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Other Works by the same Author : 

The Book of Wit. 
The History of Pickwick. 


Recreations of a Literary Man. 
Memoirs of an Author. 



Pickwickian Manners and Customs 7 

" Monumental Pickwick "- - 36 

"Boz" and "Bozzy" - 52 

Pickwickian Originals 70 

Concerning the Plates and Extra Plates 

and "States" of Pickwick - - 91 


No English book has so materially in- 
creased the general gaiety of the country, 
or inspired the feeling of comedy to such a 
degree as, " The Pickwick Club." It is now 
some " sixty years since" this book was 
published, and it is still heartily appreciated. 
What English novel or story is there which 
is made the subject of notes and com- 
mentaries on the most elaborate scale; 
whose very misprints and inconsistencies 
are counted up ; whose earliest " states of 
the plates " are sought out and esteemed 
precious ? " Pickwick," wonderful to say, 
is the only story that has produced a literature 
of its own quite a little library and has 
kept artists, topographers, antiquaries, and 
collectors all busily at work. 

There seems to be some mystery, almost 


miracle, here. A young fellow of four-and- 
twenty throws off, or rather " rattles off," in 
the exuberance of his spirits, a never-flagging 
series of incidents and characters. The 
story is read, devoured, absorbed, all over the 
world, and now, sixty years after its appear- 
ance, new and yet newer editions are being 
issued. All the places alluded to and described 
in the book have in their turn been lifted 
into fame, and there are constantly appear- 
ing in magazines illustrated articles on 
"Rochester and Dickens," " Dickens Land," 
" Dickens' London," and the rest. Wonder- 
ful ! People, indeed, seem never to tire of 
the subject the same topics are taken up 
over and over again. The secret seems to be 
that the book was a living thing, and still 
lives. It is, moreover, perhaps the best, 
most accurate picture of character and 
manners that are quite gone by : in it the 
meaning and significance of old buildings, 
old inns, old churches, and old towns are 
reached, and interpreted in most interesting 


fashion; the humour, bubbling over, and 
never forced, and always fresh, is sustained 
through some six hundred closely-printed 
pages ; all which, in itself, is a marvel and 
unapproached. It is easy, however, to talk 
of the boisterousness, the "caricature," the 
unlicensed recklessness of the book, the lack 
of restraint, the defiance of the probabilities. 
It is popular and acceptable all the same. 
But there is one test which incontestably 
proves its merit, and supplies its title, to be 
considered all but " monumental." This is 
its prodigious fertility and suggestiveness. 

At this moment a review is being made of 
the long Victorian Age, and people are 
reckoning up the wonderful changes in life 
and manners that have taken place within 
the past sixty years. These have been so 
imperceptibly made that they are likely to 
escape our ken, and the eye chiefly settles on 
some few of the more striking and monu- 
mental kind, such as the introduction of 
railways, of ocean steamships, electricity, 


and the like. But no standard of 
comparison could be more useful or more 
compendious than the immortal chronicle of 
PICKWICK, in which the old life, not forgotten 
by some of us, is summarised with the com- 
pleteness of a history. The reign of 
Pickwick, like that of the sovereign, began 
some sixty years ago. Let us recall some of 
these changes. 

To begin : We have now no arrest for 
debt, with the attendant sponging-houses, 
Cursitor Street, sheriffs' officers, and 
bailiffs; and no great Fleet Prison, Marshal- 
sea, or King's Bench for imprisoning debtors. 
There are no polling days and hustings, with 
riotous proceedings, or " hocussing " of 
voters ; and no bribery on a splendid scale. 

Drinking and drunkenness in society have 
quite gone out of fashion. Gentlemen at a 
country house rarely or never come up from 
dinner, or return from a cricket match, in an 
almost "beastly " state of intoxication; and 
"cold punch" is not very constantly drunk 


through the day. There are no elopements 
now in chaises and four, like Miss Wardle's, 
with headlong pursuit in other chaises and 
four; nor are special licenses issued at a 
moment's notice to help clandestine 
marriages. There is now no frequenting of 
taverns and " free and easies " by gentlemen, 
at the "Magpie and Stump" and such 
places, nor do persons of means take up their 
residence at houses like the " George and 
Vulture" in the City. No galleried inns 
(though one still lingers on in Holborn), are 
there, at which travellers put up : there were 
then nearly a dozen, in the Borough and else- 
where. There are no coaches on the great 
roads, no guards and bulky drivers ; no gigs 
with hoods, called "cabs," with the driver's 
seat next his fare; no "hackney coaches," 
no " Hampstead stages," no "Stanhopes" 
or "guillotined cabriolets" whatever they 
were or "mail-carts," the "pwettiest thing" 
driven by gentlemen. And there are no 
" sedan chairs " to take Mrs. Dowler home. 


There are no "poke" or "coal-scuttle" 
bonnets, such as the Miss Wardles wore; 
no knee-breeches and gaiters ; no " tights," 
with silk stockings and pumps for evening 
wear ; no big low-crowned hats, no striped 
vests for valets, and, above all, no gorgeous 
"uniforms," light blue, crimson, and gold, 
or "orange plush," such as were worn by the 
Bath gentlemen's gentlemen. "Thunder 
and lightning" shirt buttons, "mosaic 
studs " whatever they were are things of 
the past. They are all gone. Gone too is 
" half-price " at the theatres. At Bath, the 
" White Hart " has disappeared with its 
waiters dressed so peculiarly "like West- 
minster boys." We have no Serjeants now 
like Buzfuz or Snubbin : their Inn is 
abolished, and so are all the smaller Inns 
Clement's or Clifford's where the queer 
client lived. Neither are valentines in high 
fashion. Chatham Dockyard, with its 
hierarchy, " the Clubbers," and the rest, has 
been closed. No one now gives dfy'efads, not 


dejeuners; or " public breakfasts," such as the 
authoress of the " Expiring Frog " gave. 
The " delegates " have been suppressed, and 
Doctors' Commons itself is levelled to the 
ground. The " Fox under the Hill" has 
given place to a great hotel. The old 
familiar "White Horse Cellars" has been 
rebuilt, made into shops and a restaurant. 
There are no " street keepers " now, but the 
London Police. The Eatanswill Gazette and 
its scurrilities are not tolerated. Special 
constables are rarely heard of, and appear 
only to be laughed at : their staves, tipped 
with a brass crown, are sold as curios. 
Turnpikes, which are found largely in 
" Pickwick," have been suppressed. The 
abuses of protracted litigation in Chancery 
and other Courts have been reformed. No 
papers are " filed at the Temple " whatever 
that meant. The Pound, as an incident of 
village correction has, all but a few, 

Then for the professional classes, which 


are described in the chronicle with such 
graphic power and vivacity. As at this 
time "Boz" drew the essential elements of 
character instead of the more superficial 
ones his later practice there is not much 
change to be noted. We have the medical 
life exhibited by Bob Sawyer and his friends; 
the legal world in Court and chambers 
judges, counsel, and solicitors are all much 
as they are now. Sir Frank Lockwood has 
found this subject large enough for treatment 
in his little volume, "The Law and Lawyers 
of Pickwick." It may be thought that no 
judge of the pattern of Stareleigh could be 
found now, but we could name recent per- 
formances in which incidents such as, " Is 
your name Nathaniel Daniel or Daniel 
Nathaniel ? " have been repeated. Neither 
has the blustering of Buzfuz or his sophistical 
plaintiveness wholly gone by. The " cloth " 
was represented by the powerful but revolt- 
ing sketch of Stiggins, which, it is .strange, 
was not resented by the Dissenters of the 


day, and also by a more worthy specimen in 
the person of the clergyman at Dingley Dell. 
There are the mail-coach drivers, with the 
" ostlers, boots, countrymen, gamekeepers, 
peasants, and others," as they have it in the 
play-bills. Truly admirable, and excelling 
the rest, are " Boz's " sketches actually 
"living pictures" of the fashionable foot- 
men at Bath, beside which the strokes in 
that diverting piece " High Life below 
Stairs" seem almost flat. The simperings of 
these gentry, their airs and conceit, we may 
be sure, obtain now. Once coming out of a 
Theatre, at some fashionable performance, 
through a long lane of tall menials, one 
fussy aristocrat pushed one of them out of 
his way. The menial contemptuously 
pushed him back. The other in a rage said, 
" How dare you? Don't you know, I'm the 

Earl of " "Well," said the other 

coldly, " If you be a Hearl, can't you be'ave 

After the wedding at Manor Farm we find 


that bride and bridegroom did not set off from 
the house on a wedding tour, but remained 
for the night. This seemed to be the 
custom. Kissing, too, on the Pickwickian 
principles, would not now, to such an extent, 
be tolerated. There is an enormous amount 
in the story. The amorous Tupman had 
scarcely entered the hall of a strange house 
when he began osculatory attempts on the 
lips of one of the maids; and when Mr. 
Pickwick and his friends called on Mr. 
Winkle, sen., at Birmingham, Bob Sawyer 
made similar playful efforts being called an 
" odous creetur " by the lady. In fact, the 
custom seemed to be to kiss when and 
wherever you could conveniently. Getting 
drunk after any drinking, and at any time of 
the day, seemed to be common enough. 
There was a vast amount of open fields, 
&c., about London which engendered the 
" Cockney sportsman." He disappeared as 
the fields were built over. We have no 


longer the peculiar "stand-up" collars, or 
" gills," and check neck-cloths. 

But Mr. Bantam's costume at the Bath 
Assembly, shows the most startling change. 
Where is now the "gold eye glass?" we 
know that eye glass, which was of a solid 
sort, not fixed on the nose, but held to the 
eye a " quizzing glass," and folding up on a 
hinge "a broad black ribbon" too; the 
"gold snuffbox;" gold rings "innumerable" 
on the fingers, and "a diamond pin " on his 
" shirt frill," a " curb chain " with large gold 
seals hanging from his waistcoat (a "curb 
chain" proper was then a little thin chain 
finely wrought, of very close links.) Then 
there was the " pliant ebony cane, with a 
heavy gold top." Ebony, however, is not 
pliant, but the reverse black was the word 
intended. Then those "smalls" and stock- 
ings to match. Mr. Pickwick, a privileged 
man, appeared on this occasion, indeed 
always, in his favourite white breeches and 
gaiters, In fact, on no occasion save one, 


when he wore a great-coat, does he appear 
without them. Bantam's snuff was " Prince's 
mixture," so named after the Regent, and his 
scent "\Bouquet du Roi" "Prince's mixture" 
is still made, but "Bouquet du Roi" is 

Perker's dress is also that of the stage 
attorney, as we have him now, and recognize 
him. He would not be the attorney without 
that dress. He was "all in black, with 
boots as shiny as his eyes, a low white neck- 
cloth, and a clean shirt with a frill to it." 
This, of course, meant that he put on one 
every day, and is yet a slight point of 
contact with Johnson, who described some- 
one as being only able to go out "on clean 
shirt days ;" a gold watch and seals depended 
from his Fob. " Depended" is a curious use 
of the word, and quite gone out. 

Another startling change is in the matter 
of duels. The duels in Pickwick come about 
quite as a matter of course, and as a common 
social incident. In the "forties"! recall a 


military uncle of my own a gentleman, like 
uncle Toby handing his card to some one 
in a billiard room, with a view to "a 
meeting." Dickens' friend Forster was at one 
time "going out" with another gentleman. 
Mr. Lang thinks that duelling was prohibited 
about 1844, and "Courts of Honour" 
substituted. But the real cause was the 
duel between Colonel Fawcett and Lieut. 
Munro, brothers-in-law, when the former 
was killed. This, and some other tragedies 
of the kind, shocked the public. The 
"Courts of Honour," of course, only affected 
military men. 

Mr. Pickwick, himself, had nearly " gone 
out" on two or three occasions, once with Mr. 
Slammer, once with Mr. Magnus ; while his 
scuffle with Tupman would surely have led 
to one. Winkle, presumed to be a coward, 
had no less than three "affairs" on 
his hands : one with Slammer, one with 
Dowler, and one with Bob Sawyer. At Bob 
Sawyer's Party, the two medical students, 



tendered their cards. For so amiable a man, 
Mr. Pickwick had some extraordinary fail- 
ings. He seems to have had no restraint 
where drink was in the case, and was 
hopelessly drunk about six times on three 
occasions, at least, he was preparing to 
assault violently. He once hurled an ink- 
stand '; he once struck a person ; once 
challenged his friend to "come on." Yet 
the capital comedy spirit of the author 
carries us over these blemishes. 

When Sam was relating to his master the 
story of the sausage maker's disappearance, 
Mr. Pickwick, horrified, asked had he been 
"Burked ? " There Boz might have repeated 
his apologetic footnote, on Jingle's share in 
the Revolution of 1830. " A remarkable 
instance of his force of prophetic imagination, 
etc." For the sausage story was related in 
the year of grace 1827, and Burke was 
executed in 1829, some two years later. 

Mr. Lang has suggested that the bodies 
Mr. Sawyer and his friend subscribed for, 


were " snatched," but he forgets that this 
traffic was a secret one, and the bodies were 
brought to the private residence of the physi- 
cians, the only safe way ( Vide the memoirs of 
Sir A. Cooper). At a great public Hospital 
the practice would be impossible. 

" Hot elder wine, well qualified with brandy 
and spice," is a drink that would not now be 
accepted with enthusiasm at the humblest 
wedding, even in the rural districts : we are 
assured that sound " was the sleep and 
pleasant were the dreams that followed." 
Which is not so certain. The cake was cut 
and "passed through the ring," also an 
exploded custom, whatever its meaning was. 
In what novel nowadays would there be an 
allusion to "Warren's blacking," or to 
" Rowland's oil," which was, of course, 
their famous " Macassar." These articles, how- 
ever, may still be procured, and to that oil we 
owe the familiar interposing towel or piec&of 
embroidery the " antimacassar," devised to 
protect the sofa or easy chair from the 


unguent of the hair. " Moral pocket handker- 
chiefs," for teaching religion to natives of the 
West Indies, combining amusement with 
instruction, "blending select tales with wood- 
cuts," are no longer used. 

