THE OLD CURIOSITY SHOP, and Other Tales. Charles Dickens.


With Numerous Illustrations by Cattermole and Browne. Philadelphia: Lea and Blanchard, 1841. Original dark brown fine-diaper grain cloth, with spine lettering and vignette in gilt.

First complete American Edition in book form. In 1840-1841 Lea & Blanchard issued THE OLD CURIOSITY SHOP (as the first novel within "Master Humphrey's Clock," as in the U. K.) in monthly parts; during serialization an edition containing the first twelve of the 21 parts was issued, with the title page dated 1840 and stating that there are 59 illustrations. At the conclusion of serialization, complete-novel copies dated 1841 were issued, with variant preliminary leaves.

Smith notes three variations of this edition, without citing any precedence among the three: "Cloth Issues A and B," which have a gilt border around the spine vignette and which differ only in their preliminary leaves, and a "further variation" with no such border and with preliminaries that are a combination of his "A" and "B" -- no Dickens portrait (a feature of "A") and no dedication on the MHC title verso (a feature of "B"). There would be later copies dated 1841 or 1842, with a different frontispiece illustration and with the additional mention of the illustrator Sibson.

This copy is "Cloth Issue A," with no Dickens portrait and with the dedication printed on the MHC title verso -- in original dark brown fine-diaper-grain cloth, with gilt border around the spine vignette. It is in very good-plus condition (very slight wear at the spine ends, a few leaves standing slightly proud). Smith pp 159-164; Podeschi (Yale) A61; Carr (UTexas) B153 (with a black cloth binding). Item #11135

Price: $550.00

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