The sergeant ran in first when he had run the noise quite down
Felix O. C. Darley
9.9 x 8.5 cm vignetted
Dickens's Great Expectations, Household Edition (1861), vol. 1 frontispiece.
[Click on image to enlarge it.]
Scanned image and text by Philip V. Allingham.
[You may use this image without prior permission for any scholarly or educational purpose as long as you (1) credit the person who scanned the image and (2) link your document to this URL in a web document or cite the Victorian Web in a print one.] Image reproduced courtesy of Dickens collector and bibliophile Dan Calinescu, Toronto.
The sergeant ran in first, when we had run the noise quite down, and two of his men ran in close upon him. Their pieces were cocked and levelled when we all ran in.
"Here are both men!" panted the sergeant, struggling at the bottom of a ditch. "Surrender, you two! and confound you for two wild beasts! Come asunder!"
Water was splashing, and mud was flying, and oaths were being sworn, and blows were being struck, when some more men went down into the ditch to help the sergeant, and dragged out, separately, my convict and the other one. Both were bleeding and panting and execrating and struggling; but of course I knew them both directly.
"Mind!" said my convict, wiping blood from his face with his ragged sleeves, and shaking torn hair from his fingers: "I took him! I give him up to you! Mind that!"
"It's not much to be particular about," said the sergeant; "it'll do you small good, my man, being in the same plight yourself. Handcuffs there!"
"I don't expect it to do me any good. I don't want it to do me more good than it does now," said my convict, with a greedy laugh. "I took him. He knows it. That's enough for me."
The other convict was livid to look at, and, in addition to the old bruised left side of his face, seemed to be bruised and torn all over. He could not so much as get his breath to speak, until they were both separately handcuffed, but leaned upon a soldier to keep himself from falling. [Chapter Five, p. 50-51]
Whereas other illustrators, such as Marcus Stone, have entirely overlooked the escaped convicts, or have focussed instead on Magwitch's dramatic encounter with Pip in the churchyard in the early chapters, as is the case with Furniss's illustration Pip's Struggle with the Escaped Convict, with only the benefit of McLenan's illustrations as a reference, Darley has realised the dramatic moment when the party of soldiers comes across the two escapees, wrestling in the mud of the marshes. The tangle of arms, the expressions on the faces of Magwitch, Pip, and Joe, and the composition of the plate generally make it a highly effective realisation of a textual moment rarely dealt with by illustrators. In contrast to the central position accorded Pip and his brother-in-law and surrogate parent in the Darley photogravure, note Fraser's emphasis on the wrestling convicts and the absence of Pip as observer in The sergeant ran in first. Darley's precision in the depiction of the military uniforms suggests that he researched the matter in order to make the illustration convincing historically. The most apt point of comparison for Darley's dynamic handling of the convicts remains, however, John McLenan's serial illustration Three soldiers carry away Magwitch in shackles, the uncaptioned headpiecefor the 8 December 1860 issue of Harper's Weekly: A Journal of Civilization.
The 1861 frontispiece for the first volume by a renowned American illustrator, Felix Octavius Carr Darley (then 39 and well established as a professional artist), taken in conjunction with the frontispiece for the second volume (the return of Magwitch from Australia), suggests that, according to Darley's reading of the novel just concluded in serial, this is a story of fathers (and surrogate parents)-and-sons, as Pip from Joe's shoulder watches the apprehension of "his" convict, the man whose hard labour abroad will fund his great expectations. Neither plate significantly points to the influential females of the story, Mrs. Joe, Miss Havisham, and Estella, the latter two appearing prominently in Marcus Stone's wood-engravings for the Illustrated Library Edition. Whereas Stone's series, by omitting Magwitch, withholds the plot secret of the source of Pip's expectations, Darley's second frontispiece must have created suspicions in the minds of alert readers.
Pertinent Illustrations in Other Editions: 1860, 1867, 1876, 1885, and 1903
Left: John McLenan's headnote vignette for the 8 Dec. 1860 instalment. Centre: Sol Eytinge, Jr.'s "Pip and The Convict". Right: F. A. Fraser's "The sergeant ran in first" . [Click on images to enlarge them.]
Left: F. W. Pailthorpe's "Terrible Stranger in the Churchyard." Centre: H. M. Brock's "I made bold to say 'I am glad you enjoy it'". Right: Harry Furniss's "Pip's Struggle with the Escaped Convict." [Click on images to enlarge them.]
Dickens, Charles. Great Expectations. Il. John McLenan. Harper's Weekly: A Journal of Civilization 4 (8 December 1860): 773.
Dickens, Charles. Great Expectations. Il. F. O. C. Darley. Volume 1. The Household Edition. New York: James G. Gregory, 1861.
Dickens, Charles. Great Expectations. Il. John McLenan. Philadelphia: T. B. Peterson, 1861.
Dickens, Charles. Great Expectations. Il. Marcus Stone. The Illustrated Library Edition. London: Chapman and Hall, 1864.
Dickens, Charles. Great Expectations. Il. Sol Eytinge, Junior. Diamond Edition. 14 vols. Boston: Ticknor & Fields, 1867.
Dickens, Charles. Great Expectations. Il. F. A. Fraser. Volume 6 of the Household Edition. London: Chapman and Hall, 1876.
Dickens, Charles. Great Expectations. Il. F. W. Pailthorpe. London: Robson & Kerslake, 23 Coventry Street, Haymarket, 1885.
Dickens, Charles. Great Expectations. Il. H. M. Brock. Imperial Edition. 16 vols. London: Gresham Publishing Company [34 Southampton Street, The Strand, London], 1901-3.
Dickens, Charles. Great Expectations. Il. Harry Furniss. Charles Dickens Library Edition. 18 vols. London: Educational Book Company, 1910. Vol 14.
Last modified 24 February 2014