Old Temple Bar has long since dis- 
appeared, so has the Holborn Valley. The 
Fleet was pulled down about ten years after 
Pickwick, but imprisonment for debt con- 
tinued until 1860 or so. Indeed Mr. Lang 
seems to think it still goes on, for he says it 
is now " disguised as imprisonment for 
contempt of Court." This is a mistake. 
In the County Courts when small debts 
under 3 los. are sued for, the judge will 
order a small weekly sum to be paid in 
discharge ; in case of failure to pay, he will 
punish the disobedience by duress not 
exceeding fifteen days a wholly different 
thing from imprisonment for debt. 

vWhere now are the Pewter Pots, and the 
pot boy with his strap of " pewters?" we 
would have to search for them now. Long 


cut glasses have taken their place. Where, 
too, is the invariable Porter, drunk almost 
exclusively in Pickwick ? Bass had not 
then made its great name. There is no 
mention of Billiard tables, but much about 
Skittles and Bagatelle, which were the 
pastimes at Taverns. 

Then the Warming Pan ! Who now " does 
trouble himself about the Warming Pan ? " 
which is yet "a harmless necessary and I 
will add a comforting article of domestic 
furniture." Observe necessary, as though 
every family had it as an article of their 
"domestic furniture." It is odd to think of 
Mary going round all the beds in the 
house, and deftly introducing this " article " 
between the sheets. Or was it only for the old 
people : or in chilly weather merely ? On 
these points we must be unsatisfied. The 
practice, however, points to a certain 
effeminacy the average person of our day 
would not care to have his bed so treated 
with invalids the " Hot Water Bottle" has 


" usurped its place." We find this super- 
annuated instrument in the "antique" 
dealers' shops, at a good figure a quaint 
old world thing, of a sort of old-fashioned cut 
and pattern. There only do people appear 
to trouble themselves about it. 

" Chops and tomato sauce." This too is 
superannuated also. A more correct taste 
is now chops au naturel, and relying on their 
own natural juices ; but we have cutlets, 
with tomatos. 

Again, are little boys no longer clad in " a 
tight suit of corduroy, spangled with brass 
buttons of very considerable size : " indeed 
corduroy is seldom seen save on the figures 
of some chic ladies. And how fortunate to 
live in days when a smart valet could be 
secured for twelve pounds a year, and 
two suits ;* and not less. 

Surprising too was the valet's accustomed 
dress. "A grey coat, a black hat, with a 

* As I write it is mentioned in some "society case" that 
the valet received 63 a year, and 305. a month "beer 


cockade on it, a pink striped waistcoat, 
light breeches and gaiters." What too were 
"bright basket buttons" on a brown coat? 
Fancy Balls too, like Mrs. Leo Hunter's, 
were given in the daytime, and caused no 
astonishment. Nor have we lodging-houses 
with beds on the " twopenny rope " principle. 
There are no "dry arches " of Waterloo 
Bridge : though here I suspect Boz was 
confounding them with those of the Adelphi. 

Gone too are the simple games of child- 
hood. Marbles for instance. We recall 
Serjeant Buzfuz's pathetic allusion to little 
Bardell's "Alley Tors and Commoneys; 
the long familiar cry of ' knuckle down ' is 
neglected." Who sees a boy playing marbles 
now in the street or elsewhere ? Mr. Lang 
in his edition gives us no lore about this 
point. "Alley Tors" was short for 
" Alabaster," the material of which the best 
marbles were made. 

" Tor " however, is usually spelt "Taw." 
"Commoneys" were the inferior or 


commoner kind. " Knuckle down," accord- 
ing to our recollections, was the laying the 
knuckle on the ground for a shot. " Odd 
and even" was also spoken of by the Serjeant. 
Another game alluded to, is mysteriously 
called " Tip-cheese "of which the latest 
editor speculates "probably Tip-cat was 
meant : the game at which Bunyan was 
distinguishing himself when he had a call." 
The "cat" was a plain piece of wood, 
sharpened at both ends. I suppose made 
to jump, like a cat. But unde "cheese," 
unless it was a piece of rind that was 

"Flying the garter" is another of the 
Pickwickian boy games. Talking with a 
very old gentleman, lately, I thought of 
asking him concerning " Flying the garter : " 
he at once enlightened me. It was a familiar 
thing he remembered well " when a boy." 
It was a sort of " Leap Frog," exercise 
only with a greater and longer spring : he 


spoke also of a shuffle of the feet during the 

And again. There is a piquant quaint- 
ness in the upside-down turning of every 
thing in this wonderful Book. Such as 
Perker's eyes, which are described as playing 
with his " inquisitive nose " a " perpetual 
game of" what, think you? Bo-Peep ? 
not at all : but " peep-bo." How odd and 
unaccountable ! We all knew the little 
"Bo-peep," and her sheep but "peep-bo" 
is quite a reversal. 

Gas was introduced into London about the 
year 1812 and was thought a prodigiously 
"brilliant illuminant." But in the Pick- 
wickian days it was still in a crude state 
and we can see in the first print that of the 
club room only two attenuated jets over the 
table. In many of the prints we find the dip 
or mould candle, which was used to light 
Sam as he sat in the coffee room of the Blue 
Boar. Mr. Nupkins' kitchen was not lit by 


As to this matter of light it all depends 
on habit and accommodating. When a boy 
I have listened to " Ivanhoe " read out 
O enchantment ! by the light of two "mould" 
candles the regular thing which required 
" snuffing " about every ten minutes, and 
snuffing required dexterity. The snuffers 
laid on a long tray were of ponderous 
construction ; it was generally some one's 
regular duty to snuff how odd seems this 
now ! The " plaited wicks " which came 
later were thought a triumph, and the 
snuifers disappeared. They also are to be 
seen in the Curio Shops. 

How curious, too, the encroachment of a 
too practical age on the old romance. " Faint- 
ing " was the regular thing in the Pick- 
wickian days, in any agitation ; " burnt 
feathers " and the " sal volatile " being the 
remedy. The beautiful, tender and engaging 
creatures we see in the annuals, all fainted 
regularly and knew how to faint were 
perhaps taught it. Thus when Mr. Pickwick 


was assumed to have " proposed " to his 
landlady, she in business-like fashion 
actually " fainted ; " now-a-days " fainting " 
has gone out as much as duelling. 

In the travellers' rooms at Hotels in the 
" commercial " room we do not see people 
smoking " large Dutch pipes " nor is 
" brandy and water " the only drink of the 
smoking room. Mr. Pickwick and his 
friends were always " breaking the waxen 
seals" of their letters while Sam, and 
people of his degree, used the wafer. (What 
by the way was the " fat little boy " in the 
seal of Mr. Winkle's penitential letter to 
his sire ? Possibly a cupid.) Snuff taking 
was then common enough in the case of 
professional people like Perker. 

At this moment there is to be seen in the 
corner of many an antique Hall Sedan chair 
laid up in ordinary of black leather, 
bound with brass-nails. We can well recall 
in our boyish days, mamma in full dress and 
her hair in " bands," going out to dine in her 


chair. On arriving at the house the chair was 
taken up the steps and carried bodily into 
the Hall the chair men drew out their poles, 
lifted the head, opened the door and the 
dame stepped out. The operation was not 
without its state. 

Gone too are the " carpet bags " which 
Mr. Pickwick carried and also Mr. Slurk 
(why he brought it with him into the kitchen 
is not very clear).* 

Skates were then spelt " Skaits." The 
" Heavy smack," transported luggage 
to the Provinces by river or canal. The 
" Twopenny Postman " is often alluded to. 
" Campstools," carried about for use, excited 
no astonishment. Gentlemen don't go to 
Reviews now, as Mr. Wardle did, arrayed 
in " a blue coat and bright buttons, corduroy 
(Boz also spells it corderoy] breeches and top 
boots," nor ladies " in scarfs and feathers." 
It is curious, by the way, that Wardle talks 

* Not long since, we noticed the general merriment at the 
Victoria Station on the apparition of one of these curios 
carried by a rural looking man. 


something after the fashionable manner of 
our day, dropping his g's as who should 
say " huntin'," or " rippin' " " I spent some 
evnins" he says "at your club." "My gals," 
he says also. "Capons" are not much eaten 
now. "Drinking wine" or " having a glass 
of wine" has gone out, and with it Mr. 
Tupman's gallant manner of challenge to a 
fair one, i.e. " touching the enchanting 
Rachel's wrist with one hand and gently 
elevating his bottle with the other." " Pope 
Joan" is little played now, if at all; "Fish" 
too ; how rarely one sees those mother-of- 
pearl fish ! The " Cloth is not drawn;' and 
the table exposed to view, to be covered with 
dessert, bottles, glasses, etc. The shining 
mahogany was always a brave show, and 
we fear this comes of using cheap made up 
tables of common wood. Still we wot of 
some homes, old houses in the country, where 
the practice is kept up. It is evident that 
Mr. Wardle's dinner was at about 3 or 4 
o'clock, for none was offered to the party 


that arrived about 6. This we may presume 
was the mode in old fashioned country 
houses. Supper came at eleven. 

A chaise and four could go at the pace 
of fifteen miles an hour. 

A " 1000 horse-power " was Jingle's idea 
of extravagant speed by steam agency. Now 
we have got to 4, 5, and 10 thousand horse- 
power. Gentlemen's " frills " in the daytime 
are never seen now. Foot gear took the 
shape of "Hessians'" "halves," "painted 
tops," " Wellington's" or "Bluchers." There 
are many other trifles which will evi- 
dence these changes. We are told of 
the " common eighteen-penny French skull 
cap." Note common it is exhibited on Mr. 
Smangle's head a rather smartish thing 
with a tassel. Night caps, too, they are surely 
gone by now : though a few old people may 
wear them, but then boys and young men all 
did. It also had a tassel. There is the " Frog 
Hornpipe," whatever dance that was : the 
"pousette;" while "cold srub," which 


is riot in much vogue now, was the drink of 
the Bath Footmen. " Botany Bay ease, and 
New South Wales gentility," refer to the old 
convict days. This indeed is the most 
startling transformation of all. For instead 
of Botany Bay, and its miserable associa- 
tions, we have the grand flourishing 
Australia, with its noble cities, Parliaments 
and the rest. Gone out too, we suppose, 
the "Oxford -mixture trousers;" "Oxford 
grey" it was then called. 

Then for Sam's " Profeel machine." Mr. 
Andrew Lang in his notes wonders what 
this "Profeel machine" was, and fancies 
it was the silhouette process. This 
had nothing to do with the " Profeel 
machine " which is described in " Little 
Pedlington," a delightful specimen of 
Pickwickian humour, and which ought to be 
better known than it is. "There now," 
said Daubson, the painter of " the all but 
breathing Grenadier," (alas ! rejected by the 
Academy). "Then get up and sit down, if 


you please, mister." " He pointed to a narrow 
high-backed chair, placed on a platform ; 
by the side of the chair was a machine of 
curious construction, from which protruded 
a long wire. * Heady stiddy, mister.' He 
then slowly drew the wire over my head and 
down my nose and chin." Such was the 
" Profeel machine." 

There are many antiquated allusions in 
Pickwick which have often exercised the 
ingenuity of the curious. Sam's " Fanteegs," 
has been given up in despair as though 
there were no solution yet, Professor Skeat, 
an eminent authority, has long since 
furnished it.* 

"Through the button hole " a slang term 
for the mouth, has been well " threshed out " 
as it is called. Of "My Prooshian Blue," as 
his son affectedly styled his parent, Mr. 
Lang correctly suggests the solution, that the 
term came of George IV's intention of chang- 
* Vide " History of Piokwick," 


ing the uniform of the Army to Blue. But 
this has been said before. 

Boz in his Pickwickian names was fond 
of disguising their sense to the eye, though 
not to the ear. Thus Lady Snuphanuph, 
looks a grotesque, but somewhat plausible 
name snuff-enough a further indication 
of the manners and customs. So with 
Lord Mutanhed, i.e " Muttonhead." Mallard, 
Serjeant Snubbin's Clerk, I have suspected, 
may have been some Mr. Duck whom 
" Boz" had known in that line. 


The fruitfulness of Pickwick, and amazing 
prolificness, that is one of its marvels. It is 
regularly "worked on," like Dante or 
Shakespeare. The Pickwickian Library is 
really a wonder. It is intelligible how a 
work like Boswell's "Johnson," full of 
allusions and names of persons who have 
lived, spoken, and written, should give rise 
to explanation and commentaries ; but a work 
of mere imagination, it would be thought, 
could not furnish such openings. As we 
have just seen, Pickwick and the other 
characters are so real, so artfully blended 
with existing usages, manners, and localities, 
as to become actual living things. 

Mere panegyric of one's favourite is idle. So 
I lately took a really effective way of proving 
the surprising fertility of the work and of its 
power of engendering speculation and illustra- 


tion. I set about collecting all that has been 
done, written, and drawn on the subject dur- 
ing these sixty years past, together with all 
those lighter manifestations of popularity 
which surely indicate "the form and 
pressure " of its influence. The result is now 
before me, and all but fills a small room. 
When set in proper order and bound, it will 
fill over thirty great quartos " huge armfuls " 
as Elia has it. In short, it is a "Monumental 

The basis of The Text is of course, the 
original edition of 1836. There are specimens 
of the titles and a few pages of every known 
edition ; the first cheap or popular one ; the 
"Library" edition; the " Charles Dickens " 
ditto ; the Edition de Luxe ; the " Victoria" : 
"Jubilee," edited by C. Dickens the younger; 
editions at a shilling and at sixpence ; the 
edition sold for one penny ; the new " Gads- 
hill," edited by Andrew Lang ; with the 
" Roxburghe," edited by F. Kitton, presently 
to be published. The Foreign Editions in 


English-, four American editions, two of 
Philadelphia, and two of New York; the 
Tauchnitz (German) and Baudry (French) ; 
the curious Calcutta edition ; with one of the 
most interesting editions, viz., the one pub- 
lished at Launceston in Van Diemen's Land 
in the year 1839, that is before the name of the 
Colony was changed. The publisher speaks 
feelingly of the enormous difficulties he had to 
encounter, and he boasts, with a certain pride, 
that it is " the largest publication that has 
issued from either the New South Wales or 
the Tasmanian Press." Not only this, but the 
whole of the work, printing, engraving, and 
binding, was executed in the Colony. He 
had to be content with lithography for the 
plates, and indeed, could only manage a 
selection of twenty of the best. He says, 
too, that even in England, lithography is 
found a process of considerable difficulty. 
They are executed in a very rough and 
imperfect way, and not very faithfully by an 
artist who signs himself "Tiz." The poor, 


but spirited publisher adds that the expense 
has been enormous " greater than was 
originally contemplated," but he comforts 
himself with the compliment that " if any 
publication would repay the cost of its 
production, it would be the far-famed 
Pickwick Papers." On the whole, it is a 
very interesting edition to have, and I have 
never seen a copy save the one I possess. 
I have also an American edition, printed in 
Philadelphia, which has a great interest. It 
was bought there by Mrs. Charles Dickens, 
and presented by her to her faithful maid, 
Anne. I possess also a copy of the Christ- 
mas Carol given by his son, the author, to 
his father John. Few recall that " Boz " 
wrote a sequel to his Pickwick a rather 
dismal failure quite devoid of humour. He 
revived Sam and old Weller, and Mr. Pick- 
wick, but they are unrecognizable figures. 
He judiciously suppressed this attempt, after 
making it a sort of introduction to Hum- 
phrey's Clock. Of course, we have it here. 


