London: Bradbury and Evans, 1848. First edition. Finely bound by Morrell in three-quarter green morocco, all edges gilt, spines with intricate details and raised bands, marbled end papers. An excellent copy overall, with four additional portrait plates bound in, depicting characters from the novel.
Dombey and Son tackles a number of key themes that appear throughout Dickens' authorial career -- concerns about family duty, class position, child welfare, and the dangers of arranged marriages in particular. As the titular Dombey builds his shipping company, he fantasizes that his son will someday take over the business and continue his legacy. "Grim psychological realism, social commentary, comic absurdity, and symbolic transcendence are here brought together more than in any previous novel...Dombey and Son not only prepares the ground for Dickens' later masterpieces, but demands to be enjoyed for its own energy and richness" (Smith). Near Fine (Item #2883)