starling (bookplate).
FIRST EDITION IN BOOK FORM of Dickens's story of English life and manners. This copy with the signpost reading "100£" on the vignette title and with the later issue 14-line errata. Martin Chuzzlewit was not the commercial success that Dickens's other novels had been, leading to a bitter break with Chapman and Hall. After the bound volumes of Chuzzlewit came out in July 1884, Dickens would have no further dealings with his former publisher until 1859. Eckel, pp.71-73; Smith I:7. FINE COPIES IN CLOTH ARE SCARCE.
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