Translations-. Of these there are some 
twenty in all, but I have only the French, 
German, Russian, Dutch, Norwegian, 
Swedish, Hungarian. 

Then come Selections : " Readings " from 
" Pickwick " ; " Dialogues " from ditto ; 
" Weilerisms," by Charles Kent and Mr. 

Dramatic Versions: "The Pickwickians," 
11 Perambulations," " Sam Weller," etc. The 
" Pickwick " opera, by Burnand ; " The 
Trial in 'Pickwick'"; "Bardellz>. Pick- 
wick." There are " Play Bills "various. 
Connected with this department is the 
literature of the " Readings" " Charles 
Dickens as a Reader," by Kent, and " Pen 
Photographs," by Kate Field. Also Dolby's 
account of the Reading Tours, and the little 
prepared versions for sale in the rooms in 
green covers; also bills, tickets, and pro- 
grammes galore. 

In Music we have "The Ivy Green" and 
" A Christmas Carol." 


Imitations : " Pickwick Abroad," by G. 
W. Reynolds; "Pickwick in America,' 
the "Penny Pickwick," the " Queerfish 
Chronicles," the " Cadger Club," and many 

In the way of Commentaries : The " History 
of Pickwick," " Origin of Sam Weller" : Sir 
F. Lockwood's "The Law and Lawyers of 
Pickwick"; Kent's " Humour and Pathos of 
Charles Dickens"; accounts from Forster's 
"Life" and from the "Letters," " Con- 
troversy with Seymour" (Mrs. Seymour's rare 
pamphlet is not procurable), " Dickensiana," 
by F. Kitton ;" Bibliographies " by Herne 
Shepherd, Cook and also by Kitton. 

Criticisms : The Quarterly Review, the 
Westminster Review, Fraser^s Magazine, 
Taine's estimate, " L'inimitable Boz " by 
Comte de Heussey, with many more. 

Topographical-. Hughes' "Tramp in 
Dickens-Land," " In Kent with Charles 
Dickens," by Frost; " Bozland," by Percy 
Fitzgerald ; " The Childhood and Youth of 


C. Dickens," by Langton ; " Dickens's 
London," by Allbutt ; " About England with 
Dickens," by Rimmer; Papers in American 
and English Magazines ; " A Pickwickian 
Pilgrimage," by Hassard ; " Old Rochester," 
and others. 

Commentaries on the Illustrations-. Here 
is a regular department Account of " Phiz," 
by Kitton ; " Life of Hablot K. Browne," 
by Croal Thomson; "Life of G. Cruik- 
shank," Mr. Dexter's book, and another by 
Charles P. Johnson. 

Next we refer to the Illustrations them- 
selves : The plates to the original edition are 
by Seymour (7), Buss (2), Phiz-Seymour 
(7), and by "Phiz" (35). Variations, 
by " Phiz " ; variations, coloured by Pail- 
thorpe ; facsimiles of original drawings 
altogether about 200. There are Extra Plates 
by Heath, Sir John Gilbert, Onwhyn (" Sam 
Weller"), Sibson, Alfred Crowquill, Antony 
(American), Onwhyn (Posthumous) and 
Frost, Frederick Barnard (to popular 


edition) ; also some folio plates; C. J. Leslie 
(a frontispiece). "Phiz" published later a 
series of six, and also a large number of 
coarse wood-cuts to illustrate a cheap edition. 

There are also a series of clever extra 
illustrations by Pailthorpe and others, 
coloured by the same. We have seen F. 
Barnard's illustrations coloured by Pail- 
thorpe. There are here also the original 
plates re-drawn in Calcutta. They were 
also reproduced in Philadelphia, with 
additional ones by Nast. Others were issued 
in Sydney. There are a number of German 
woodcut illustrations to illustrate the 
German translations; some rude woodcuts 
to illustrate Dicks' edition : ditto to Penny 
edition. There is also a set of portraits from 
" Pickwick " in Bell's Life, probably by 
Kenny Meadows; and coloured figures by 
" Kyd." 

There are many pictures in colours 
Pickwick, Weller, &c. to illustrate Christ- 
mas calendars, chiefly " made in Germany." 


The most curious tribute is the issue by the 
Phonographic Society of " Pickwick " in 
shorthand; and, finally, "Pickwick" in raised 
characters on the Braille system for the 

This odd publication of " Pickwick " for the 
Blind came about in a quaint way enough. 
As we know, the author issued at his own 
expense one of his works in raised characters, 
as a present to these afflicted persons. A rich 
old gentleman had noticed a blind beggar 
seated with the Bible open on his knees, 
droning out the passages in the usual fashion. 
Some of the impostor sort learn the lines by 
heart and "make believe" to read, as they 
pass their fingers over the characters. The 
rich old gentleman's blind reader read in the 
genuine way, and got through about fifty 
chapters a day. No one, however, is much 
improved by the lecture. They merely wonder 
at the phenomenon and go their way. The 
rich old gentleman presently spoke to the 
blind reader : " Why don't you read * Pick- 


wick ' or some other book that the public will 
listen to ? " " Sir," he replied he must have 
been of the stock of Silas Wegg "give me 
* Pickwick ' in raised characters and I will 
read it." 

The rich old gentleman went his way and 
inquired at the proper places, but the work 
was not known. He gave an order for a 
hundred copies of "Pickwick" in "Wait's 
Improved Braille Type," and in about six 
months it was delivered to him not the whole 
work, but a selection of the more effective 
episodes. The blind reader was pleased ; 
the old gentleman insisted on a private 
rehearsal ; select passages were chosen which 
were calculated to take about twenty minutes 
each. When he arrived on the morning fixed 
for the first attempt, he found his friend at 
his post with quite a crowd gathered round 
him, in convulsions of laughter. The " poor 
blind " was reading, or feeling out, old Mr. 
Weller's ejectment of the red-nosed man. 
The hat was overflowing with coppers and 


even silver. So things went on prospering 
for a while. " Pickwick" was a magnificent 
success, and the blind man was never with- 
out a crowd round him of some fifteen to 
fifty persons. But the other blind readers 
found the demand for the sacred text vanish- 
ing ; and people would unfeelingly interrupt 
them to inquire the way to the " Pickwick 
man." Eventually the police began to 
interfere, and required him to "move on;" 
"he was obstructing the pavement" not, 
perhaps, he, but " Pickwick." He did move 
on to Hyde Park, but there were others there, 
performers young and up-to-date, and with 
full use of their eyes, who did the same thing 
with action and elocution. So he fairly gave 
the thing up, and returned to his Scriptures. 
This tale would have amused " Boz " himself. 
Of a more miscellaneous kind are 
"The Pickwick Songster," "Sam Weller's 
Almanac," "Sam Weller's Song Book," 
" The Pickwick Pen," " Oh, what a boon and 
a blessing to men," etc., to say nothing of 


innumerable careless sheets, and trifles of all 
kinds and of every degree. Then we have 
adapted advertisements. The Proprietors 
of Beecham's Pills use the scene of Mr. 
Pickwick's discovery of the Bill Stumps in- 
scription. Some carpet cleaners have Sam 
and the pretty housemaid folding the carpet. 
Lastly comes the author, " Boz " himself, with 
letters, portraits, pictures of his homes, etc., 
all more or less connected with the period 
when he was writing this book, a facsimile of 
his receipt for copy money, a copy of his 
agreement with Chapman and Hall, and 
many more items. 

I have often wondered how it was that 
" the inimitable Boz," took so little interest 
in his great Book. It always seemed to me 

NOTE. We have even in London the regular Pickwickian 
publisher, whose work is stimulated by a generous ardour and 
prepared knowledge of "States," Curios of all kinds 
associated with Boz in general, and Pickwick in particular. 
Among these is Mr. Spencer, of High Holborn "who will 
get you up a Pickwick" with all the advertisements, wrappers, 
etc., within a reasonable period and who will point out to you 
some mysterious error in the paging, which has escaped 
previous commentators. There is also Mr. Robson, of 
Coventr Street, and Mr. Harvey, of St. James' Street 


that he did not care for praise of it, or wish 
much that it should be alluded to. But he at 
once became interested, when you spoke 
of some of his artful plots, in Bleak 
House, or Little Dorrit then his eye kindled. 
He may have fancied, as his friend Forster 
also did, that Pickwick was a rather jejune 
juvenile thing, inartistically planned, and 
thrown off, or rather rattled off. His 
penchant, as was the case with Liston and 
some of the low comedians, was for harrow- 
ing tragedy and pathos. 

Once when driving with him on a jaunting 
car in Dublin, he asked me, did I know so- 
and-so, and I answered promptly in Mr. 
Winkle's words, " I don't know him, but 
I have seen him." This apropos made him 
laugh heartily. I am now inclined to think 
that the real explanation of his distaste was, 
that the Book was associated with one of the 
most painful and distracting episodes of his 
life, which affected him so acutely, that he 
actually flung aside his work in the full 


tumult of success, and left the eager 
public without its regular monthly number. 
" I have been so unnerved " he writes, in an 
unpublished letter to Harrison Ainsworth, 
"and hurt by the loss of the dear girl whom I 
loved, after my wife, more dearly and fervently 
than anyone on earth, that I have been com- 
pelled for once to give up all idea of my 
monthly work, and to try a fortnight's rest 
and quiet." 

In this long book, there are found allusions 
to only two or three other works. What 
these are might form one of the questions 
"set" at the next Pickwick examination. 
Fielding is quoted once. In the dedica- 
tion allusion is made to Talfourd's three 
speeches in Parliament, on the copyright 
question ; these were published in a little 
volume, and make, fairly enough, one 
of the illustrative documents of " Pickwick." 
In the first number of the first edition there 
is an odd note, rather out of place, but it was 
withdrawn later meant to ridicule Mr. 


Jingle's story of " Ponto's " sagacity ; it 
states that in Mr. Jesse's gleanings, there are 
more amazing stories than this. 

Mr. Jesse was a sort of personage living at 
Richmond where I well remember him, 
when I was there as a boy. " Jesse's glean- 
ings" was then a well-known and popular 
book ; and his stones of dogs are certainly 
extraordinary enough to have invoked Boz's 
ridicule. We are told of the French poodle, 
who after rolling himself in the mud of the 
Seine, would rub himself against any well- 
polished boots that he noticed, and would 
thus bring custom to his master, who 
was a shoe black on the Pont Neuf. 
He was taken to London by an English 
purchaser, but in a few days disappeared, and 
was discovered pursuing his old trade on the 
Bridge. Other dogs, we were told, after being 
transported long distances, would invariably 
find their way back. These prodigies, how- 
ever, do not appear so wonderful now, after 
the strange things about dogs and cats that 


have been retailed in a well-known " weekly." 
A third allusion is to Sterne's Maria of 
Moulines, made, of all people in the world, by 
Sam Weller 


It may seem somewhat far-fetched to put 
" Pickwick " beside Boswell's also immortal 
work, but I think really the comparison is 
not a fanciful one. No one enjoyed the book 
so much as "Boz." He knew it thoroughly. 
Indeed, it is fitting that "Boz" should relish 
" Bozzy;" for " Bozzy " would certainly have 
relished "Boz" and have "attended him 
with respectful attention." It has not been 
yet shown how much there is in common 
between the two great books, and, indeed, 
between them and a third, greater than 
either, the immortal " Don Quixote." All 
three are " travelling stories." Sterne also 
was partial to a travelling story. Lately, 
when a guest at the "Johnson Club," I 
ventured to expound minutely, and at length, 
this curious similarity between Boswell and 
Dickens. Dickens' appreciation of "Bozzy" 


is proved by his admirable parody which is 
found in one of his letters to Wilkie Collins, 
and which is superior to anything of the 
sort to Chalmers', Waloot's, or any that 
have been attempted : 

" Sir," as Dr. Johnson would have said, " if 
it be not irrational in a man to count his 
feathered bipeds before they are hatched, we 
will conjointly astonish them next year." BoswelL 
"Sir, I hardly understand you." Johnson. "You 
never understood anything." Boswell (in a 
sprightly manner). " Perhaps, sir, I am all the 
better for it." Johnson. " I do not know but 
that you are. There is Lord Carlisle (smiling) 
he never understands anything, and yet the dog 
is well enough. Then, sir, there is Forster 
he understands many things, and yet the fellow 
is fretful. Again, sir, there is Dickens, with a 
facile way with him like Davy, sir, like Davy- 
yet I am told that the man is lying at a hedge 
alehouse by the seashore in Kent as long as they 
will trust him." Boswell. " But there are no 
hedges by the sea in Kent, sir." Johnson. "And 
why not, sir? " Boswell (at a loss). "I don't 


know, sir, unless " Johnson (thundering). 

" Let us have no unlesses, sir. If your father 
had never said unless he would never have 
begotten you, sir." Boswell (yielding). " Sir, 
that is very true." 

To begin, the Christian names of the two 
great men were the same. Sam Johnson 
and Samuel Pickwick. Johnson had a 
relation called Nathaniel, and Pickwick had 
a "follower" also Nathaniel. Both the 
great men founded Clubs : Johnson's was in 
Essex Street, Strand, to say nothing of the 
Literary or Johnson Club ; the other in 
Huggin Lane. Johnson had his Goldsmith, 
Reynolds, Boswell, Burke, and the rest, as his 
members and " followers :" Mr. Pickwick had 
his Tupman, Snodgrass, Winkle, and others. 
These were the "travelling members," just as 
Dr. Johnson and Boswell were the travel- 
ling members of their Club. Boswell was 
the notetaker, so was Snodgrass. When we 
see the pair staying at the Three Crowns at 
Lichfield calling on friends waited on by 


the manager of the local Theatre, etc., we are 
forcibly reminded of the visits to Rochester 
and Ipswich. 

