2 April 2008
[OLIVER TWIST]. -- POLLOCK, Benjamin, publisher. Pollock's Juvenile Drama. Oliver Twist, or the Parish Boy's Progress. A Drama in three acts. London, [after 1876].
16o text booklet (163 x 101 mm). Original printed peach wrappers; and 23 hand-colored plates (172 x 218 mm), loose as issued, comprising: 6 sheets containing characters, 13 sheets contain scenes, one sheet is a set piece, and 3 sheets contain theatre wings. Enclosed in full red morocco pull-off case, with inner watered silk folder. Provenance: George Barr McCutcheon (his sale, American Art Association, 21 April 1926, lot 48); Kenyon Starling (bookplate).
Later issue. The text pamphlet is accompanied by the complete set of colored plates depicting, characters, sets and scenes for this toy theatre. Of the plates, 8 bear Pollock's name, and the remainder contain the name J. Redington, Pollock's father-in-law and predecessor in the business. While this toy theatre is often dated as "circa 1839" (as in the McCutcheon sale catalogue), this copy must have been published circa 1870s when Pollock began publishing under his own name. "The sheets of scenes and characters were published (penny plain and twopence coloured) by Redington and subsequently by his son-in-law, Benjamin Pollock (died 1937). Oliver Twist was the only one of Dickens's works to be issued in this form, a tribute to its melodramatic potential" Suzannet Treasures.
Suzannet/Dickens House E35; Suzannet Treasures 30; University of Texas/VanderPoel B109 (dated ca 1839); Yale/Gimbel C35 (ca 1860?).
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