Fictional Characters - Dickens
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This list is reproduced with kind permission from David Perdue's Charles Dickens Page. Excellent resource, check it out.
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A convict who Pip helps in the marshes after his escape from the prison ship. He is recaptured and transported to Australia where he gains a fortune which he secretly uses to increase Pip's "expectations". He secretly returns to England as Provis and confronts Pip with the secret source of his good fortune. Magwitch is recaptured and dies before he can be executed. Magwitch is also the father of Estella.
Ward of John Jarndyce, friend of Esther Summerson, cousin of Richard Carstone, who she marries and is soon widowed as Richard's health fails in the wake of the unhappy conclusion of the Chancery suit.
Wife of Mrs Clennam's clerk who sees the evil doings of the house in dreams.
Mother of Oliver, whom she has out of wedlock with Edwin Leeford. Agnes is also the sister of Rose Maylie.
Childhood friend of David Copperfield and daughter of Betsy Trotwood's lawyer. Becomes David's wife after the death of Dora.
City magistrate who is blind to the plight of the poor. Vows to "put down" any nonsense claimed by the poor, such as starvation, illness, and suicide.
Ward of Dr. Jeddler who loves the doctor's youngest daughter, Marion. Marion runs away that her sister, Grace, may marry Alfred. Alfred becomes a doctor for the poor.
A wandering rascal who befriends Mr Pickwick and accompanies the group to the Wardle home at Dingley Dell. He entices Miss Rachel to elope with him and is run down and bought off by Rachel's brother. Pickwick later finds a penitent Jingle in the Fleet Prison, pays his debt, and sends him and his servant, Job Trotter, off to Demerara, an area of Guyana, to turn over a new leaf.
Husband of Madame Mantalini. a shiftless idler who lives by flattering his older wife until he has gone through all of her money. Ends up working for a laundress who has bailed him out of debtors' prison.
Alice (alias Marwood) Brown. Daughter of Good Mrs Brown and cousin of Edith Granger.
A young surgeon who falls in love with Esther Summerson before going away as ship's doctor to India. On his return to England he learns that Esther is engaged to John Jarndyce. When Jarndyce learns that Esther is in love with Woodcourt he releases her to marry him.
Daughter of William Dorrit, born in the Marshalsea debtor's prison. She works for Mrs Clennam and befriends Arthur. Her father inherits a fortune and they leave the prison and travel abroad. After her father's death she discovers that the fortune has been lost in a banking scam. She nurses Arthur in the Marshalsea when his fortune is lost in the same banking scam. The novel ends with the marriage of Arthur and Amy at St. Georges Church, next to the prison, the same church where she was christened.
Hamilton and Anastasia Veneering. High society couple at whose frequent dinner parties the story of John Harmon is discovered.
A stout lady who keeps a shop in the general line to whom Trotty owes some small debts. In Trotty's dream she marries Tugby and is Meg's landlady.
Brother of old Martin Chuzzlewit and father of Jonas Chuzzlewit. Greedy and tight-fisted business man who breeds these same qualities into his son, Jonas, who tries to poison him for his trouble.
Black-eyed beauty, sister of Benjamin Allen. Marries Nathaniel Winkle.
Returns to England from abroad where he has spent years with his father in the family business. On his father's death he falls out with his mother and gives up his share of the family business. He befriends Amy Dorrit at the Marshalsea and becomes business partner to Daniel Doyce. After losing everything in a banking scam by Merdle he is himself imprisoned in the Marshalsea. His health fails and Amy cares for him in the prison. The novel ends with Arthur and Amy's marriage.
Old moneylender who develops a scheme, along with fellow usurer, Ralph Nickleby, to get Walter Bray consent to give his daughter, Madeline's, hand for the forgiveness of debts to Gride and Ralph. Gride's plan is undone when Bray dies on the morning of the wedding and his old housekeeper, Peg Sliderskew, jealous of the young wife, steals documents that reveal his scheme. Gride is murdered by burglars before he can be prosecuted.
Miss Havisham's drunken brother who plots with Compeyson to gain his sister's fortune.
A member of the Pickwick club and party to the adventures of Pickwick's travels. Snodgrass fancies himself a poet, but has written no poetry. He falls in love with Emily Wardle and marries her at the end of the story.