Boswell one night dropped into a tavern 
in Butcher Row, and saw his great friend in 
a warm discussion with a strange Irishman, 
who was very short with him, and the sketch 
recalls very forcibly Mr. Pickwick at the 
Magpie and Stump, where old Jack Bamber 
told him that he knew nothing about the 
mysteries of the old haunted chambers in 
Clifford's Inn and such places. The Turk's 
Head, the Crown and Anchor, the Cheshire 
Cheese, The Mitre, may be set beside the 
Magpie and Stump, the George and Vulture, 
and White Horse Cellars. 

More curious still in Boswell's life, there is 
mentioned a friend of Johnson's who is 
actually named Weller ! I leave it as a 
pleasant crux for the ingenious Pickwickian 
to find out where. 

Johnson had his faithful servant, Frank : 
Mr. Pickwick his Sam. The two sages 


equally revelled in travelling in post-chaises 
and staying at inns ; both made friends with 
people in the coaches and commercial rooms. 
There are also some odd accidental coinci- 
dences which help in the likeness. Johnson 
was constantly in the Borough, and we have 
a good scene with Mr. Pickwick at the White 
Hart in the same place. Mr. Pickwick had 
his widow, Mrs. Bardell; and Johnson his in 
the person of the fair Thrale. Johnson had his 
friend Taylor at Ashbourne, to whom he 
often went on visits, always going down by 
coach ; while Mr. Pickwick had his friend 
Wardle, with whom he stayed at Manor 
Farm, in Kent. We know of the review at 
Rochester which Mr. Pickwick and friends 
attended, and how they were charged by 
the soldiery. Oddly enough Dr. Johnson 
attended a review also at Rochester, when 
he was on a visit to his friend Captain 
Langton. Johnson, again, found his way to 
Bath, went to the Assembly Rooms, etc. ; 
and our friend Mr. Pickwick, we need not say, 


also enjoyed himself there. In Boswell's 
record we have a character called Mudge, an 
" out of the way " name ; and in Pickwick 
we find a Mudge. George Steevens, who 
figures so much in Boswell's work, was the 
author of an antiquarian hoax played off on 
a learned brother, of the same class as " Bill 
Stumps, his mark." He had an old inscription 
engraved on an unused bit of pewter it was 
well begrimed and well battered, then 
exposed for sale in a broker's shop, where it 
was greedily purchased by the credulous 
virtuoso. The notion, by the way, of the 
Club button was taken from the Prince 
Regent, who had his Club and uniform, 
which he allowed favourites to wear. 

There is a story in Boswell's Biography 
which is transferred to " Pickwick," that 
of the unlucky gentleman who died from a 
surfeit of crumpets ; Sam, it will be re- 
collected, describes it as a case of the man 
" as killed hisself on principle." 

" He used to go away to a coffee-house after 


his dinner and have a small pot o' coffee and four 
crumpets. He fell ill and sent for the doctor. 
Doctor comes in a green fly vith a kind o' 
Robinson Crusoe set o' steps as he could let 
down ven he got out, and pull up arter him ven 
he got in, to perwent the necessity o' the coach- 
man's gettin' down, and thereby undeceivin' the 
public by lettin' 'em see that it wos only a livery 
coat he'd got on, and not the trousers to match. 
c How many crumpets at a sittin* do you think 
'ud kill me off at once ? ' said the patient. * I 
don't know,' says the doctor. * Do you think 
half a crown's vurth 'ud do it ? ' says the patient. 
' I think it might,' says the doctor. * Three 
shillin' 's vurth 'ud be sure to do it, I s'pose ? ' 
says the patient. * Certainly,' says the doctor. 
'Wery good,' says the patient; 'good-night.' 
Next mornin' he gets up, has a fire lit, orders in 
three shillin's' vurth o' crumpets, toasts 'em all, 
eat 'em all, and blows his brains out." 

" What did he do that for ? " inquired Mr. 
Pickwick abruptly ; for he was considerably 
startled by this tragical termination of the 


" Wot did he do it for, sir ? " reiterated Sam. 
" Wy, in support of his great principle that 
crumpets was wholesome, and to show that he 
vouldn't be put out of his vay for nobody ! " 

Thus Dickens marvellously enriched this 
quaint story. It may be found amusing to 
trace the genesis of the tale. In Boswell it 
runs : " Mr. Fitzherbert, who loved buttered 
muffins, but durst not eat them because they 
disagreed with his stomach, resolved to 
shoot himself, and then eat three buttered 
muffins for breakfast, knowing that he should 
not be troubled with indigestion." We find 
that De Quincey, in one of his essays, reports 
the case of an officer holding the rank of 
lieutenant-colonel who could not tolerate a 
breakfast without muffins. But he suffered 
agonies of indigestion. " He would stand 
the nuisance no longer, but yet, being a just 
man, he would give Nature one final chance 
of reforming her dyspeptic atrocities. Muffins 
therefore being laid at one angle of the table 
and pistols at the other, with rigid equity the 


Colonel awaited the result. This was 
naturally pretty much as usual ; and then 
the poor man, incapable of retreating from 
his word of honour, committed suicide, 
having left a line for posterity to the effect, 
" that a muffinless world was no world for 

It will be recollected that, during the 
Christmas festivities at Manor Farm, after a 
certain amount of kissing had taken place 
under the mistletoe, Mr. Pickwick was 
" standing under the mistletoe, looking with 
a very pleased countenance on all that was 
passing round him, when the young lady 
with the black eyes, after a little whispering 
with the other young ladies, made a 
sudden dart forward, and putting her arm 
round Mr. Pickwick's neck, saluted him 
affectionately on the left cheek, and before he 
distinctly knew what was the matter he was 
surrounded by the whole bevy, and kissed by 
every one of them." Compare with this 


what happened to Dr. Johnson in the 
Hebrides : 

"This evening one of our married ladies, a 
lively, pretty little woman, good-humouredly sat 
down upon Dr. Johnson's knee, and being en- 
couraged by some of the company, put her 
hands round his neck and kissed him. " Do it 
again," said he, "and let us see who will tire 
first." He kept her on his knee some time while 
he and she drank tea. He was now like a buck 
indeed. All the company were much entertained 
to find him so easy and pleasant. To me it was 
highly comic to see the grave philosopher the 
Rambler toying with a Highland beauty ! 
But what could he do? He must have been 
surly, and weak too, had he not behaved as he 
did. He would have been laughed at, and not 
more respected, though less loved." 

Was not this Mr. Pickwick exactly ? 

Or, we might fancy this little scene taking 
place at Dunvegan Castle, on the night of 
the dance, when Johnson was in such high 
good-humour. His faithful henchman might 


have come up to him and have said jocosely, 
" You, sir, in silk stockings ? " 

" And why not, sir_why not ? " said the 
Doctor warmly. " Oh, of course," I answered, 
"there is no reason why you should not wear 
them." " I imagine not, sir I imagine not," 
said the Doctor in a very peremptory tone. I 
had contemplated a laugh, but found it was a 
serious matter. I looked grave, and said they 
were a pretty pattern. " I hope they are," said 
Dr. Johnson, fixing his eyes upon me. " You 
see nothing extraordinary in these stockings as 
stockings, I trust, sir ? " " Certainly not ; oh, 
certainly not," I replied, and my revered friend's 
countenance assumed its customary benign 

Now, is not this Pickwickian all over? 
Yet it is the exact record of what occurred at 
Manor Farm, in " Pickwick," with a change 
only in the names, and would pass very 
fairly as an amiable outburst of the redoubt- 
able Doctor's. 

Or, again, let us put a bit of " Boz " into 


"Bozzy's" work. The amiable "Goldy" was 
partial to extravagant dress, and to showing 
himself off. 

When a masquerade at Ranelagh was talked 
of, he said to Doctor Johnson, " I shall go as a 
Corsican." " What ! " said the Doctor, with a 
sudden start. "As a Corsican," Dr. Goldsmith 
repeated mildly. "You don't mean to say," said 
the Doctor to him, gazing at him with solemn 
sternness, "that it is your intention to put your- 
self into a green velvet jacket with a two-inch 
tail ? " " Such is my intention, sir," replied 
Goldsmith warmly; "and why not, sir?" 
" Because, sir," said the Doctor, considerably 
excited, "you are too old." "Too old!" 
exclaimed Goldsmith. "And if any further 
ground of objection be wanting," said Dr. 
Johnson, "You are too fat, sir." "Sir," said 
Dr. Goldsmith, his face suffused with a crimson 
glow, " this is an insult." "Sir," said the sage 
in the same tone, "it is not half the insult to 
you, that your appearance in my presence in a 
green velvet jacket with two-inch tail would be 
to me." "Sir," said Dr. Goldsmith, "you're 


a fellow." Sir," said Dr. Johnson, "you're 

Winkle in a very amusing way often 
suggests Boswell; and Mr. Pickwick treats 
him with as great rudeness as did Johnson his 
Winkle. When that unhappy gentleman, or 
follower exhibited himself on the ice, Mr. Pick- 
wick, we are told, was excited and indignant. 
"He beckoned to Mr. Weller and said in a 
stern voice: Take the skates off." "No, but! 
had scarcely began," remonstrated Mr. 
Winkle. "Take his skates off," repeated Mr. 
Pickwick, firmly. The command was not to 
be resisted. " Lift him up," said Mr. 
Pickwick Sam assisted him to rise. Mr, 
Pickwick retired a few paces apart from the 
by-standers and beckoning his friend to 
approach, fixed a searching look on him and 
uttered in a low, but distinct and emphatic 
tone, these remarkable words : "You're a 
humbug, sir." "A what?" said Mr. Winkle, 
starting. " A humbug, sir, I will speak 
plainer if you wish it an impostor, sir." 


With these words Mr. Pickwick turned 
slowly on his heel and rejoined his friends. 
Was not! this exactly the Sage's treatment of 
his " Bozzy " on many occasions ? 

There is yet another odd coincidence. 
Everyone knows how Bob Sawyer's party was 
disturbed by Mrs. Raddle's angry expostu- 
lations, and the guests had to disperse. Well, 
Mr. Boswell, who had much of the Sawyer 
tone gave a party at his rooms in 
Downing Street, and his landlord behaved 
so outrageously, that he gave him notice, 
and the next day quitted his rooms. " I 
feel I shall have to give my landlady notice," 
said Mr. Sawyer with a ghastly smile. Mr. 
Boswell had actually to take some of the 
invited guests to the Mitre and entertain 
them there. 

There is a pleasant passage connected with 
Dr. Johnson's visit to Plymouth, with his old 
friend Sir Joshua. He was much pleased 
with this jaunt and declared he had derived 
from it a great accession of new ideas, , 


" The magnificence of the Navy the ship 
building and all its circumstances afforded 
him a grand subject of contemplation." He 
contemplated it in fact, as Mr. Pickwick 
contemplated Chatham and the Medway. 
The commissioner of the dockyard paid him 
the compliment, etc. The characteristic 
part, however, was that the Doctor entered 
enthusiastically into the local politics. "There 
was a new town rising up round the dockyard, 
as a rival to the old one, and knowing from 
the sagacity and just observation of human 
nature, that it is certain if a man hates at all, 
he will hate his next neighbour, he concluded 
that this new and rising town could but excite 
the envy and jealousy of the old. He there- 
fore set himself resolutely on the side of the 
old town, the established town in which he 
was. Considering it a kind of duty to stand by 
it. He accordingly entered warmly into its 
interests, and upon every occasion talked of 
the Dockers as "upstarts and aliens." As 
they wanted to be supplied with water from 


the old town, not having a drop themselves, 
Johnson affecting to entertain the passions 
of the place, was violent in opposition ; and 
half laughing at himself for his pretended 
zeal, and where he had no concern, ex- 
claimed : " No ! I am against the Dockers ; I 
am a Plymouth man. Rogues ! let them die 
of thirst; they shall not have a drop. I 
hate a Docker ! " 

Now all this is very like what the amiable 
Pickwick would have done; in fact like 
something he did do and felt, when he 
repaired to Eatanswill for the election. On 
entering the town he at once chose his 
party, and took it up enthusiastically. 
" With his usual foresight and sagacity," 
like Dr. Johnson, he had chosen a fortu- 
nately desirable moment for his visit. 
" Slumkey for ever," roared the honest and 
independent. " Slumkey for ever ! " echoed 
Mr. Pickwick, taking off his hat. " No 
Fizkin," roared the crowd. " Certainly 
not," shouted Mr. Pickwick. "Who is 


Slumkey ? " whispered Mr. Tupman. " I 
don't know," said Mr. Pickwick, in the same 
tone. " Hush ! don't ask any questions. 
It's always best on these occasions to do 
what the mob do." " But suppose there are 
two mobs," suggested Mr. Snodgrass. 
" Shout with the largest," replied Mr. Pick- 
wick. Volumes could not have said more. 
On asking for rooms at the Town Arms, 
which was the Great White Horse, Mr. 
Pickwick was asked "was he Blue." Mr. 
Pickwick in reply, asked for Perker. "He is 
blue I think." " O yes, sir." " Then we are 
blue," said Mr. Pickwick, but observing the 
man looked rather doubtful at this accommo- 
dating account he gave him his card. Perker 
arranged everything. " Spirited contest, 
my dear sir," he said, " I am delighted to 
hear it," said Mr. Pickwick. " I like to see 
sturdy patriotism, on whatever side it is 
called forth." Later, we are told, Mr. 
Pickwick entered heart and soul into the 
business, and, like the sage, caught the 


prevailing excitement. " Although no great 
partisan of either side, Mr. Pickwick was 
sufficiently fired by Mr. Pott's enthusiasm to 
apply his whole time and attention to the 
proceedings, etc." All this, of course, does 
not correspond exactly, but the spirit of the 
selections are the same. 

The Doctor it is known, would go out at 
midnight with his friends Beauclerk and 
Layton to have what he called "a rouze," 
and Garrick was humorously apprehensive 
that he would have to bail out his old friend 
from the watchhouse. Mr. Pickwick had 
many a " rouze " with his followers. And 
Johnson himself, in the matter of drink, was 
at one time as bad as Mr. Pickwick, only he 
had a better head, and could "carry his liquor 
discreetly," like the Baron of Bradwardine. 
He had actually to give up drink on account 
of this tendency to excess. 


