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  • Published: 15 September 1999
  • ISBN: 9781857152111
  • Imprint: Everyman
  • Format: Hardback
  • Pages: 944
  • RRP: $27.99

The Pickwick Papers




When young Charles Dickens was commissioned to write the text for a series of sporting illustrations in 1836, no one could have suspected that this journeyman task was to turn in to one of the great comic novels in English literature. After the premature death of the original illustrator, Dickens took charge of the project, which was published in monthly parts. The result is a brilliant panorama of English life in the 1830s, a cornucopia of stories and vignettes featuring dozens of vividly drawn characters. Chief among them are Mr Pickwick himself, a later day Don Quixote travelling about the country righting wrongs; and his Sancho Panza, Sam Weller, whose pithy sayings and bizarre anecdotes immediately became and remained part of national mythology. With The Pickwick Papers Dickens established himself at a single stroke as a major creative artist, revealing the depth of his human sympathies, the breadth of his interests and his extraordinary linguistic virtuosity. His first novel, published when he was 25, is his first masterpiece. The Everyman edition includes 43 illustrations by Seymour and 'Phiz' which accompanied the original edition and also reprints the 1907 preface by G. K. Chesterton.

  • Published: 15 September 1999
  • ISBN: 9781857152111
  • Imprint: Everyman
  • Format: Hardback
  • Pages: 944
  • RRP: $27.99

About the author

Charles Dickens

Charles Dickens was born in Hampshire on February 7, 1812. His father was a clerk in the navy pay office, who was well paid but often ended up in financial troubles. When Dickens was twelve years old he was send to work in a shoe polish factory because his family had been taken to the debtors' prison. Fagin is named after a boy Dickens disliked at the factory. His career as a writer of fiction started in 1833 when his short stories and essays began to appear in periodicals. The Pickwick Papers, his first commercial success, was published in 1836. In the same year he married the daughter of his friend George Hogarth, Catherine Hogarth. The serialisation of Oliver Twist began in 1837 while The Pickwick Papers was still running. Many other novels followed and The Old Curiosity Shop brought Dickens international fame and he became a celebrity in America as well as Britain. He separated from his wife in 1858. Charles Dickens died on 9 June 1870, leaving his last novel, The Mystery of Edwin Drood, unfinished. He is buried in Westminster Abbey.

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