A Lovely and Near Complete Set of the Original Parts Issue of Little DorritCharles Dickens. Little Dorrit. With Illustrations by H. K. Browne. London: Bradbury and Evans, 1857.
First edition, in the original twenty numbers bound in nineteen monthly parts (December 1855-June 1857). Octavo (8.875 x 5.625 inches; 226 x 143 mm.). xiv, 625, [1, blank] pages. Forty inserted plates, including frontispiece and added vignette, after etchings by "Phiz." Twenty-seven of the plates are horizontal plates, including eight "dark" plates. Some plates with tissue guards. First issue text, with "Rigaud" for "Blandois" on pages 469, 470, 472, and 473 in Part XV, and with the subsequent correction slip in Part XVI.
This set collates complete, with almost all wrappers correct (the back wrapper from Part XIX/XX is supplied from a Part XIV), all "Little Dorrit Advertisers," all back ads, and all slips.
In Part XI, the "Cassell's Illustrated Almanack, for 1857" ad at back is a variant not mentioned in Hatton and Cleaver, with "Cod Liver Oil Superseded by Baron Sonvillie's Axtra Mankaz" on page , followed by testimonials on pages 3, 4, 5, and 6, with "John Cassell's Coffees" at the foot of page 6, "The American Sugar-Coated Pills" on page 7, and "Taylor's Specific Liniment" on page 8.
In the original blue wrappers printed in black with a design by "Phiz" on the outside front wrappers, and advertisements (Edmiston & Son) on the inside front wrappers and on the inside (W. G. Taylor, Outfitter and Haberdasher) on the outside and (William S. Burton, Ironmonger) back wrappers. Most parts have been very neatly rebacked or have expert repairs to the spines. A few wrappers with short edges tears or small neat paper repairs or strengthening. A few text leaves have been roughly opened. The text leaves in Part X are entirely unopened. In Part XIII, the "Christmas and Winter's Evening Enjoyment" slip (24 pages) is partially unopened. The plates are generally slightly browned or darkened and foxed, especially at the edges. A few plates with marginal dampstains. There is some occasional offsetting onto each other, and onto the plate reverses from the adjacent advertisements or text leaves. Previous owner's ink signature at the head of three front wrappers (Parts IX, X, and XII) and on one or two ads. Housed in a blue cloth chemise and quarter royal blue morocco over marbled board book-backed slipcase, the spine decoratively tooled and lettered in gilt with five raised bands. The spine of the slipcase is very slightly faded. Overall, a very good set.
Little Dorrit was first published in book form on May 30, 1857. From the Victor Gulotta Collection.
Eckel, pages 82-85. Gimbel A140. Hatton and Cleaver, pages 305-333. Smith, Dickens, I, 12.
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