There is a shrewd remark of the late Bishop 
Norwich, Dean Stanley's father, that to catch 
and describe the tone and feeling of a place 
gives a better idea of it than any minute or 
accurate description. " Some books," he says, 
"give one ideas of places without descriptions ; 
there is something which suggests more vivid 
and agreeable images than distinct words. 
Would Gil Bias for instance ? It opens with a 
scene of history, chivalry, Spain, orange trees, 
fountains, guitars, muleteers ; there is the 
picturesque and the sense of the picturesque, as 
distinct as the actual object." Now this exactly 
applies to " Pickwick," which brings up before 
us Rochester, Ipswich, Muggleton, Birmingham, 
and a dozen other places to the tourist. The 
night of the arrival at Birmingham for 
instance, and the going out after dinner to 
call on Mr. Winkle, sen,, is strangely vivid. 

Face p. 71 


So real is our Pickwickian Odyssey that it 
can be followed in all its stages as in a diary. 
To put it all in " ship shape " as it were and 
enhance this practical feeling I have drawn 
out the route in a little map. It is wonderful 
how much the party saw and how much 
ground they covered, and it is not a far- 
fetched idea that were a similar party in our 
day, good humoured, venturesome and ac- 
cessible, to visit old-fashioned, out of the way 
towns, and look out for fun, acquaintances and 
characters, they might have a good deal of 
the amusement and adventure that the Pick- 
wickians enjoyed. 

The Pickwickians first went to Rochester, 
Chatham, Dingley Dell, and perhaps to 
Gravesend. Mr. Pickwick with Wardle then 
pursued Jingle to town, returning thence to 
the Dell, which he at once left for Cobham, 
where he found his friend Tupman. The 
party then returned to town. Next we have 
the first visit to Ipswich called Eatanswill 
from which town Mr. Pickwick and Sam 


posted to Bury St. Edmunds ; thence to 
London. Next came their third expedition 
to Dingley Dell for the Christmas festivities. 
Then the second visit to Ipswich. Then 
the journey to Bath, and that from Bath 
to Bristol. Later a second journey to Bristol 
another from Bristol to Birmingham, and 
from Birmingham to London, Mr. Pickwick's 
final junketing before retiring to Dulwich. 

Yet another interesting side of the Pickwick 
story is its almost biographical character. Boz 
seems to take us with him from his very boy- 
hood. During the old days when his father was 
at Chatham he had seen all the Rochester inci- 
dents, sat by the old Castle and Bridge, noted 
with admiring awe the dockyard people, 
the Balls at "The Bull," the Reviews on the 
Lines. The officers like Dr. Slammer, all the 
figures fat boy included were drawn from 
this stage of his life. The Golden Cross, 
which figures also in Copperfield, he had 
constantly stopped at. He knew, too, the 
inns in the Boro'. The large legal element 


and its odd incidents and characters he had 
learned and studied during his brief appren- 
ticeship to the Law. The interior economy 
of the Fleet Prison he had learned from his 
family's disastrous experiences ; the turnkeys, 
and blighted inhabitants he had certainly 
taken from life. But he shifted the scene from 
the Marshalsea to the King's Bench Prison 
the former place would have been too painful 
a reminiscence for his father. To his reporting 
expeditions we owe the Election scenes at 
Ipswich, and to another visit for the same 
object, his Bath experiences. Much of the 
vividness and reality of his touchings, particu- 
larly in the case of Rochester and its doings, 
is the magnifying, searching power resulting 
from a life of sorrow in childhood, family 
troubles working on a keen, sensitive nature ; 
these made him appreciate and meditate on 
all that was going on about him, as a sort of 
relief and relaxation. All the London scenes 
the meetings at taverns were personal 
experiences. Among his friends were medical 


students and many odd beings. We can trace 
his extraordinary appreciation of Christmas 
and its genial, softening festivities which 
clung to him till it altogether faded out, to 
the same sense of relief; it furnished an 
opportunity of forgetting for a time (at least), 
the dismal, gloomy home. 

Boz, if he drew his characters from 
life, did not draw wholesale; he would take 
only a portion of a character that pleased him 
and work it up in combination with another 
distinct character. It was thus he dealt with 
Leigh Hunt, borrowing his amusing, airy 
frivolity, and combining it with the meanness 
and heartlessness of Skimpole. I have always 
fancied that Dowler in " Pickwick " was 
founded after this composite principle on 
his true-hearted but imperious friend, 
Forster. Forster was indeed also a perfect 
reproduction of Dr. Johnson and had the 
despotic intolerance in conversation certainly 
of that great man. Like him " if his pistol 
missed fire, he knocked you down with the 


butt end of it" He could be as amiable and 
tender-hearted as "old Sam" himself. Listen- 
ing to Dowler at the coach office in Piccadilly 
we who knew Forster well seemed to hear 
his very voice. "It was a stern -eyed man of 
about five-and-forty, who had large black 
whiskers. He was buttoned up to the chin 
in a brown coat and had a large seal-skin cap 
and a cloak beside him. He looked up 
from his breakfast as Mr. Pickwick entered 
with a fierce and peremptory air, which was 
very dignified, and which seemed to say that 
he rather expected somebody wanted to take 
advantage of him, but it wouldn't do" . . 
" Are you going to Bath ? " said the strange 
man. " I am, sir," replied Mr. Pickwick. 
" And these other gentleman ? " " They are 
going also," said Mr. Pickwick. " Not inside 
I'll be damned if you're going inside," said 
the strange man. " Not all of us," said Mr. 
Pickwick. " No not all of you," said the 
strange man, emphatically. "We take two 
places. If they try and squeeze six people 


into an infernal box that only holds four, I'll 
take a post-chaise and bring an action. It 
won't do," etc. This recalls the pleasant 
story about Forster and the cabman who 
summoned him. The latter was adjudged to be 
in the wrong and said he knew it, but " that 
he was determined to show him up, he were 
such a harbitrary cove." None enjoyed this 
story more than Forster himself, and I have 
heard him say to a lady humorously, " Now 
you must. You know I am ' such a harbitrary 
cove.' " Dear good old Forster ! 

I must confess all Pickwickians would like to 
know biographical details, as one might call 
them, about the personages engaged in the 
trial. I need not repeat that Judge Stareleigh 
was drawn from Mr. Justice Gazalee, or that 
Buzfuz was founded on Mr. Serjeant Bompas, 
or Bumpus. Charles Carpenter Bompas was 
his full designation. He was made a 
Serjeant in 1827, the very year of the 
memorable trial. He obtained a Patent of 
Precedence in 1834. " Buzfuz's son " Mr. 


W. Bompas, Q.C., who will pardon the 
freedom of the designation was born in the 
year of the celebrated trial. He was the 
youngest son and had a very distinguished 
career both at College and at the Bar, being 
a " leader " on his circuit, revising barrister, 
bencher, recorder, and was last year appointed 
a County Court judge. 

Who were Serjeant Snubbin, Skimpin, and 
Phunkey ? No traditions have come to us 
as to these gentlemen. Skimpin may have 
been Wilkins, and Snubbin a Serjeant 
Arabin, a contemporary of Buzfuz. But we 
are altogether in the dark. 

We should have liked also to have some 
" prehistoric peeps " at the previous biography 
of Mr. Pickwick before the story began. We 
have but a couple of indications of his calling: 
the allusion by Perker at the close of the 
story " The agent at Liverpool said he had 
been obliged to you many times when you 
were in business." He was therefore a 
merchant or in trade. Snubbin at the trial 


stated that " Mr. Pickwick had retired from 
business and was a gentleman of considerable 
independent property." 

In the original announcement of the 
" Pickwick Papers " there are some scraps of 
information about Mr. Pickwick and the Club 
itself. This curious little screed shows that 
the programme was much larger than the one 
carried out : 

"On the 3 1st of March, 1836, will be published, 

to be continued Monthly, price One 

Shilling, the First Number of 




containing a faithful record of the 


And each Monthly Part embellished with 

four illustrations by Seymour. 


" The Pickwick Club, so renowned in the annals 
of Huggin Lane, and so closely entwined with 
the thousand interesting associations connected 
with Lothbury and Cateaton Street^ was founded 
in the year one thousand eight hundred and 
twenty-two, by Samuel Pickwick the great 
traveller whose fondness for the useful arts 
prompted his celebrated journey to Birmingham 
in the depth of winter ; and whose taste for the 
beauties of nature even led him to penetrate to 
the very borders of Wales in the height of 

" This remarkable man would appear to have 
infused a considerable portion of his restless and 
inquiring spirit into the breasts of other members 
of the Club, and to have awakened in their minds 
the same insatiable thirst for travel which so 
eminently characterized his own. The whole 
surface of Middlesex, a part of Surrey, a portion 
of Essex, and several square miles of Kent were 
in their turns examined and reported on. In a 
rapid steamer they smoothly navigated the 
placid Thames ; and in an open boat they fear- 
lessly crossed the turbid Medway. High-roads 


and by-roads, towns and villages, public con- 
veyances and their passengers, first-rate inns 
and road-side public houses, races, fairs, regattas, 
elections, meetings, market days all the scenes 
that can possibly occur to enliven a country 
place, and at which different traits of character 
may be observed and recognized, were alike 
visited and beheld by the ardent Pickwick and 
his enthusiastic followers. 

"The Pickwick Travels, the Pickwick Diary, 
the Pickwick Correspondencein short, the 
whole of the Pickwick Papers were carefully 
preserved, and duly registered by the secretary, 
from time to time, in the voluminous Transac- 
tions of the Pickwick Club. These Transactions 
have been purchased from the patriotic secretary, 
at an immense expense, and placed in the hands 
of * Boz,' the author of " Sketches Illustrative 
of Every Day Life and Every Day People " a 
gentleman whom the publishers consider highly 
qualified for the task of arranging these important 
documents, and placing them before the public 
in an attractive form. He is at present deeply 


immersed in his arduous labours, the first fruits 
of which will appear on the 3ist March. 

" Seymour has devoted himself, heart and 
graver, to the task of illustrating the beauties of 
Pickwick. It was reserved to Gibbon to paint, 
in colours that will never fade, the Decline and 
Fall of the Roman Empire to Hume to chronicle 
the strife and turmoil of the two proud houses 
that divided England against herself to Napier 
to pen, in burning words, the History of the 
War in the Peninsula the deeds and actions of 
the gifted Pickwick yet remain for * Boz ' and 
Seymour to hand down to posterity. 

" From the present appearance of these 
important documents and the probable extent of 
the selections from them, it is presumed that the 
series will be completed in about twenty numbers." 
From this it will be seen that it was 
intended to exhibit all the humours of the 
social amusements with which the public re- 
galed itself. Mr. Pickwick and friends were 
to be shown on board a steamer ; at races, 
fairs, regattas, market days, meetings " at all 
the scenes that can possibly occur to enliven a 


country place, and at which different traits of 
character may be observed and recognized." 
This was a very scientific and well drawn 
scheme ; and it was, on the whole, most faith- 
fully and even brilliantly carried out. But 
with infinite art Boz emancipated himself from 
the formal hide-bound trammels of Syntax 
tours and the like, when it was reckoned that 
the hero and his friends would be exhibited 
like " Bob Logic " and " Tom and Jerry " in a 
regular series of public places. " Mr. Pick- 
wick has an Adventure at Vauxhall," "Mr. 
Pickwick Goes to Margate," etc. : we had a 
narrow escape, it would seem, of this con- 
ventional sort of thing, and no doubt it was 
this the publishers looked for. But "Boz" 
asserted his supremacy, and made the 
narrative the chief element. 

It was interesting thus to know that Mr. 
Pickwick had visited the borders of Wales 
I suppose, Chester but what was his 
celebrated journey to Birmingham, prompted 
by his " fondness for the useful arts " ? This 


could hardly refer to his visit to Mr. Winkle, 
sen. The Club, it will be seen, was founded 
in 1822, and its place of meeting would appear 
to have been this Huggin Lane, City, " so 
intimately associated with Lothbury and 
Cateaton Street." The picture of the meeting 
of the Club shows us that it consisted of the 
ominous number of thirteen. There is not 
room for more. They seem like a set of well- 
to-do retired tradesmen ; the faces are such 
as we should see on the stage in a piece of 
low comedy : for the one on the left Mr. Edward 
Terry might have sat. The secretary sits at 
the bottom of the table, with his back to us, 
and the chairman, with capacious stomach, at 
the top. Blotton, whom Mr. Pickwick rather 
unhandsomely described as a " vain and dis- 
appointed haberdasher," may have followed 
this business. He is an ill- looking fellow 
enough, with black, bushy whiskers. The 
Pickwickians are decidedly the most gentle- 
manly of the party. But why was it necessary 
for Mr. Pickwick to stand upon a chair ? 


This, however, may have been a custom of the 
day at free and easy meetings. 

" Posthumous papers" moreover, did not 
correctly describe the character of the 
Book, for the narrative did not profess to 
be founded on documents at all. He was, 
however, committed to this title by his 
early announcement, and indeed intended 
to carry out a device of using Snod- 
grass's " Note Books," whose duty it was 
during the course of the adventures to take 
down diligently all that he observed. But 
this cumbrous fiction was discarded after a 
couple of numbers. " Posthumous papers " 
had been used some ten years before, in 
another work. 

Almost every page save perhaps a dismal 
story or two in the 609 pages of Pickwick is 
good ; but there are two or three passages 
which are obscure, if not forced in humour. 
Witness Mr Bantam's recognition of Mr. 
Pickwick, as the gentleman residing on 
Clapham Green not yet Common "who 


lost the use of his limbs from imprudently 
taking cold after port wine, who could not be 
moved in consequence of acute suffering, and 
who had the water from the King's Bath 
bottled at 103 degrees, and sent by waggon 
to his bedroom in Town ; when he bathed, 
sneezed, and same day recovered." This is 
grotesque enough and farcical, but without 
much meaning. On another occasion we are 
told that Tupman was casting certain " Anti- 
Pickwickian glances" at the servant maids, 
which is unmeaning. No doubt, /#-Pick- 
wickian was intended. 

