London: Chapman and Hall, 1837. First edition. 8vo: [xvi], 609, , complete with 43 inserted plates, and the half-title. Many of the textual points are corrected, as usual for the book issue. Most plates are in their early state with page numbers rather than captions and without the Chapman and Hall imprints. Both Buss plates are laid in as well as various other variant states of several plates.
A lovely, 20th century binding by Riviere and Son in full purple crushed morocco, five raised bands on the spine, gilt detailing, top edge of page block gilt, lovely turn-ins and solid blue end papers. Binding in Fine condition, internal contents are generally clean although laid in variant plates show moderate darkening and foxing.
Dickens' first novel, showcasing his astounding talent for sketching charming, sympathetic characters, helped to launch his career. "Its main literary value and appeal was formed by its numerous memorable characters...The Pickwick Papers are mostly a series of humorous misadventures, with a bit of satire, that give some insight into the mores of Victorian society. You can witness Dickens here working on a few prototypes that will show up in later novels...you also see his social consciousness manifesting itself" (Inverarity). An important early work that remains beloved by Dickens' fans for its sensationalism and humor. Fine (Item #2256)