The Posthumous Papers of the Pickwick Club; Illustrated in Color by C.E. Brock

The Brock Illustrated Edition
of Dickens' First Book
In a Charming Pictorial Binding by Bayntun

[BAYNTUN-RIVIERE, Binders]. DICKENS, Charles. The Posthumous Papers of the Pickwick Club. Illustrated in Color by C.E. Brock. London: George G. Harrap, n.d. [1930].

First Brock illustrated edition. Large octavo. xx, 687, [1, blank] pp. Sixteen color plates, including frontispiece.

Bound c. late 1980s by Bayntun-Riviere (stamp-signed on rear turn-in) in full crimson morocco with gilt-ruled border and large, central gilt-ruled pictorial panel of multicolored morocco inlays reproducing "Take this little villian away!" the plate facing page 134. Raised bands with gilt tooling, compartments decorated in gilt. Board edges and turn-ins decoratively gilt-tooled. A splendid copy.

The Posthumous Papers of the Pickwick Club was Dickens' first published novel, originally serialized in monthly parts by Chapman & Hall April 1836 through November 1837, and published in book form on November 17, 1837. Charles Dickens, struggling to establish himself as an author, had been selling stories to the Monthly Magazine and the Evening Chronicle that were popular and earned him an enthusiastic reception. Impressed, publisher Chapman & Hall approached him. The result was the creation of Mr. Pickwick, and an illustrious career. Dickens was twenty-five years old.

C[harles]. E[dmund]. Brock (1870-1938) was a widely published English line artist and book illustrator who earned his first book commission at age twenty. He became a very successful illustrator, best known for his line work, initially in the tradition of Hugh Thomson, but he was also a skilled colorist. Brock's work varied with the sort of story he was illustrating, some of it refined and described as "sensitive to the delicate, teacup-and-saucer primness and feminine outlook of the early Victorian novelists," while other work was "appreciative of the healthy, boisterous, thoroughly English characters," i.e. soldiers, rustics, and "horsey types." Other illustrations were grotesqueries drawn to amuse children looking at or reading storybooks.

Kelly, p. 164. Item #01934

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