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Mr. Caudle and His Mother-in-Law," Initial letter "I" —; initial-letter vignette for "The Eleventh Lecture" in Mrs. Caudle's Curtain Lectures, first published in the Punch; or, The London Charivari number for 5 April 1845; instalment, "Mrs. Caudle suggests that her dear mother should 'Come and live with them'," p. 49. Wood-engraving 6.4 x 5.1 cm, framed; twenty-second illustration in the third edition. Richard Doyle in the original periodical publication had provided an illustration of Mrs. Caudle's "dear mother" in which a sour-faced, older woman is arriving by hansom cab, with the driver carrying a heavy trunk. The Keene vignette offers a more benign interpretation of her character. Keene's mother-in-law leans on Mr. Caudle's arm as he carries her bag —; but looks somewhat dubious about the outing as his wife serenely brings up the rear. In fact, neither illustrator has realised a scene in the lecture, for Job Caudle refuses to grant his wife's request to have her mother live with them.

Passage Illustrated

"Wasn't dear mother so happy with us to-night? Now, you needn't go to sleep so suddenly. I say, wasn't she so happy? You don't know? How can you say you don't know? You must have seen it. But she is always happier here than anywhere else. Ha! what a temper that dear soul has! I call it a temper of satin; it is so smooth, so easy, and so soft. Nothing puts her out of the way. And then, if you only knew how she takes your part, Caudle! I'm sure, if you had been her own son ten times over, she couldn't be fonder of you. Don't you think so, Caudle? Eh, love? Now, do answer. ["The Eleventh Lecture. —; Mrs. Caudle suggests that her dear mother should 'Come and live with them'," pp. 49-50]

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.]


Jerrold, Douglas. Mrs. Caudle's Curtain Lectures, as Suffered by the late Job Caudle.​Edited from the Original MSS. by Douglas Jerrold. With a frontispiece by Leech, and as motto on the title-page, "Then, Pistol, lay thy head in Fury's lap. —; Shakespeare."​ London: Punch​ Office; Bradbury​and Evans,​ 1846.

Jerrold, Douglas. Mrs. Caudle's Curtain Lectures . Illustrated by John Leach and Richard Doyle. London: Bradbury and Evans, 1856.

Jerrold, Douglas. Mrs. Caudle's Curtain Lectures. Illustrated by Charles Keene. London: Bradbury and Evans, 1866.

Last modified 15 November 2017