"LARGER AND BRIGHTER THAN THE REALITY"
DICKENS, Charles. The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby. London: Chapman and Hall, 1850. Octavo, twentieth-century full brown calf, raised bands, elaborately gilt-decorated spine, red and green morocco spine labels, all edges gilt.
Early edition of one of Dickens' most popular novels, illustrated with 39 etchings by Hablot Knight Browne ("Phiz") and the steel-engraved frontispiece portrait after the painting by Daniel Maclise, handsomely bound by Riviere & Son.
The plot, the characters, the dialogue, everything about the book "has the feel of theatre; it is as if Dickens saw human life conducted among lights of the stage, making it somehow larger and brighter than the reality" (Ackroyd, 283). Originally issued in 20 parts from April 1838 to October 1839. Bookplates, including that of noted book collector Herman Le Roy Edgar.
Plates and text fine, one tiny chip to spine head. A beautiful volume.