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Item#: 127194 price:$1,100.00



DICKENS, Charles. The Chimes: A Goblin Story. London: Chapman and Hall, 1845. Small octavo, original gilt-stamped pictorial red cloth, all edges gilt. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. $1100.

First edition, second state, of Dickens' second Christmas book about the importance of hope and redemption, with 13 engraved illustrations by Leech, Maclise, Stanfield and Doyle, in lovely original cloth-gilt.

Upon completion of The Chimes, Dickens felt he had "written a tremendous book… It will make a great uproar I have no doubt" (Eckel, 116). Stemming from the Victorian tradition of didactic Christmas books, this work attempts to argue against a belief in the inherent wickedness of the poor—a common belief of the era—while showing the importance of helping people to improve their circumstances. The Chimes ended up being one of Dickens' most successful projects. Dickens sold nearly 20,000 copies of The Chimes in the first three months. It inspired five stage productions, all running within weeks of the book's publication. While critical opinion was not uniformly positive due to the radical nature of Dickens' story, many viewed Dickens as a "champion of the poor," a rare public figure authentically concerned with the struggles endemic to 1840s London (Northern Star). While Dickens' most beloved Christmas book is, of course, A Christmas Carol, The Chimes was incredibly popular in its own time and remained so for years. First edition, second state, with the Chapman & Hall imprint burnished out of the design on the engraved title page and re-engraved beneath the image. Eckel, 116-18. Smith II:5.

Front inner paper hinge tender, binding sound; small rub to foot of gently toned spine, gilt bright. A lovely, near-fine copy.

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