Dickens, Charles. The Christmas Books. Five volumes. Including First edition, first issue of "The Christmas Carol"
A complete set of the five Christmas books by Dickens. A Christmas carol, in prose, being a ghost story of Christmas. With illustrations by John Leech. London: Chapman & Hall, 1843. First edition, first published issue (preceded by the very rare trial issue), in the first issue binding. Original publisher's cinammon-colored cloth, vertically-waved, with stamping in gold and blind. The endpapers are hand-painted green. These are the same used in the trial issue, rejected because of expense. Some found their way into the first published issue. 6 3/8 inches (16 cm), all edges gilt as issued. , 166,  pp. Frontispiece and three hand-colored plates plus four wood engravings, all by Leech. Covers quite rubbed and soiled, head and toe of spine with some wear, slightly chipped, cocked; some separation on the rear joint. Within, endpapers cracked at hinge, occasional soiling.. * The Chimes. A goblin story or some bells that rang an old year out and a new year in. London: Chapman & Hall, 1845. First edition, first issue (with the imprint integral to the engraved title). Publisher's red cloth in gilt and blind. Same dimensions, all edges gilt as issued. , 175,  pp.; the first page is the ad for the Christmas Carol. Some rubbing and wear, chip to head of spine, name on endpaper, generally clean internally. * The cricket on the hearth. A fairy tale of home. London: printed and published for the author by Bradbury and Evans, 1846. First edition, first (and only) issue. Same dimensions, all edges gilt as issued. , 174,  pp., complete with half-title and ads. Some wear to extremities of spine, name on half-title, internally clean. * The battle of life. A love story. London: Bradbury & Evans, 1846. First edition, Eckel's fourth issue. Same dimensions, all edges gilt as issued. , [1-2, sectional title], 3-175 [colophon on verso of last page], ad leaf. The illustrations (by Doyle, Leech, Maclise et al) are intertextual. Some wear, front hinge almost seperated at gutter, rear hinge exposed, corners a bit bumped. * The haunted man and the ghost's bargain. A fancy for Christmas-time. London: Bradbury & Evans, 1848. First edition, first (and only) issue. Same dimensions, all edges gilt as issued. , 188 pp, intertextually illustrated. Slight split to foot of front joint, small chip to rear.
The Christmas Carol has all first issue textual points, as well as the first-issue binding. The "D" of "Dickens" is unbroken, and the gilt wreath on the upper cover is centered, with margins of 14 mm or so between the wreath and the surrounding blind tooling. The half-title is in blue and the title in blue and red, as called for. The "Stave I" reading is present.
The other works are all (with the exception of The battle of life) in first issue.
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