First Edition, First Issue With the rare "Fireside" Plate
DICKENS, Charles. CRUIKSHANK, George. Oliver Twist: or, The Parish Boy’s Progress. By “Boz.” In Three Volumes. London: Richard Bentley , 1838.
First edition, first state, containing the rare "Fireside" plate, and "Boz " on the titles. Three octavo volumes (4 7/8 x 7 15/16 inches; 124 x 200 mm). Volumes I and III in twelves and II in eights. [iv], [1]-331, [1, blank]; [iv], [1]-307, [1. blank]; [ii], [1]-315, [1, blank] pp. No half-title called for in Volume III. With all internal flaws according to Smith present for volumes I & II. Volume III with all flaws except for the few that Smith notes as only in “some copies.”,According to Smith “The errors found in some copies of Volume III...resulted from different settings of G, and occur at random.” With twenty- four inserted engraved plates by George Cruikshank, including frontispieces. An additional plate not called for inserted in volume I. The plate entitled “Mr. Fagin and his pupil recovering Nancy” from Volume III is switched positions with the plate entitled “Mr. Claypole as he appeared with his master was out.”from volume II.

Later brown Morocco, bound by W. Pender. Boards ornately tooled and ruled in gilt. Gilt star corner devices. Spines tooled and lettered in gilt. Gilt dentelles. Overall an excellent set. Previous owner's bookplate in volume I. Some toning and staining to plates, but generally not affecting the illustrations with the exception of the plate entitled “Oliver escapes...” in Volume I. The text with a minor bit of foxing and a few small corner dampstains, but overall very clean. Overall a very nice set.

For this novel, Dickens’s first in the standard three-volume form, Bentley divided the printing task between two firms: Volume I was printed in a twelvemo format by Samuel Bentley; Volume II in octavo format by Whiting; and Volume III preliminaries and signatures A-F and probably G by Whiting with the remaining text by Samuel Bentley, again in twelvemo format. The three-decker publication date was 9 November 1839, and within a week, at Dickens’s insistence, the title-pages were changed to include his name, and the “Church” version of the final plate (“Rose Maylie and Oliver”) was substituted for the “Fireside” version. This copy has both "Boz" on the title page as well as the original "Fireside" plate. The true first issue is quite rare.

Gimbel. Hatton and Cleaver,. Smith, Dickens,4.

HBS # 68398 $5,000