“A word in earnest is as good as a speech": First Edition of Charles Dickens' Bleak House
Item Number: 133901
London: Bradbury Evans, 1853.
First edition of this Dickens’ classic. Octavo, bound in three quarters calf over marbled boards, gilt titles and tooling to the spine, all edges marbled, marbled endpapers. In near fine condition, contemporary bookplate to the front pastedown. Illustrated with engraved title page and 39 engraved plates by H.K. Browne. An exceptional example.
"In Bleak House for the first time [society] is seen as an absurdity, an irrelevance, almost a madness. A dark force from which the real people must escape in order to create another society of their own [Dickens] had been preparing for this novel all his life and, despite the calamities which had helped to provoke it in the first place, was even happy while he was writing it It might even be said that Bleak House cured the very malaise which was responsible for its composition" (Ackroyd, 649-50). "The Dickens cosmos, his phantasmagoric London and visionary England, emerges in Bleak House with a clarity and pungency that surpasses the rest of his work, before and after" (Bloom, 311).