Why is there no " Pickwick Club " in 
London ? It might be worth trying, and 
would be more successful than even the 
Johnson Club. There is surely genuine 
" stuff" to work on. Our friends in America, 
who are Pickwickian quand meme> have 
established the "Ail-Around Dickens Club." 
The members seem to be ladies, though 
there are a number of honorary members 
of the other sex, which include members 


of " Boz's " own family, with Mr. Kitton, Mr. 
W. Hughes, Mr. Charles Kent, myself, and 
some more. The device of the club is " Boz's " 
own book-plate, and the " flower " of the ' club 
is his favourite geranium. The President is 
Mrs: Adelaide Garland ; and some very 
interesting papers, to judge from their titles, 
have been read, such as " Bath and its Associa- 
tions with Landor," " The City of Bristol with 
its Literary Associations," " The Excursion to 
the Tea Gardens of Hampstead," prefaced by 
a description of the historic old inn, " Poem 
by Charles Kent," " Dickens at Gad's Hill," 
"A Description of Birmingham, its Institu- 
tions, and Dickens' Interest therein " ; with a 
"Reading of Mr. Pickwick's Mission to 
Birmingham, Coventry and the adjacent 
Warwickshire Country," etc. There is also a 
very clever series of examination questions by 
the President in imitation of Calverley's. 

"Had Mr. Pickwick loved?" Mr. Lang 
asks ; " it is natural to believe that he had 
never proposed, never. His heart, however 


bruised, was neither broken nor embittered." 
His temperament was certainly affectionate 
if not absolutely amatory : he certainly never 
missed an opportunity where a kiss was 

But stay ! has anyone noted that on the 
wall of his room at Dulwich, there hangs the 
portrait of a lady just over this might seem 
to mean something. But on looking close, 
we see it is the dear filial old fellow's mother. 
A striking likeness, and she has spectacles 
like her celebrated son. 

As all papers connected with the Pickwick 
era are scarce and meagre for the reason 
that no one was then thinking of " Boz " ; any 
that have come down to us are specially 
interesting. Here are a few " pieces," which 
will be welcomed by all Pickwickians. The 
first is a letter of our author to his publishers. 

" Furnival's Inn, 

" Friday Morning. 

" DEAR SIR, I am very glad to find I shall 
have the pleasure of celebrating Mr. Pickwick's 


success with you on Sunday. When you have 
sufficiently recovered from the fatigues of 
publication, will you just let me know from your 
books how we stand. Drawing 10 one day, 
and 20 another, and so forth, I have become 
rather mystified, and jumbled up our accounts 
in my brain, in a very incomprehensible state. 

" Faithfully yours, 


This must have been written at the con- 
clusion of the story in 1837, and is in a very 
modest tone considering how triumphant had 
been the success. Connected with this is a 
paper of yet more interest, a receipt for 
payment for one of the early numbers. 

For this Pickwickian Banquet, he had 
reluctantly to give up one at the home of his 
new friend Forster. In an unpublished 
letter, he writes to him as " Dear Sir " the 
beginning of a four-and-thirty years' friend- 
ship " I have been so much engaged in the 
pleasing occupation of moving." He was 
unable to go to his new friend to dinner 

Face p. 83. 


because he had been " long engaged to the 
Pickwick publishers to a dinner in honour of 
that hero, which comes off to-morrow." 

In an interesting letter of Dickens' 
Pickwickian ones are rare sold at 
Hodgson's rooms, July, 1895, he writes : 
" Mr. Seymour shot himself before the 
second number of the Pickwick papers, not 
the third as you would have it, was published. 
While he lay dead, it was necessary the 
search should be made in his working room 
for the plates to the second number, the day 
for publication of which was drawing near. 
The plates were found unfinished, with their 
faces turned to the wall." This ' scrap 
brought 12 los. Apropos of prices, who 
that was present will forget the scene at 
Christie's when the six " Pickwick Ladles " 
were sold ? These were quaint things, like 
enlarged Apostle Spoons, and the figures well 
modelled. They had been made specially, 
and presented to " Boz " on the conclusion 
of his story, by his publishers. The Pickwick 


Ladle brought 69. Jingle, 30. Winkle, 
23. Sam, 64. Old Weller, 51 ; and the 
Fat Boy, 35 145., or over 280 in all. Nay, 
the leather case was put up, and brought 
three guineas. We recall Andrew Halliday 
displaying one to us, with a sort of triumph. 
Charles Dickens, the younger, got two, I 
think ; Messrs. Agnew the others. 


It is\ an interesting question what should 
be the relation of illustration to the story, and 
of the artist to the story-teller ; and what are 
the limitations of their respective provinces. 
Both should work independently of each 
other ; that is, the artist should tell the story 
from his own point of view he is not 
merely to servilely translate the situations 
into "black and white." He should be, in 
fact, what the actor is to a drama. When 
Eugene Delacroix's illustrations to Goethe's 
" Faust " were shown to the great author, 
he expressed admiration of their truth and 
spirit ; and on his secretary saying that they 
would lead to a better understanding of his 
poem, said : " With that we have naught to 
do ; on the contrary, the more complete 
imagination of such an artist compels us to 


believe that the situations as he represents 
them are preferable to them as described. It 
is therefore likely that the readers will find 
that he exerts a strong force upon their 
imagination." This shows, allowing some- 
thing for the compliment, what a distinct 
force the great writer attributed to the artist, 
that he did not consider him an assistant or 
merely subsidiary. The actor becomes, after 
his fashion, a distinct creator and originator, 
supplying details, etc., of his own, but taking 
care that these are consistent with the text 
and do not contradict it in any way. 

This large treatment was exactly " Phiz's." 
He seems to " act " " Boz's " drama, yet he 
did not introduce anything that was not 
warranted by the spirit of the text. He found 
himself present at the scene, and felt how it 
must have occurred. He had a wonderful 
power of selecting what was essential and 
what should be essential. Nor did he make 
a minute inventory of such details as were 
mentioned in the text. Hence the extra- 


ordinary vitality and spirit of his work. 
There is action in all, and each picture tells 
its own story. To see the merit of this 
system, we have only to contrast with it such 
attempts as we find in modern productions, 
where the artist's method is to present to us 
figures grouped together, apparently talking 
but not acting such things as we have week 
by week in Punch. The late Sir John Millais 
and other artists of almost equal rank used to 
furnish illustrations to serial stories, and all 
their pictures were of this kind two or 
three figures well drawn, certainly one 
standing, the others sitting down, it may be, 
engaged in conversation. This brought 
us " no forrarder " and supplied no dramatic 

It should be said, however, that it is only 
to " Pickwick " that this high praise can be 
extended. With every succeeding story the 
character of the work seemed to fall off, or 
rather the methods of the artist to change. 
It may have been, too, the inspiration from a 


dramatic spirited story also failed, for " Boz " 
had abandoned the free, almost reckless style 
of his first tale. There was a living distinct- 
ness, too, in the Pickwickian coterie^ and every 
figure, familiar and recognizable, seemed to 
have infinite possibilities. The very look of 
them would inspire. 

In this spirit of vitality and reality also, 
" Phiz " rather suggests a famous foreign illus- 
trator, Chodowiecki, who a century ago was 
in enormous request for the illustration of 
books of all kinds, and whose groups and 
figures, drawn with much spirit and round- 
ness, arrested the eye at once and told the 
situation. Later " Phiz " fell off in his work 
and indeed adopted quite new and more 
commercial methods, such as would enable 
him to get through the vast amount of work 
that came to him. There were no longer 
these telling situations to limn which spoke 
for themselves, and without straw, bricks are 
not to be made. In this later manner we 
seem to have bid adieu to the inspiration to 


the fine old round style of drawing where 
the figures " stand out " completely. He 
adopted a sort of sketchy fashion ; his figures 
became silhouettes and quite flat. There was 
also a singular carelessness in finish a mere 
outline served for a face. The result was a 
monotony and similarity of treatment, with a 
certain unreality and grotesqueness which are 
like nothing in life. In this, however, he may 
have been inspired by the grotesque person- 
ages he was put to illustrate the Smallweeds 
and the like. 

It would be an interesting speculation to 
consider what would have become of " Pick- 
wick" had this artist not been forthcoming. 
Would we have really known our Mr. 
Pickwick and his " followers " as we do now, 
or, indeed, would we have so keenly appre- 
ciated the humorous situations ? I believe 
not. It was the graven figures of these 
personages, and the brilliant way in which 
the situations were concentrated, as it were, 
into a point, that produced such striking 


effect: without these adjuncts the Head of 
the Club and his friends would have been 
more or less abstractions, very much what 
the characters in Theodore Hook's "Gilbert 
Gurney" are. Take Mr. Pickwick. The 
author supplied only a few hints as to his 
personal appearance he was bald, mild, pale, 
wore spectacles and gaiters ; but who would 
have imagined him as we have him now, with 
his high forehead, bland air, protuberant 
front. The same with the others. Mr. 
Thackeray tried in many ways to give some 
corporeal existence to his own characters to 
"Becky," Pendennis, and others; but who sees 
them as we do Mr. Pickwick? So with his 
various "situations" many most dramatic 
and effective, but no one would guess it from 
the etchings. The Pickwick scenes all tell 
a story of their own ; and a person say a 
foreigner who had never even heard of the 
story would certainly smile over the situa- 
tions, and be piqued into speculating what 
could be the ultimate meaning. 


At the exhibition "illustrating a century 
and a half of English humorists," given by 
the Fine Art Society under the direction of 
Mr. Joseph Grego in October, 1896, there 
was a collection of original Pickwick draw- 
ings no less than fifty-six in number. There 
were three by Seymour, two by Bass and 
thirty-four by Phiz, all used in the book ; 
while of those unused probably found un- 
suitable, there were five by Buss, including a 
proposed title-page, and two of the Fat Boy 
" awake on this occasion only." There were 
also five by Phiz, which were not engraved, 
and one by Leech. The drawing of the 
dying clown, Seymour was engaged upon when 
he committed suicide. Of Buss' there were 
two of Mr. Pickwick at the Review, two of 
the cricket match, two of the Fat Boy 
" awake," " the influence of the salmon " 
unused, " Mr. Winkle's first shot " unused, 
studies of character in Pickwick, and a study 
for the title-page. The poor, discarded Buss 
took a vast deal of pains therefore to accom- 


plish his task. Of Phiz's unused designs there 
was " Mr. Winkle's first shot " and tv/o for 
the Gabriel Grub story, also one for "the 
Warden's room." Most interesting of all was 
his " original study " for the figure of Mr. 

Mr. Grego, himself an excellent artist, 
placed at the door of the society a very telling 
figure of Mr. Pickwick displayed on a poster 
and effectively coloured. It was new to find 
our genial old friend smiling an invitation to 
us in Bond Street. This which I took for a 
lithographed " poster " was Mr. Grego's own 
work, portrayed in water colours. 

There have been many would-be illustrators 
of the chronicle, some on original lines of 
their own ; but these must be on the whole 
pronounced to be failures. On looking at 
them we somehow feel that the figures and 
situations are wholly strange to us ; that we 
don't know them or recognize them. The 
reason is possibly that the artists are not in 
perfect sympathy or intelligence with the 


story ; they do not know every turning, 
corner and cranny of it, as did " Phiz " and 
indeed as did everyone else living at that 
time; they were not inspired, above all, by its 
author. But there was a more serious reason 
still for the failure. It will be seen that in 
Phiz's wonderful plates the faces and figures 
are more or less generalized. We cannot tell 
exactly, for instance, what were Mr. Winkle's 
or even Sam Weller's features. Neither their 
mouths, eyes ,or noses, could be put in distinct 
shape. We have only the general air and 
tone and suggestion as of persons seen afar 
off in a crowd. Yet they are always recog- 
nizable. This is art, and it gave the artist 
a greater freedom in his treatment. Now 
when an illustrator like the late Frederick 
Barnard came, he drew his Jingle, his 
Pickwick, Weller, and Winkle, with all their 
features, in quite a literal and particular 
fashion the features were minutely and care- 
fully brought out, with the result that they 
seem almost strange to us. Nor do they express 


the characters. There is an expression, but it 
seems not the one to which we are accus- 
tomed. Mr. Pickwick is generally shown as 
a rather "cranky" and testy old gentleman 
in his expressions, whereas the note of all 
Phiz's" faces is a good softness and unctuous- 
ness even. Now this somewhat philosophical 
analysis points to a principle in art illustration 
which accounts in a great measure for the 
unsatisfactory results where it is attempted to 
illustrate familiar works such as those of 
Tennyson, Shakespeare, etc. The reader has 
a fixed idea before him, which he has formed 
for himself an indistinct, shapeless one it 
might be, but still of sufficient outline to be 
disturbed. Among the innumerable present- 
ments of Shakespeare's heroines no one has 
ever seen any that satisfied or that even cor- 
responded. They are usually not generalized 
enough. Again, the readers of "Pickwick" 
grew month by month, or number by number, 
more and more acquainted with the characters : 


for the figures and faces appeared over and 
over and yet over again. 

The most diverting, however, of all these 
imitators and extra-illustrators is assuredly 
the artist of the German edition. The series 
is admirably drawn, every figure well finished, 
but figures, faces, and scenes are unrecog- 
nizable. It is the Frenchman's idea of 
Hamlet. Mr. Pickwick and his friends are 
stout Germans, dressed in German garments, 
sitting in German restaurants with long 
tankards with lids before them. The inci- 
dents are made as literal and historical as 
possible. The difficulty, of course, was that 
none of their adventures could have occurred 
in a country like Germany, or if they did, 
would have become an affair of police. No 
German could see humour in that. Notwith- 
standing all this, the true Pickwickian will 
welcome them as a pleasant contribution to 
the Pickwickian humour, and no one would 
have laughed so loudly at them as Boz 


The original illustrations form a serious and 
important department of Pickwickian lore, 
and entail an almost scientific knowledge. 
Little, indeed, did the young " Boz " dream, 
when he was settling with his publishers that 
the work was to contain forty- two plates an 
immense number it might seem that these 
were to fructify into such an enormous 
progeny. We, begin, of course, with the 
regular official plates that belong strictly to 
the work. Here we find three artists 
at work each succeeding the other 
the unfortunate Robert Seymour coming first 
with his seven spirited pictures ; next the 
unlucky Buss, with his two condemned pro- 
ductions, later to be dismissed from the book 
altogether ; and finally, " Phiz," or Hablot K. 
Browne, who furnished the remaining plates 
to the end. As is well known, so great was 
the run upon the book that the plates were 
unequal to the duty, and " Phiz " had to re- 
engrave them several times often duplicates 
on the one plate naturally not copying them 


very closely. Hence we have the rather 
interesting "variations." He by-and-bye 
re-engraved Seymour's seven, copying them 
with wonderful exactness, and finally substi- 
tuted two of his own for those of the 
condemned Buss. The volume, therefore, was 
furnished with seven Seymours, and their seven 
replicas, the two Buss's, their two replicas, and 
the thirty-three " Phiz " pictures, each with its 
" variation." 

