frontispiece and title page
The New York Public Library, Berg Collection of
English and American Literature

An Invitation from the Author.
In this note to William Makepeace Thackeray, dated "Thirteenth March 1848," Dickens invites his colleague to a "solemn dinner" to celebrate the completion of "a certain immortal book," that is, Dombey and Son. Dickens closes: "It couldn't be done without you. Therefore, book it cher citoyen!" The two great novelists were never particularly close, but it is reported that, at Thackeray's funeral in 1863, Dickens "had a look of bereavement in his face which was indescribable. When all others had turned aside from the grave he still stood there, as if rooted to the spot, watching with almost haggard eyes every spadeful of dust that was thrown upon it."

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