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Grolier Club Exhibitions

Charles Dickens

Dickens_Oliver Twist.jpg

Oliver Twist; or, The Parish Boy's Progress. By "Boz".

Charles Dickens. 3 vols. London: Richard Bentley, 1838. With 24 plates by George Cruikshank. 

First edition, mixed issue. This copy has the title-pages from the first issue with the author’s name as ‘Boz’ (it was changed to Dickens in the second issue) and the later ‘Church’ plate, which replaced the ‘Fireside’ plate of the first issue. 

Oliver Twist exemplifies Dickens’s use of the novel as an instrument for social reform. Through the misadventures of the impoverished orphan Oliver, Dickens criticized the exploitation of child labor in early Industrial England.