Pantomimist in Crummles troupe, jealous of the attention paid to the 'infant phenomenon', he believes the crowds would be better entertained by his specialty: the Highland Fling.
A servant boy hired by Pip. Pip has such a hard time finding things to keep him busy "that I sometimes sent him to Hyde Park Corner to see what o'clock it was."
Musical, military family headed by Matthew, an old army friend of George Rouncewell. Bagnet's wife, the old girl, knows Matthew so well that he always calls upon her to supply his opinion. The Bagnet children: Quebec, Malta, and Woolwich are named for the military bases where the family have been stationed. Matthew is guarantor to George's loan from Smallweed, when Smallweed calls in the debt George is forced to deliver a document Smallweed needs to help lawyer Tulkinghorn learn Lady Dedlock's secret.
A carrier between Blunderstone and Yarmouth. He marries Clara Peggotty. Quote: Barkis is willin'
Family that controls the Circumlocution Office, where everything goes round in circles, and nothing ever gets done. Includes Lord Decimus Tite Barnacle, his wife, Lady Jemima Bilberry, nephew Tite Barnacle, and his son Clarence Barnacle (Barnacle Junior).
Doctor, cousin of Kenge, to whom Richard Carstone is apprenticed. Badger's wife Laura talks incessantly about her two former husbands, Capt Swosser and Professor Dingo.
Clerk to Hiram Grewgious who writes an unproduced tragedy, The Thorn of Anxiety. Grewgious admits that Bazzard has a strange power over him.
Scrooge's former fiancee whom he had forgotten until reminded by the Ghost of Christmas Past.
Girl specified in old Harmon's will that his son John should marry in order to gain his inheritance. When John disappears and is presumed drowned she is left " a widow without ever being married". She leaves her home and goes to live with the Boffins where she is wooed by John Rokesmith, alias of John Harmon. She refuses him at first but later falls in love with him and they marry. She finds out later that he is really John Harmon and that they have gained his inheritance.
Medical student, brother of Arabella, and drinking buddy of Bob Sawyer.
Street-wise servant boy at Todger's Boarding House. Later goes to work for Tigg Montigue and is nearly killed in a coach accident.
Manservant of Dr. Jeddler. He later marries Clemency Newcome and together they run the comfortable Nutmeg-Grater and Thimble Inn.
Pip's fellow student at Matthew Pocket's. He marries Estella for her money and abuses her. He is killed when kicked by a horse that he has mistreated.
Blind daughter of poor toymaker, Caleb Plummer. To help ease Bertha's way Caleb has made her believe that the unfeeling Tackleton is their kind friend and the unknowing Bertha falls in love with him.
Prostitute and friend of Nancy. Goes mad after identifying Nancy's body.
Day nurse and friend of Mrs Gamp. "Mrs Prig was of the Gamp build, but not so fat; and her voice was deeper and more like a man's. She had also a beard." Betsy and Mrs Gamp later have a falling out, Betsy questioning the existance of Gamp's imaginary friend Mrs Harris.
David Copperfield's great aunt. David runs away from London, when he is installed at Murdstone and Grinby's warehouse, and goes to Dover to live with Betsy. She helps David get a start in life and, when she loses her fortune, goes to London to live with David. David describes her as "A tall, hard-featured lady, but by no means ill-looking. There was an inflexibility in her face, in her voice, in her gait and carriage, amply sufficient to account for the effect she had made upon a gentle creature like my mother; but her features were rather handsome than otherwise, though unbending and austere". Dickens' friend and biographer John Forster called Betsy "a gnarled and knotted piece of female timber, sound to the core".
Mr Wopsle's great aunt's granddaughter. She loves Pip but he ignores her as his fortunes improve. When Pip realizes that he loves her too she has married Joe Gargery.
A vicious thief working on the fringes of Fagin's band of pickpockets. He uses Oliver in an attempt to burglarize the Brownlow home. When Nancy tries to help Oliver she is found out by Fagin who relates the information to Sikes who murders Nancy. While fleeing police after the murder he accidentally hangs himself.