These variations are very interesting, and 
even amusing. On an ordinary careless glance 
one would hardly detect much difference 
the artist, who seemed to wish to have a 
certain freedom, made these changes either to 
amuse himself or as if resenting the monotony 
of copying. In any case they represent an 
amount of patient labour that is quite unique 
in such things. 

The Pickwickian " student" may be glad to 
go with us through some of the plates and 
have an account of these differences. We 
must premise that the first state of the plates 


may be considered " proofs before letters " 
the descriptive titles being only found in the 
later editions. 

1. " The Frontispiece." (We shall call the 
second state #, the first a.) In a the signature 
" Phiz," " fct." or " fecit " is on the left, in b it 
is divided half on each side. The harlequin 
painting has a full face in a y a side face in b. 
The face at the apex of the picture has a 
mouth closed in , and open in a. There are 
variations in nearly all the grotesque faces ; 
and in b the faces of Mr. Pickwick and Sam 
are fuller and more animated. In b the 
general treatment of the whole is richer. 

2. "The Title-page." In a the sign has 
Veller, in b Weller. Old Weller's face in b is 
more resolved and animated ; in a water is 
flowing from the pail. 

3. "Mr. Pickwick Addressing the Club." 
Mr. Pickwick in b is more cantankerous than 
in a all the faces scarcely correspond in 
expression, though the outlines are the same. 
The work, shading, etc., is much bolder in b. 


4. " Scene with the Cabman." Very little 
difference between the plates, save in the 
spectacles lying on the ground. These are 

5. " The Sagacious Dog." b is more 
heavily shaded, but a is much superior in the 
dog and face of the sportsman. Trees in b 
more elaborate. 

6. " Dr. Slammer's Defiance." The figures 
on the top of the stairs are much darker and 
bolder in b. Jingle's and Tupman's faces are 
better in b than in a, and Jingle's legs are 
better drawn in b. 

7. " The Dying Clown." A most dramatic 
and tragic conception, which shows that 
Seymour would have been invaluable later on 
for Dickens' more serious work. The chief 
differences are in the face of the man at his 
bedside and the candle. 

8. " Mr. Pickwick in Search of his Hat." 
The drawing of Mr. Pickwick's legs is rather 
strange. The right leg could hardly be so 
much twisted back while Mr. Pickwick runs 


straight forward ; his left hand or arm is 
obscure in both. Air the faces differ the hat 
in b has much more the look of being blown 
along than that in a. 

9. " Mr. Winkle Soothes a Refractory 
Steed." Seymour's horse is infinitely more 
spirited and better drawn than Phiz's. Its 
struggling attitude is admirable. Seymour's 
landscape is touched more delicately; the 
faces differ in both. 

10. "The Cricket Match." First Buss 
plate. He introduced a farcical incident not 
in the text the ball knocking off the fielder's 
hat, who is quite close to the batsman. A 
very poor production. Observe the "ante- 
diluvian" shape of the bat no paddings 
on the legs. The sketch is valuable as show- 
ing how not to interpret Dickens' humour, or 
rather how to interpret it in a strictly literal 
way that is, without humour. 

11. "Tupman in the Arbour." Second 
Buss plate rather ostentatiously signed 
"Drawn and etched by R. W. Buss." 


Tupman appears to be tumbling over Miss 

12. The same subject by "Phiz." A 
remarkable contrast in treatment ; there is 
the suggestion of the pair being surprised. 
We see how the fat boy came on them. The 
old Manor Farm in the background, with its 
gables, etc., is a pleasing addition, and like all 
" Phiz's " landscapes, delicately touched in. 
The scared alarm on the two faces is first-rate 
even Miss Wardle's foot as well as Tup- 
man's is expressive. There appears to be no 
" variation " of this plate. 

13. " The Influence of the Salmon." A 
truly dramatic group overflowing with humour. 
Note no fewer than ten faces in the back- 
ground, servants, etc., all expressing interest 
according to their class and degree. The five 
chief characters express drunkenness in five 
different fashions : the hopeless, combative, 
despairing, affectionate, etc. Wardle's stolid 
calm is good. 

14. " The Breakdown." This was "Phiz's" 


coup d'essai after he was called in, and is a 
most spirited piece. But the variations make 
the second plate almost a new one. The 
drawing, grouping, etc., in b are an enormous 
improvement, and supply life and animation. 
The three figures, Pickwick, Wardle, and the 
postillion, are all altered for the better. In b 
Mr. Pickwick's nervousness, as he is extricated 
from the chaise, is well shown. The postillion 
becomes a round spirited figure, instead of a 
mere sketch ; Wardle, as in the text, instead 
of stooping down and merely showing his 
back, is tramping about gesticulating. A 
very spirited white horse is introduced with a 
postillion as spirited ; the single chaise in the 
distance, the horses drawn back, and Jingle 
stretching out, is admirable. It is somehow 
conveyed in a clever way in b that Miss 
Wardle is peeping through the hind window 
at the scene. There is a wheel on the ground 
in b, and one hat ; in a there are two hats 
Mr. Pickwick's, which is recognizable, and 


15. " First Appearance of Mr. S. Weller." 
In the first issue a faint " Nemo " can be 
made out in the corner, and it is said the same 
signature is on the preceding plate, though I 
have never been able to trace it clearly. This 
plate, as is well known, represents the court of 
the Old White Hart Inn in the Borough, 
which was pulled down some years ago. On 
this background the galleries, etc., being 
picturesquely indicated stand out brilliantly 
the four figures. The plate was varied in 
important ways. In the b version some fine 
effects of light and shade are brought out by 
the aid of the loaded cart and Wardle's figure. 
Wardle's hat is changed from a common 
round one to a low broad-leafed one, his figure 
made stouter, and he is clothed with dark 
instead of white breeches, his face broadened 
and made more good-humoured. Sam's face 
in b is made much more like the ideal Sam ; 
that in a is grotesque. Perker's face and 
attitude are altered in b, where he is made 
more interrogative. Mr. Pickwick in b is 


much more placid and bland than in #, and he 
carries his hat more jauntily. Top-boots in b 
are introduced among those which Sam is 
cleaning. He, oddly, seems to be cleaning a 
white boot. A capital dog in b is sniffing at 
Mr. Pickwick's leg; in a there is a rather 
unmeaning skulking animal. All the smaller 
figures are altered. 

16. "Mrs. Bardell Faints." The first 
plate is feeble and ill-drawn, though Mrs. 
Bardell's and Tupman's faces are good, the 
latter somewhat farcical ; the boy " Tommy " 
is decidedly bad and too small. Mr. Pick- 
wick's face in a is better than in b. In the 
second attempt all is bolder and more spirited. 
The three Pickwickians are made to express 
astonishment, even in their legs. There is a 
table-desk in a, not in b. A clock and two 
vases are introduced, and a picture over the 
mirror representing a sleeping beauty with a 

17. " The Election at Eatanswill." The 
first plate represents an election riot in front 


of the hustings, which is wild and fairly 
spirited. But no doubt it appeared somewhat 
confused to the artist. In his second he made 
it quite another matter. Over the hustings he 
introduced a glimpse of the old Ipswich gables. 
He changed the figure and dress of Fizkin, the 
rival candidate. He had Perker sitting on the 
rail, but substituted a standing-up figure, 
talking presumably Perker, but taller than 
that gentleman. In b, Mr. Pickwick's face 
expresses astonishment at the disorder ; in a 
he is mildly placid. In b the figure behind 
Mr. Pickwick is turned into Sam by placing a 
cockade on his hat. Next to Fizkin is a new 
portly figure introduced. The figures in the 
crowd are changed in wholesale fashion, and 
yet the " root idea " in both is the same. An 
artist, we fancy, would learn much from these 
contrasts, seeing how strikingly " Phiz " could 
shift his characters. In the first draft there 
was not sufficient movement. To the left 
there was a stout sailor in a striped jacket who 
was thrusting a pole into the chest of a thin 


man in check trousers. This, as drawn, 
seemed too tranquil, and he substituted a 
stouter, more jovial figure with gymnastic 
action the second was made more contrasted. 
Next him was a confused group a man with 
a paper cap, in place of which he supplied a 
stout man on whom the other was driven 
back, and who was being pushed from behind. 
The animation of the background is immensely 
increased by hats, and arms, and sticks being 
waved. Everything is bolder and clearer. 
The second trombone player, however, is not 
so spirited as the first, and the drum-beater 
becomes rather a " Punch and Judy " show- 
man. An artistic effect of light is produced 
by this drum. There are a great many more 
boards, too, introduced in b. 

" Mrs. Leo Hunter's Fancy dress Dejeune." 
In b the finish and treatment are infinitely 
improved. Mr. Pickwick's face and figure is 
more refined and artistic. The way he holds 
his hat in his right hand and his left also are 
improved; both are more extended. Mr. 


Snodgrass's left leg is brought behind Mr. 
Pickwick's in b. Water a pond perhaps is 
in front. Tupman's hat is altered in b y and 
feathers added ; his face is more serious and 
less grotesque. Mrs. Pott is more piquant, as 
the author suggested to the artist. The bird- 
cage, instead of being high in the tree, is 
lowered and hangs from it. The most curious 
change is that of Pott, who in a is out of all 
scale, seeming to be about seven feet 
high. He was lowered in b, and given a 
beard and a more hairy cap. It was said, 
indeed, that the original face was too like 
Lord Brougham's, but the reason for the 
change was probably what I have given. 

"The Young Ladies' Seminary." All 
details are changed. The rather "cranky" 
face of Mr. Pickwick, utterly unlike him, was 
improved and restored to its natural benevo- 
lence ; more detail put into the faces, notably 
the cook's. The girls are made more distinct 
and attractive the lady principal at the back 
made effective ; all the foliage treated 


differently, a tree on the left removed. In a 
there is a sort of hook on the inside of the 
door to hold a bell, which is absent ; in b it is 
added. The bolts, etc., are different. 

"Mr. Pickwick in the Pound." b is more 
brilliant and vastly improved ; the smaller 
donkey is removed, the three reduced to two ; 
the sweep's cap is made white ; the faces are 
altered, and made more animated. Mr. 
Pickwick's figure in the barrow is perhaps not 
improved, but his face is. 

"Mr. Pickwick in the Attorney's Office." 
Sam's face in a was quite unlike, and was 
improved ; the position of his legs altered. 
The other points are much the same. 

" Last Visit of Heyland to the Old Man." 
This is a sort of anticipation of " Phiz's " later 
treatment of tragic subjects, as supplied for 
" Bleak House " and such stories. Heyling's 
cloak in b is draped over his left arm, the 
boards of the door are outlined differently. 
In a the face of the old man a side one, with 
little expression; in b it was made three- 


quarters, and contorted with horror the 
attitude powerfully expressive, indeed. The 
figures of both are worth comparing. 

"The Double-bedded Room." In b the 
lady's face is refined, and made less of the 
" nut-cracker " type. The comb is removed, 
her feet are separated, and the figure becomes 
not ungraceful. A white night-gown in b is 
introduced ; in a it is her day-gown, and 
dark ; the back of the chair in b is treated 
more ornamentally ; in a a plain frilled night- 
cap is hung on the chair, changed in b to a 
more grotesque and "Gamp-like" headgear. 
Nothing can be better in a than the effect of 
light from the rushlight on the floor. This is 
helped by the lady's figure, which is darkened 
in a, and thrown out by the white curtains 
behind. Mr. Pickwick's face in a is not good, 
and much improved in b. It will be noted 
that the artist often thus failed in his hero's 
face "missing his tip," as it were. This 
picture admirably illustrates the artist's power 
of legitimately emphasizing details such as 


the night-cap to add to the comic situation. 

" Mr. Weller Attacks the Executive of 
Ipswich." There is scarcely any alteration 
worth notice. 

" Job Trotter Encounters Sam." The two 
plates are nearly the same, except that Mary's 
face is made prettier. Sam's is improved, and 
Job Trotter's figure and face more marked 
and spirited. 

"Christmas Eve at Mr. Wardle's." The 
changes here are a cat and dog introduced in 
the foreground in , instead of the dog which 
in a is between Mr. Pickwick and the old 

" Gabriel Grubb." A face is introduced 
into a branch or knot of the tree an odd, 
rather far-fetched effect. The effectively out- 
lined church in the background is St. Albans 

" Mr. Pickwick Slides." In b Mr. Winkle's 
skates are introduced. In one version there 
are five stakes instead of four, and Miss 


Allen's fur boots and feet are depicted 
differently in each. 

" Conviviality at Bob Sawyer's." The two 
plates correspond almost exactly save for a 
slight alteration in the arrangement of the 
books in the case. 

"Mr. Pickwick Sits for his Portrait." Slight 
alterations in the faces and in the bird-cage. 
The arrangement of the panes in the window 
is also different. Mr. Pickwick's face is made 
more intelligent. A handle is supplied to a 
pewter pot on the floor. 

"The Warden's Room." Almost exactly 
the same in both. But why has Mr. Pickwick 
his spectacles on when just roused from sleep? 
There is a collar to the shirt hanging from 
the cord. 

"The Meeting with Jingle." Very slight 
changes in the faces. The child's face in b 
is admirable, and, like one of Cruikshank's 
miniatures, it conveys alarm and grief. The 
face of the woman watering her plant is 
improved. Note the Hogarthian touch of the 


initials carved on the window, sufficiently 
distinct and yet not intrusively so. This is a 
most skilfully grouped and dramatic picture, 
and properly conveys the author's idea. 

" The Ghostly Passenger." This illustration 
of what is one of the best tales of mystery is 
equally picturesque and original. The five 
figures in front are truly remarkable. The 
elegant interesting figure of the woman, the 
fop with his hat in the air, the bully with the 
big sword, the man with the blunderbuss, and 
the bewildered rustic, to say nothing of the 
muffled figures on the coach, make up a 
perfect play. There seems a flutter over all ; 
it is like, as it was intended to be, a scene in 
a dream. 

