Uncaptioned Tailpiece, final illustration by Thomas Nast (1873), Chapter LVII, 232.

Bibliographical Note

The tailpiece appears in the American Household Edition of Dickens's The Posthumous Papers of The Pickwick Club, as the volume's final illustration. This plate concludes for the closing chapters in what was originally the November 1837 "double" number (Parts 19 and 20 as one: Chapters 53-57). Nast's tailpiece realizes the final moments in the text of Chapter LVII, "In which the Pickwick Club is finally dissolved, and Everything concluded to the satisfaction of Everybody," 332. Wood-engraving, occupying about a third of the page: 3 inches high by 3 ½ inches wide (7.5 cm high by 8.5 cm wide), vignetted; referencing text on the same page, when the townspeople of Dulwich doff their hats in respect as Pickwick passes; descriptive headline: "Settled Down" (331). New York: Harper & Bros., Franklin Square, 1873. VI.

Passage Illustrated: Wandering around Dulwich, Shadowed by Sam

Mr. Pickwick is somewhat infirm now; but he retains all his former juvenility of spirit, and may still be frequently seen, contemplating the pictures in the Dulwich Gallery, or enjoying a walk about the pleasant neighbourhood on a fine day. He is known by all the poor people about, who never fail to take their hats off, as he passes, with great respect. The children idolise him, and so indeed does the whole neighbourhood. Every year he repairs to a large family merry-making at Mr. Wardle’s; on this, as on all other occasions, he is invariably attended by the faithful Sam, between whom and his master there exists a steady and reciprocal attachment which nothing but death will terminate. [Chapter LVII, pp. 331-332]

Relevant Chapman & Hall (1836) and Household Edition (1874) illustrations

Left: The concluding illustration for the 1874 Household Edition,in which Dickens and Phiz resolve the romantic plot involving Nathaniel Winkle and Arabella Allen: The words were scarcely out of the old gentleman's lips, when footsteps were heard ascending the stairs. Right: Phiz's original November 1837 steel-engraving, winding up the novel with a rollicking scene that does involve Pickwick in sedate seclusion, Mr. Weller and his friends drinking to Mr. Pell. [Click on the images to enlarge them.]

Other artists who illustrated this work, 1836-74

Related Material

Scanned image, colour correction, sizing, caption, and commentary 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.]


Dickens, Charles. Pickwick Papers. Illustrated by Robert Seymour and Hablot Knight Browne. London: Chapman & Hall, 1836-37.

_______. The Posthumous Papers of the Pickwick Club. The Household Edition. 16 vols. Illustrated by Thomas Nast. New York: Harper and Brothers, 1873. VI.

_______. Pickwick Papers. Illustrated by Hablot Knight Browne ('Phiz'). The Household Edition. 22 vols. London: Chapman and Hall, 1874. VI.

Created 29 July 2019

Last modified 7 June 2020