The Haunted Man and The Student
9 x 7.2 cm, vignetted
Dickens's The Haunted Man and The Ghost's Bargain. AFancy for Christmas Time, The Pears' Centenary Edition, vol. 5, page 94.
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Scanned image and text by Philip V. Allingham.
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He was gazing drearily upon the place where she had been, when Redlaw came out of his concealment, and came to the door.
"When sickness lays its hand on you again," he said, looking fiercely back at him, "— may it be soon! — Die here! Rot here!"
"What have you done?" returned the other, catching at his cloak. "What change have you wrought in me? What curse have you brought upon me? Give me back myself!"
"Give me back myself!" exclaimed Redlaw like a madman. "I am infected! I am infectious! I am charged with poison for my own mind, and the minds of all mankind. Where I felt interest, compassion, sympathy, I am turning into stone. Selfishness and ingratitude spring up in my blighting footsteps. I am only so much less base than the wretches whom I make so, that in the moment of their transformation I can hate them."
As he spoke — the young man still holding to his cloak — he cast him off, and struck him: then, wildly hurried out into the night air where the wind was blowing, the snow falling, the cloud-drift sweeping on, the moon dimly shining; and where, blowing in the wind, falling with the snow, drifting with the clouds, shining in the moonlight, and heavily looming in the darkness, were the Phantom's words, "The gift that I have given, you shall give again, go where you will!"
Whither he went, he neither knew nor cared, so that he avoided company."Stave Two: The Gift Bestowed," p. 93-95]
The caption immediately below the illustration points directly towards the moment realised: "As he spoke — the young man still holding to his cloak — he cast him off and struck him" (94, quoted from the top of p. 95). The bare caption does not reveal, however, that Redlaw is conflicted about his feelings for the poor student since is the son of Longford, the man who stole the woman whom Redlaw was in love with and who, by the boy's own admission, has not treated her well. Although Redlaw has intimated that he has entirely forgotten his past grievances and heartache, the reader is not convinced that his attitude to "Denham" (that is, Longford's son) is not conditioned by his sense of having been wronged by the student's parents. Since the situation is highly melodramatic, verging on the Sensational, Green has the figures caught in emotional poses, the young man in his dressing-gown and the professor, in street clothes, presenting a study in opposites. Green appears not to have attended to the original series of illustrations as his Redlaw and Longford do not much resemble these characters as drawn by Frank Stone, John Leech, Clarkson Stanfield, and John Tenniel — or perhaps he was striving for a consistency that the original team of illustrators with very different individual styles failed to deliver. Although the interest here is psychological, the illustrator is compelled to reflect the characters' anxieties about loss of identity through selective memory loss (the Phantom's dubious "gift" to Redlaw and any with whom he comes in contact, making him a "carrier" forthe mental/emotional "infection") in terms of their anguished expressions and physical conflict. Other illustrators in realising the relationship between the professor and his student have chosen an earlier moment in the chapter, when Redlaw first arrives in Denham's apartment above the Tetterbys' rooms, possibly because the student's surprise is easier to show than his confusion at the loss of memory which Redlaw has apparently caused.
Relevant Illustrations from the 1848 and Later Editions
Left: Frank Stone's study of Milly and the long-haired "Denham" whom she is tending on his couch, Milly and the Student Right: Fred Barnard's study of the surprised student and Denham's ominous visitor, "Mr. Redlaw!" he exclaimed, and started up. (1878). [Click on images to enlarge them.]
E. A. Abbey's depiction of the ill student in his nightgown looks nothing like the Denham of the scene in the 1848 text, but one cannot assess the appearance and attitude of his visiting professor, his back toward the viewer in "Mr. Redlaw!" he exclaimed, and started up (1876).
Cohen, Jane Rabb. "The Illustrators of the Christmas Books, John Leech."Charles Dickens and His original Illustrators. Columbus: University of Ohio Press, 1981. Pp. 141-151.
Dickens, Charles. The Haunted Man; or, The Ghost's Bargain. Illustrated by John Leech, Frank Stone, John Tenniel, and Clarkson Stanfield. London: Bradbury and Evans, 1848.
___. The Haunted Man. Illustrated by John Leech, Frank Stone, John Tenniel, and Clarkson Stanfield. (1848). Rpt. in Charles Dickens's Christmas Books, ed. Michael Slater. Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1971, rpt. 1978. Vol. 2, p. 235-362, 365-366.
___. The Haunted Man and The Ghost's Bargain. A Fancy for Christmas Time. Illustrated by Charles Green, R. I. London: A & F Pears, 1912.
___. Christmas Books. Illustrated by Sol Eytinge, Jr. The Diamond Edition. Boston: Ticknor and Fields, 1867.
___. Christmas Books, illustrated by Fred Barnard. Household Edition. London: Chapman and Hall, 1878.
___. Christmas Books, illustrated by A. A. Dixon. London & Glasgow: Collins' Clear-Type Press, 1906.
___. Christmas Books. Illustrated by Harry Furniss. The Charles Dickens Library Edition. London: Educational Book, 1910.
___. Christmas Stories. Illustrated by E. A. Abbey. The Household Edition. New York: Harper and Brothers, 1876.
___. The Haunted Man. Christmas Stories. Illustrated by Felix Octavius Carr Darley. The Household Edition. New York: James G. Gregory, 1861. Vol. 2, 155-300.
Last modified 1 September 2015