" Mr. Winkle Returns under Extraordinary 
Circumstances." There is little difference 
between the plates, save as to the details of 
the objects in the cupboard. In b some 
bottles have been introduced on the top shelf. 
Mrs. Winkle's is a pleasing, graceful figure in 
both, and improved and refined in b. More 


spirit, too, is put into Mr. Pickwick's figure as 
he rises in astonishment. It may be noted 
what a graceful type of womanhood then 
prevailed, the face being thrown out by 
"bands" of hair and ringlets, the large 
spreading bonnets and white veils. Mary 
wears an enormous bonnet or hat like her 

" Mr. Sawyer's Mode of Travelling." The 
amazing spirit and movement of this picture 
cannot be too much praised. The chaise 
seems whirling along, so that the coach, 
meeting it, seems embarrassed and striving to 
get out of the way. The Irish family, 
struggling to keep up with the chaise, is 
inimitable. There are some changes in b. 
The man with the stick behind has a bundle 
or bag attached. The mother with her 
three children is a delightful group, and much 
improved in the second plate. The child 
holding up flowers is admirably drawn. The 
child who has fallen is given a different 


attitude in b. The dog, too, is slightly 

"The Rival Editors." There is little change 
made, save that more plates, jugs, etc., are 
introduced. The "row" is shown with 
extraordinary spirit. Note the grotesque 
effect of Pott's face, shown through the cloth 
that Sam has put over his head. The onions 
have got detached from the hank hung to the 
ceiling, and are tumbling on the combatants, 
and a capital touch this the blackbird, 
whose cage has been covered over to secure 
its repose, is shown in b dashing against the 
bars. We might ask, however, what does the 
cook there, and why does she " trouble herself 
about the warming-pan " ? 

"Mary and the Fat Boy." Both plates 
nearly the same, the languishing face of the 
Fat Boy admirable. Mary's figure, as she 
draws the chair, charming, though somewhat 
stout at the back. The cook is present, and 
a plate laid for her, which is contrary to the 


" Mr. Weller and his Friends Drinking to 
Mr. Pell." Plates almost the same, save for a 
slight alteration in the faces, and a vinegar 
cruet introduced next to Mr. Pell's oysters. 
Admirable and most original and distinct are 
the figures of the four coachmen, even the one 
of whom we have only a back view. 

Perhaps no one of the plates displays 
Phiz's vivid power so forcibly as the one of 
the trial " Bardell v. Pickwick." Observe the 
dramatic animation, with the difficulty of 
treating a number of figures seated in regular 
rows. The types of the lawyers are truly 
admirable. In this latter piece there are no 
less than thirty-five faces, all characteristic, 
showing the peculiar smug and pedantic cast 
of the barristerial lineaments. Note specially 
the one at the end of the third bench who is 
engrossed in his brief, the pair in the centre 
who are discussing something, the two stand- 
ing up. But what is specially excellent is the 
selection effaces for the four counsel concerned 
in the case. Nothing could be more appro- 


priate or better suit the author's description. 
What could excel, or " beat " Buzfuz with his 
puffed, coarse face and hulking form? His 
brother Serjeant has the dried, "peaked" 
look of the overworked barrister, and though 
he is in his wig we recognize him at once, 
having seen him before at his chambers. Mr. 
Phunkey, behind, is the well-meaning but 
incapable performer to be exhibited in his 
examination of Winkle ; and Mr. Skimpin is 
the alert, unscrupulous, wide-awake prac- 
titioner who " made such a hare " of Mr. 
Winkle. The composition of this picture is 
indeed a work of high art. 

In " Mr. Pickwick sliding," how admirably 
caught is the tone of a genial, frosty day at a 
country-house, with the animation of the 
spectators the charming landscape. In the 
scene of " Under the Mistletoe " at Manor 
Farm, the Fat Boy, by some mistake of 
size, cannot be more than five or six years 
old, and Tupman is shown on one knee 
" making up " to one of the young ladies. 


Beaux seemed to have been very scarce in 
the district where stout, elderly gentlemen 
were thus privileged. 

The curious thing is that hardly a single 
face of Mr. Pickwick's corresponds with its 
fellows, yet all are sufficiently like and recog- 
nizable. In the first picture of the club he is 
a cantankerous, sour, old fellow, but the artist 
presently mellowed him. The bald, benevo- 
lent forehead, the portly little figure, the 
gaiters, eye-glass and ribbon always put on 
expressively, seem his likeness. The " Mr. 
Pickwick sliding" and the "Mr. Pickwick 
sitting for his portrait in the Fleet " have 
different faces. 

There has always been a sort of fascination 
in tracing out and identifying the Pickwickian 
localities. It is astonishing the number of 
persons that have been engrossed with this 
pursuit. Take Muggleton for instance, which 
seems to have hitherto defied all attempts at 
discovery. The younger Charles Dickens 
fancied that town, Mailing, which lies to the 


south of Rochester. Mr. Frost, Mr. Hughes, 
and other " explorers " all have their favourite 
town. I, myself, had fixed on Maidstone as 
fulfilling the necessary conditions of having a 
Mayor and Corporation ; as against this choice 
and that of all the towns that were south of 
Rochester there was always this fact, that Boz 
describes the party going up the street as 
they left Rochester, a route that led them 
north-east. But the late Miss Dickens 
" Mamie " as she was affectionately called in 
her pleasing and very natural little book, 
" My Father as I Recall Him," has casually 
dropped a hint which puts us on the right 
track. When driving with her on the " beau- 
tiful back road to Cobham once, he pointed out 
a spot. There it was, he said, where Mr. 
Pickwick dropped his whip." The distressed 
travellers had to walk some twelve or fourteen 
miles about the distance of Muggleton 
which was important enough to have a Mayor 
and Corporation, etc. We ourselves have 
walked this road, and it led us to Gravesend. 


Gravesend we believe to be Muggleton 
against all competitors. Further, when chas- 
ing Jingle, Wardle went straight from 
Muggleton to town, as you can do from 
Gravesend ; from which place there is a long 
walk to Cobham. 

For abundance of editions the immortal 
Pickwick can hold its own with any modern 
of its "weight, age, and size." From the 
splendid yet unwieldy edition de luxe^ all but 
Bible-like in its proportions, to the one penny 
edition sold on barrows in Cheapside, every 
form and pattern has been supplied. 

The Gadshill Edition, with Introduction by 
Andrew Lang, has recently been issued by 
Messrs. Chapman and Hall, and is all that can 
be desired. Print, paper, and size are excellent, 
perfect, even captivating. The old illustrations, 
from the original plates, are bright and clear, 
unworn and unclogged with ink. The editor 
has been judiciously reserved in his intro- 
duction and annotations. While Mr. Lang's 
lack of sympathy with Dickens is well-known, 


and, like Sam Weller after leaving the witness- 
box, he has said just as little respecting Mr. 
Pickwick as might be, " which was precisely 
the object he had in view all along." But it 
almost seems as though one required to be 
" brought up " in Pickwick, so to speak, 
thoroughly to understand him. No true 
Pickwickian would ever have called Tuckle 
the Bath Footman, " Blazer," or Jingle, 
"Jungle." It were better, too, not to adopt a 
carping tone in dealing with so joyous and 
irresponsible a work. " Dickens," we are told, 
" knew nothing of cricket." Yet in his prime 
the present writer has seen him "marking" 
all day long, or acting as umpire, with extra- 
ordinary knowledge and enthusiasm. In 
Pickwickian days the game was not what it is 
now ; it was always more or less irregular and 
disorderly. As proof of " Boz's " ignorance, 
Mr. Lang says it is a mystery why Podder 
" missed the bad balls, blocked the doubtful 
ones, took the good ones, and sent them 
flying, etc." Surely nothing could be plainer 


He "missed" that is, did not strike the 
balls of which nothing could be made, blocked 
the dangerous ones, and hit the good ones all 
over the field. What more or what better 
could Dr. Grace do ? 

The original agreement for " Pickwick " I 
have not seen, though it is probably in 
existence, but there is now being shown at 
the Earl's Court Victorian Era Exhibition a 
very interesting Pickwickian curio. When 
the last number had appeared, a deed was 
created between the two publishers, Edward 
Chapman and William Hall, giving them 
increased control over the book. It is dated 
November iSth, 1837, and sets out that the 
property consisted of three shares held by the 
two publishers and author. It was contracted 
that the former should purchase for a period 
of five years the author's third share. And it 
was further stipulated that at the end of that 
term, they, and no one else, should have the 
benefit of any new arrangement. There was 


also an arrangement about purchasing the 
"stock," etc., at the end of the term. No 
mention, however, is made of the terms or 
" consideration," for which reference is made 
to another deed. The whole is commendably 
short and intelligible. 

A New Edition 


Charles Dickens's Works 

It maybe asserted, without fear of contradiction, that the writings 
of the Author of " Pickwick " have gone through a larger number of 
editions than those of any other nineteenth-century novelist. Notwith- 
standing this remarkable fact, the demand for Charles Dickens's 
fascinating stories is still increasing, so it is not surprising that many 
well-known publishing firms have been induced, from time to time, 
to issue editions of the works of England's favourite author. The 
Roxburghe Press, Limited, noted for the dainty character of its 
publications, desires to announce the immediate preparation of a 

"Roxburghe" Edition of 

Charles Dickens's Works, 

which will be offered at the average price of 3/6 per volume. It 
is etermined to produce this edition in the most tasteful manner as 
regards newly cast type, specially-made paper, appropriate and 
attractive binding, etc., altogether in a style never before attempted. 
The " ROXBURGHE " EDITION will be rendered particularly noteworthy 
by means of carefully executed facsimiles of all the original 

This will be the daintiest Edition ever issued 
from any Press, 

The Original Illustrations 

By Cruikshank, Seymour, Buss, " Phiz," Cattermole, and 
others, these being specially engraved, printed separately 
on Plate paper and bound in with the Works. 

The interest of each volume will be considerably enhanced by a 
chatty INTRODUCTION from the pen of Mr. F. G. KITTON 
(Author of " Dickensiana," "Charles Dickens by Pen and Pencil," 
etc.)) who will contribute to these prefatory chapters much that is 
interesting concerning the history and bibliography of each novel, 
while Dickensian localities and the prototypes of prominent characters 
in the stories will be considered and discussed. The "ROXBURGHB" 
EDITION will also include 

Portraits of Charles Dickens, 

representing him at various periods of his career. In the preparation 
of the volumes Mr. CHARLES F. RIDEAL (Author of " Wellerisms" 
and " Charles Dickens's Heroines and Women Folk," etc.) is 
privileged in securing the invaluable assistance and advice of Mrs. 
Perugini (Kate Dickens), Mr. George Cruikshank, Junr., nephew of 
the original illustrator, and Mr. Gordon Browne (son of "Phiz"). 
Mr. Rideal will personally supervise the production of the entire 
edition, which is sufficient guarantee that full justice will be done to 
the volumes, and that their rechercM character will be maintained. 

The "ROXBURGHE" EDITION will be issued at monthly intervals 
continuing in the original order of publication^ as follows : 






Containing Old Curiosity Shop and Barnaby Rudge 













It is probable that the series will include one or more other volumes, 
comprising the Minor Writings of Charles Dickens, such as : 
" Sunday under Three Heads," " The Mudfog Papers," " Sketches 
of Young Gentlemen," " Sketches of Young Couples," Literary 
Articles and Reviews, etc. These however, will be described in a 
separate circular. 

From ^8,000 to ,10,000, it is anticipated, will be expended in the 
production of this Series. 

Important Notice. 

An Edition de, on Demy 8vo paper, exquisitely 
bound, strictly limited to 500 copies of each work, 
signed and numbered, will be issued at half-a-guinea 
per volume nett. Applications for this Edition should 
be made at once in order to prevent disappointment. 


Sketch of "Mr. Serjeant Buzfuz"). By SIR FRANK LOCKWOOD, 
Q.C., M.P. Second Edition, slightly revised. Manilla, One Shilling ; 
Cloth, a veritable Edition de Luxe, Eighteenpence. 

" The lecture itself is full of that genial humour characteristic ot Mr. Lockwood, 
who is acknowledged to be the most jocular of Queen's Counsellors, and the cleverest 
caricaturist at the Bar. He has been a devoted student of the works of Charles 
Dickens, and has selected with much discrimination those passages that most 
strikingly exhibit the novelist's acquaintance with legal men and affairs fifty years 

" The effort was well worthy of permanent inclusion in lore, and, as it 
is published at the price of one shilling, the little brochure is likely to find an ex- 
tended field of readers. It is prefaced by an original pen-and-ink sketch of Serjeant 
Buzfuz by Mr. Lockwood, who is, as is generally known, an adept at characteristic 
portraiture of this kind." UMPIRE. 


the most interesting books issued. Containing Photographs and 

Information never before published. Crown 8vo, Art Canvas, Three 
Shillings and Sixpence. 


of Charles Dickens (With Copies of the Original Monthly Wrappers). 
By ROBERT ALLBUT. Cloth, Half a Crown. 

Thoughts concerning them. A Revised Lecture. By CHARLES F. 
RIDEAL, with drawings of "Dot" and "Edith Dombey" by 
FLORENCE PASH. Second Edition. Cloth, Eighteenpence. 
" A delightful little book." INSTITUTE. 

Crown 8vo, Art Canvas, Two Shillings and Sixpence. 

THE DICKENS ENCYCLOPAEDIA. A Dictionary of all the characters 
to be found in the works of Charles Dickens. By M. WOOD. Crown 
8vo, Art Canvas, Three Shillings and Sixpence. 

"WELLERISMS" from "Pickwick" and "Master Humphrey's 
Clock." Selected by CHARLES F. RIDEAL, and Edited with an In- 
troduction by CHARLES KENT, Author of " The Humour and Pathos 
of Charles Dickens." Third Edition. With a new and original 
drawing by GEORGE CRUIICSHANK, Junr., of Mr. Samuel Weller. 
Cloth, Half a Crown; Manilla, Eighteenpence. 


Collated by F. G. KITTON, Author of " Dickensiana," "Charles 
Dickens by Pen and Pencil," etc. Cloth, Two Shillings and Sixpence. 

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