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Bleak House - DICKENS, Charles - 1853. 
London: Bradbury and Evans,, 1853. Octavo (210 x 134 mm). Contemporary green half calf, marbled sides, black morocco label lettered gilt to spine with gilt raised bands, marbled endpapers. Etched frontispiece, vignette title-page, and 38 plates (including the 10 "dark" plates) by "Phiz" ( H. K. Browne). Armorial bookplate to front pastedown. Some wear to board edges and tips, covers a little scuffed, some foxing to contents. An excellent copy. First edition, bound from parts, with the first-issue textual points as listed by Smith. H. K. Browne had experimented with the "dark plate" technique in Dombey and Son (1848) but in Bleak House their sombreness added a new tone to the illustration of Dickens's books. "As Dickens's vision of society darkened, Browne adjusted his techniques, pioneering in the use of 'dark plates', where the plate was machine-ruled in parallel grooves which printed an almost uniform tone either before or after the figures and background were hand drawn. These brooding, atmospheric designs harmonized with the gloomy, foggy world of Bleak House and Little Dorrit" (Robert Patten in The Oxford Companion to Charles Dickens, 2011, p. 59).
[Bookseller: Peter Harrington]
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