Hard Cover. London: Chapman & Hall, 1839. First Edition. Very Good.
Illustrations by Hablot K. Browne ("Phiz"). First edition, mixed state with "sister" and "letter" in the corrected state, many other points first state and uncorrected. Bound in contemporary three-quarter green calf, with five raised bands ruled in gilt, spine lettered in gilt, marbled paper-covered boards, and red sprinkled edges. Very good, with light marks to calf, some wear to paper-covered edges, bookseller's sticker to front pastedown, 19th century bookplate to front pastedown, light offsetting to front free endpaper from bookplate, moderate spotting and offsetting to plates, pages quite clean otherwise without nicks or tears. Overall, a handsomely bound and sturdy copy. Smith, I, 5; Hatton & Cleaver, p. 131. Nicholas Nickleby is Dickens's third novel, which he began writing while Oliver Twist was still in progress. Characteristic of Dickens's work, Nicholas Nickleby is a whirlwind of social satire with a complex network of characters and plotlines. The book highlights the controversy that surrounded Yorkshire boarding schools in the 1830s as news stories brought to light the abuse and neglect that was common among these institutions, known for accepting unwanted children from parents who paid high prices to send them anywhere they could. Dickens's villain, Wackford Squeers, was based on Walter Shaw, the real-life headmaster of Bowes Academy, one of the schools reported for allowing rampant abuse of its pupils. The book has since been adapted for theater, television, and film and remains one of Dickens's most well-known works. Item #CD156