Sol Eytinge, Junior
10.2 cm high x 7.5 cm wide
Illustration for Dickens's The Uncommercial Traveller and Additional Christmas Stories in the Ticknor & Fields (Boston, 1867) Diamond Edition.
[Click on image to enlarge it and mouse over text for links.]
The picture's foregrounding the vigorous, sarcastic tramp and relegating the overweight, middle-aged minion of the law to the background suggests a bias towards youth in this study of binary opposites. [Commentary continues below]
Scanned image and text by Philip V. Allingham.
[You may use these images without prior permission for any scholarly or educational purpose as long as you (1) credit the photographer and (2) link your document to this URL in a web document or cite the Victorian Web in a print one.]
The young fellows who trudge along barefoot, five or six together, their boots slung over their shoulders, their shabby bundles under their arms, their sticks newly cut from some roadside wood, are not eminently prepossessing, but are much less objectionable. There is a tramp-fellowship among them. They pick one another up at resting stations, and go on in companies. They always go at a fast swing — though they generally limp too — and there is invariably one of the company who has much ado to keep up with the rest. They generally talk about horses, and any other means of locomotion than walking: or, one of the company relates some recent experiences of the road — which are always disputes and difficulties. As for example. "So as I'm a standing at the pump in the market, blest if there don't come up a Beadle, and he ses, "Mustn't stand here," he ses. "Why not?" I ses. "No beggars allowed in this town," he ses. "Who's a beggar?" I ses. "You are," he ses. 'Who ever see me beg? Did you?' I ses. "Then you're a tramp," he ses. "I'd rather be that than a Beadle," I ses.' (The company express great approval.) '"Would you?' he ses to me. 'Yes, I would,' I ses to him. "Well," he ses, 'anyhow, get out of this town.' 'Why, blow your little town!' I ses, 'who wants to be in it? Wot does your dirty little town mean by comin' and stickin' itself in the road to anywhere? Why don't you get a shovel and a barrer, and clear your town out o' people's way?"' (The company expressing the highest approval and laughing aloud, they all go down the hill.) [Chapter 11, "Tramps," p. 75-76]
Although Eytinge's frontispiece is successful as an introduction to Dickens's description of his experiences travelling on the Continent, like many of the other illustrations in this small volume, it is one of Eytinge's weakest performances. "Tramps," set near Dickens's Kent estate of Gadshill place, is less representative of the often sombre essays in The Uncommercial Traveller, if not of the more heart-warming ten Additional Christmas Stories that the Boston publishing house rolled into the volume. Although the Household Edition of 1877 contains thirty-six separate articles published originally in All the Year Round, concluding with "The Ruffian" (10 October 1868), the slight 1867 volume, published in Boston, is missing only an article in the series published after "Titbull's Alms-houses" — which appeared in All the Year Round on 24 October 1863, and which was republished under the same title in the 1868 Charles Dickens Edition in The Uncommercial Traveller by Chapman and Hall. Indeed, the 1867 Ticknor and Fields "Diamond Edition" (published to coincide with Dickens's second American reading tour, 19 November 1867 through 23 April 1868) contains fully twenty-eight of the twenty-nine pieces that Michael Slater and John Drew consider belong to the series of articles published in Dickens's new weekly journal between 28 January 1860 ("His General Line of Business" and "The Wreck") and 10 October 1868 ("The Ruffian," the last of the entries in the Chapman and Hall Gadshill Edition of 1898). The short story "The Italian Prisoner" appears out of order, probably because the editors regarded it as both a journalistic essay and a short story, and therefore suitable as a transition from the essays to the Christmas Stories. The 1867 American volume contains these twenty-eight Uncommercial Travellerselections, with the original periodical publication dates in All the Year Round noted:
I. "His General Line of Business" [28 January 1860]
II. "The Shipwreck" [28 January 1860]
III. "Wapping Workhouse" [18 February 1860]
IV. "Two Views of a Cheap Theatre" [sic] [25 February 1860]
V. "Poor Mercantile Jack" [10 March 1860]
VI. "Refreshments for Travellers" [24 March 1860]
VII. "Travelling Abroad" [7 April 1860]
VIII. "The Great Tasmania's Cargo" [21 April 1860]
IX. "City of London Churches" [5 May 1860]
X. "Shy Neighbourhoods" [American spelling not applied] [26 May 1860]
XI. "Tramps" [16 June 1860]
XII. "Dullborough Town" [30 June 1860]
XIII. "Night Walks" [21 July 1860]
XIV. "Chambers" [18 August 1860]
XV. "Nurse's Stories" [8 September 1860]
XVI. "Arcadian London" [29 September 1860]
XVII. "The Calais Night-Mail" [2 May 1863]
XVIII. "Some Recollections of Mortality" [16 May 1863]
XIX. "Birth-day Celebrations" [6 June 1863]
XX. "Bound for The Great Salt Lake" [4 July 1863]
XXI. "City of the Absent" [18 July 1863]
XXII. "An Old Stage-Coaching House" [1 August 1863]
XXIII. "The Boiled Beef of New England" [15 August 1863]
XXIV. "Chatham Dockyard" [29 August 1863]
XXV. "In the French-Flemish Country" [12 September 1863]
XXVI. "Medicines of Civilisation" [26 September 1863]
XXVII. "Titbull's Alms-houses" [24 October 1863]
XVIII [sic]. "The Italian Prisoner" [13 October 1860].
