They almost ran against Bradley Headstone (p. 231) — James Mahoney's fortieth illustration for Charles Dickens's Our Mutual Friend, Household Edition (New York), 1875. Wood-engraving by the Dalziels, 9.4 cm high x 13.4 cm wide. The Chapman and Hall woodcut for tenth chapter, "Scouts Out," in the third book, "A Long Lane," has a much longer caption than that in the Harper and Brothers volume, published that same year in New York: "And you see, as I was saying, Mortimer," remarked Eugene aloud with the utmost coolness, as though there were no one within hearing but themselves, "and you see, as I was saying — undergoing grinding torments" — Book 3, chap. x. Otherwise, the wood-engraving depicting the young lawyers about to enter a passageway out of which the school-master is walking briskly is identical in both volumes, suggesting that the Dalziels produced two copies of each woodblock engraving from Mahoney's original line-drawings. This is yet another of those illustrations possessing a different caption in the Chapman and Hall and Harper and Brothers versions of the same book, so that, although the American publisher must have received a list of illustrations, the firm's editor chose occasionally to deviate from the given wording and did not give such a list at the beginning of the volume. Two further examples are Witnessing the Agreement and Mr. and Mrs. Lammle, both of which also have much longer captions in the London text. For further differences, including the London and New York volumes having entirely different frontispieces, see The differences between the British and American printings of Mahoney's illustrations for Dickens's Our Mutual Friend.

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.]

Passage Illustrated

At last, far on in the third hour of the pleasures of the chase, when he had brought the poor dogging wretch round again into the City, [Eugene] twisted Mortimer up a few dark entries, twisted him into a little square court, twisted him sharp round again, and they almost ran against Bradley Headstone.

"And you see, as I was saying, Mortimer," remarked Eugene aloud with the utmostcoolness, as though there were no one within hearing by themselves: "and you see, as I was saying — undergoing grinding torments."

It was not too strong a phrase for the occasion. Looking like the hunted and not the hunter, baffled, worn, with the exhaustion of deferred hope and consuming hate and anger in his face, white-lipped, wild-eyed, draggle-haired, seamed with jealousy and anger, and torturing himself with the conviction that he showed it all and they exulted in it, he went by them in the dark, like a haggard head suspended in the air: so completely did the force of his expression cancel his figure.

Mortimer Lightwood was not an extraordinarily impressible man, but this face impressed him. — Book Three, "A Long Lane"; Chapter 10, "Scouts Out," p. 232.


Despite the fact that it was his visual antecedent, the original edition illustrated by Marcus Stone for the May 1865 number has a picture of "Mr. Dolls," Jenny Wren's father, disgustingly drunk and cadging three pennyworths of rum from the attorneys' in Three-Penn'orth Rum, which also offers Stone's interpretation of Mortimer Lightwood (left) and Eugene Wrayburn (right) in their rooms in The Inner Temple, as in Forming the Domestic Virtues (November 1864). Although Mahoney took Stone's lawyers as his models, he seems to have dissatisfied with Stone's version of Bradley Headstone, whom he supplies in the present illustration with a much more malevolent look, giving the reader a clearer image of the schoolmaster's face than in the Stone sequence. Here, Headstone has been led a merry chase by Wrayburn, who is well aware that the jealous schoolmaster has been following him.

Bradley Headstone, a bundle of nerves, appears paired with his self-centred acolyte, Charlie Hexam, in the 1867 Diamond Edition by Sol Eytinge, Jr., the second among American illustrators of Our Mutual Friend, but this version of the villainous Headstone seems far more deranged and volatile then Stone's. Eytinge also provides a convincing portrait of the lawyers, Wrayburn and Lightwood — the figure of Lightwood with muttonchops clearly based on the lawyer in the Stone original. Unfortunately, neither Felix Octavius Carr Darley nor John Gilbert offered studies of any of these characters in the Sheldon and Company (New York) Household Edition's 1866 four frontispieces for the novel.

Bradley Headstone in the original and later editions, 1865-1875

Left: Marcus Stone's September 1865 serial illustration of the psychologically damaged Headstone after his attack on Wrayburn, Better to be Abel than Cain.​Centre: Sol Eytinge, Junior's study of the​manic school-master and his self-centred pupil, Bradley Headstone and Charley [sic] Hexam (1867). Right: Eytinge's well-dressed men-about-town, the dapper attorneys Wrayburn and Lightwood. [Click on images to enlarge them.]

Above: Marcus Stone's interpretation of ​the scene in which Charlie Hexam and Bradley Headstone visit the lawyers in their rooms at the Middle Temple, Forming the domestic Virtues (Part 7, November 1864). [Click on the image to enlarge it.]


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Last modified 1 January 2016