A student in Gradgrind's school of hard facts. Later a light porter in Bounderby's bank.
Bow Street Runner (London Policemen) who, along with Duff, investigates the attempted robbery of the Maylie home.
Longsuffering clerk of Ebenezer Scrooge. Bob endures Scrooge's mistreatment until Scrooge, reformed by the visit of the three spirits, raises Bob's salary and vows to help his struggling family.
Medical student, and drinking buddy of Benjamin Allen.
A school teacher and master of the boys department of a school on the borders of Kent and Surrey. Charley Hexam becomes Headstone's pupil and Bradley becomes obsessed with Charley's sister Lizzie. Lizzie wants nothing to do with him and he becomes jealous of Eugene Wrayburn who also has eyes for Lizzie. He attempts to murder Wrayburn and believes he has been successful. Rogue Riderhood discovers the supposed murder and attempts to blackmail Headstone. In a later confrontation Riderhood and Headstone are both drowned.
Adopts Oliver after he is charged with pickpocketing. He later establishes Oliver's true identity.
Detective in charge of finding Tulkinghorn's murderer. After Lady Dedlock's disappearance Sir Leicester hires Bucket to find her. He later uncovers the will that is instrumental in clearing up the Jarndyce and Jarndyce chancery case.
Beadle at the workhouse where Oliver is born. He mistreats the residents in his care and becomes the symbol of Dickens' distaste for the workhouse system. Marries Mrs Corney and later is disgraced and becomes a resident in the same workhouse.
Poor toymaker who works for the hard-hearted Tackleton. Acting as the eyes of his blind daughter, Bertha, he tenderly embellishes their humble home and ragged clothes and makes her believe that the unfeeling Tackleton is their friend.
Minor canon of Cloisterham Cathedral. "Mr Crisparkle, Minor Canon, early riser, musical, classical, cheerful, kind, good-natured, social, contented, and boy-like". He takes Neville Landless as a pupil and helps Neville flee to London when suspicion is cast on him for the disappearance of Edwin Drood.
Seafaring friend of Sol Gills, whose shop he cares for when Sol goes in search of his lost nephew, Walter Gay. Quote: When found, make a note of. Dickens describes Captain Cuttle as "a gentleman in a wide suit of blue, with a hook instead of a hand attached to his right wrist; very bushy black eyebrows; and a thick stick in his left hand, covered all over (like his nose) with knobs. He wore a loose black silk handkerchief round his neck, and such a very large coarse shirt collar, that it looked like a small sail".
Landlord of the National Hotel where Mark and Martin stay on their way to and from Eden.
Neglected daughter of Mrs Jellyby and her personal secretary ("I'm pen and ink to ma"). Caddy leaves home and marries Prince Turveydrop.
Seth Pecksniff's older daughter and sister of Mercy. Haughty and ill-tempered, without her younger sister's playful nature. She is infuriated when passed over for marriage by Jonas Chuzzlewith who chooses her sister. She later promises herself to Mr Moddle, who leaves her at the alter. Charity has a disposition "which was then observed to be of a sharp and acid quality, as though an extra lemon (figuratively speaking) had been squeezed into the nectar of her disposition, and had rather damaged its flavour."
Member of Fagin's band of thieves. He mends his ways after Fagin is captured.
Son of Marquis St. Evremonde. He is tried for treason in London and is acquitted due to his resemblance to Sydney Carton. He marries Lucie Manette, daughter of Dr. Manette. He returns to Paris to help a friend imprisoned there and is arrested by the revolutionaries. His life is saved when look-alike Carton takes his place on the guillotine.
Assistant Schoolmaster at Salem House Academy attended by David Copperfield. David befriends Mell and finds that Mell's mother lives in an almshouse which he innocently tells Steerforth. Steerforth uses this information to discredit Mell and have him dismissed. Mell later emigrates to Australia and becomes headmaster at Colonial Salem House Grammar School in Port Middlebay.
Daughter of sheriff's officer Neckett. When her father dies Charley cares for her two younger siblings: Emma and Tom. Charley becomes Esther Summerson's maid, nursing Esther through smallpox. She later marries a miller.
