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BLEAK HOUSE
1852. With Illustrations by H. K. Browne. [Complete in the 20-in-19 monthly serial parts.] London: Bradbury and Evans, 1852-1853. Original light blue-green pictorial wrappers. First Edition, in the original 20-in-19 monthly serial parts that were issued from March 1852 through September 1853 (at the end of which time the novel was published in book form). Written just after DAVID COPPERFIELD and just before HARD TIMES, this is Dickens's famous attack on Chancery, the London legal system -- featuring such characters as the lawyer Tulkinghorn, the claimants Lord and Lady Dedlock, and of course the whole law firm of Jarndyce & Jarndyce. Though lives come to an end all around it, the case goes on and on, finally concluding when (surprise!) all of the fortune has been devoured by legal fees. Included are forty plates by "Phiz," of which ten are "dark plates" made possible by a new procedure.~This set has most of the ads with which a "perfectly complete" set would have been equipped -- lacking only a total of eight leaves of terminal ads in Parts I, XIII, XVI and XVIII. It also has every leaf of every "Bleak House Advertiser" at the beginning of each part, and includes the often-missing "Village Pastor" leaflet of Part XV. The set does also lack some of the Household Words slips that were sometimes (but not always) inserted after a part's plates.~As for condition, the set is generally very good -- with wear on the spines (most spines ends are chipped away), and there is one short closed tear on Part I's front wrapper. There is no restoration or "improvement" or "sophistication" of the parts, in any way. The plates (all present) do exhibit browning in their margins, and some foxing that in some cases edges into the image. In all, quite a collectible set of BLEAK HOUSE, housed in a (somewhat worn) morocco-backed slipcase with inner chemise. Hatton & Cleaver pp 273-304; Smith I pp 79-84.
      [Bookseller: Sumner & Stillman]
Last Found On: 2013-08-01           Check availability:      Biblio    

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