Missing, then, from the 1867 volume but present in the 1877 Household Edition volume published by Chapman and Hall is "the Ruffian" (10 October 1868). Since the last article that Ticknor and Fields could have considered for inclusion would have been "Titbull's Alms-Houses (24 October 1863), the twentieth-eighth identified by Slater and Drew, one may assume that the Boston editor of the 1867 volume made the same decision as the Chapman and Hall editor and Dickens himself in the year following the reading tour, a version that the editors of Dickens' Journalism have designated UT 1.
New York "Household Edition" (1865) and Other Household Edition (1876-77) Illustrations Relevant to "Tramps"
Left: E. G. Dalziel's "The Tramp and the Beadle" (1877). Right: Felix Octavius Carr Darley's "A Tramp Caravan" (1865). [Click on images to enlarge them.]
Later Editions. Left: E. G. Dalziel's Title-page Vignette (1877). Right: C. S. Reinhart's "He lies on the broad of his back, with his face turned up to the sky, and one of his ragged arms loosely thrown across his face " (1878). [Click on images to enlarge them.]
The four illustrations for The Uncommercial Traveller appeared in the reprinted version of the Diamond Edition volume, which also contains most of Dickens's later Christmas Stories, the notable exceptions being the Collins-Dickens collaborations The Perils of Certain English Prisoners (1857), A Message from the Sea (1860), and No Thoroughfare (1867) from the extra Christmas numbers of Household Words and All the Year Round. The 352-page volume also contains "Two Ghost Stories" reconfigured from framed tales — "The Trial for Murder" from Dr. Marigold and and "The Signal-Man" from Mugby Junction. Eight Eytinge wood-engravings accompany what amount to truncated framed-tale novellas, since the contributions from Dickens's "staffers" such as Elizabeth Gaskell have been cut, leaving only those portions written by Dickens himself.
The 1867 American volume contains these nine selections, with the original periodical publication dates in All the Year Round and Household Words noted:
I. "Somebody's Luggage in Three Chapters" 
II. "Mrs. Lirriper's Lodgings in Two Chapters" 
III. "Mrs. Lirriper's Legacy in Two Chapters" 
IV. "Dr. Marigold" 
V. "Two Ghost Stories" ["The Trial for Murder," 1865, and "The Signal Man," 1866]
VI. "The Boy at Mugby" 
VII. "The Seven Poor Travellers in Three Chapters" 
VIII. "The Holly-Tree. Three Branches" 
IX. "Going into Society" [from A House to Let, 1858]
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Dickens, Charles. The Uncommercial Traveller. Works of Charles Dickens. Household Edition. 55 vols. Illustrated by F. O. C. Darley and John Gilbert. New York: Sheldon and Co., 1865.
Dickens, Charles. The Uncommercial Traveller and Additional Christmas Stories. Illustrated by Sol Eytinge, Junior. Boston: Ticknor and Fields, 1867.
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Scenes and characters from the works of Charles Dickens; being eight hundred and sixty-six drawings, by Fred Barnard, Hablot Knight Browne (Phiz); J. Mahoney; Charles Green; A. B. Frost; Gorgon Thomson; J. McL. Ralston; H. French; E. G. Dalziel; F. A. Fraser, and Sir Luke Fildes; printed from the original woodblocks engraved for "The Household Edition.". New York: Chapman and Hall, 1908. Copy in the Robarts Library, University of Toronto.
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Last modified 1 April 2014