Oliver Twist; or the Parish Boy's Progress. By "Boz." In Three Volumes.
[ Dickens, Charles ].

London: Richard Bentley, 1838. First edition in book form, first issue, with "Boz" as the author on the title-page, and with the "Fireside" plate as the last one ("Rose Maylie and Oliver") in Volume III; in later issues, this was replaced with the "Church" plate. Twenty-four inserted plates by George Cruikshank. Covers with some light staining, including some dampstaining. First two volumes recased. Endpapers have a bit of dampstaining, extending a bit to gutter margins of first and last leaves in Volume III. Endpapers in Volume II have a few dark spots. Some light foxing and browning, but overall a good copy, with the plates quite clean. With the old label, "Bain Bookseller, 1 Haymarket" in Volume I. (James Bain Ltd. operated at that address between 1828 and 1901, later had two other addresses, and finally went out of business in 1967.) Housed in full burgundy cloth slipcase. Original moderate reddish-brown fine-diaper cloth, covers stamped in blind with arabesque design. Title and volume number in gilt on spines, "London/Bentley" stamped in gilt at the foot of the spines Three volumes, with Volu [iv], [1], 2-331, [1], (Item ID: 16611)


The publisher Bentley divided the printing task between two firms: Volume I was printed in a twelvemo format by Samuel Bentley; Volume II in an octavo format by Whiting; and Volume III preliminaries and signatures A-F and probably G by Whiting with the remaining text by Samuel Bentley, again in twelvemo format. This work was published on November 9, 1838. Dickens immediately objected to his name not being on the title-page, as well as to the "Fireside" plate. Within a week, copies were being issued with his name on the title, and with the "Church" plate substituted for the "Fireside" plate. Thus the first issue is rare.

Smith I, 4. Eckel, p. 59ff. Gimbel A27.

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