Charles and Edwin (Ned). Benevolent businessmen who employ and befriend Nicholas Nickleby and his family. Frank Cheeryble, who marries Kate Nickleby, is their nephew.
Nephew of old Martin Chuzzlewit who works with Montigue Tigg to try to squeeze money from the family. Later a London police officer.
Father of Flora Finching and landlord who gouges the residents of Bleeding Heart Yard through his collector, Pancks. Pancks later exposes Casby by cutting his long gray hair in front of the residents of Bleeding Heart Yard.
Devoted old clerk of Anthony Chuzzlewit. "He looked as if he had been put away and forgotten half a century before, and somebody had just found him in a lumber-closet."
Herbert Pocket's fiancee, she cares for her invalid father, Old Bill Barley, in a waterside house at Mill Pond Bank where Magwitch is hidden. After her father's death she marries Herbert.
Mother of David Copperfield. A widow when David is born, she later is lured into marriage by Edward Murdstone, who destroys her spirit and she dies along with her newborn son while David is away at school.
David's devoted nurse and sister to Daniel Peggotty. After the death of David's mother she is discharged and marries Barkis. When Barkis dies she goes to live with David and Betsy Trotwood. David comically describes getting a hug from Peggotty: "She laid aside her work (which was a stocking of her own), and opening her arms wide, took my curly head within them, and gave it a good squeeze. I know it was a good squeeze, because, being very plump, whenever she made any little exertion after she was dressed, some of the buttons on the back of her gown flew off. And I recollect two bursting to the opposite side of the parlour, while she was hugging me".
Shipping merchant from whom Pip secretly buys a partnership for Herbert. After Pip loses his fortune he is also employed in the firm.
Lovable, awkward, and clumsy servant of Dr. Jeddler. She later marries Benjamin Britain and together they run the comfortable Nutmeg-Grater and Thimble Inn.
Proprietors of a traveling Punch and Judy show that Nell and her grandfather meet on their travels through the English countryside.
Editor of the New York Rowdy Journal. Diver meets Mark and Martin onboard the Screw and directs them to Pawkins boarding house.
Con man who deceives Miss Havisham, with the help of Miss Havisham's brother Arthur, to get her money with a promise of marriage, and then leaves her at the altar. He is an accomplice of Magwitch in the original prison break. He later exposes Magwitch and accidentally drowns when Magwitch is recaptured.
Severe headmaster of Salem House Academy where David first goes to school. He was based on William Jones, headmaster of Wellington Academy which Dickens attended from 1825-1827.
Inventor of an unspecified mechanical wonder which he is unable to get a patent for in the Circumlocution Office. He partners with Arthur Clennam who loses the firm's money in the Merdle scandal. Doyce later sells the invention abroad and returns to liberate Arthur from the Marshalsea.
Crotchety fisherman brother of Clare. He lives in an overturned boat on the beach at Yarmouth with Emily, Ham, and Mrs Gummidge. When Emily abandons them to elope with Steerforth, Daniel vows to find her. Steerforth later leaves Emily and she is re-united with Daniel. At the end of the novel Daniel, Emily, and Mrs Gummidge resettle in Australia.
An evil dwarf who lends money to Nell's grandfather who gambles it away and flees London with Nell in an attempt to avoid Quilp. Quilp attempts to find the pair as they travel through the country. Later Quilp is pursued by the police and, lost in the fog, drowns in the Thames.
Pawnbroker (Crimp) and later partner with Tigg Montigue in the Anglo-Bengalee Disinterested Loan and Life Assurance Company. After Montigue is murdered he flees the country with the company's money.
Deputy (Winks) is a boy hired by Durdles to throw stones at him when he is wandering drunk at night. "Sometimes the stones hit him, and sometimes they miss him, but Durdles seems indifferent to either fortune. The hideous small boy, on the contrary, whenever he hits Durdles, blows a whistle of triumph through a jagged gap, convenient for the purpose, in the front of his mouth, where half his teeth are wanting; and whenever he misses him, yelps out 'Mulled agin!' and tries to atone for the failure by taking a more correct and vicious aim". Deputy resides at the Traveler's Twopenny.
Mysterious visitor to Cloisterham whose "white head was unusually large, and his shock of white hair was unusually thick and ample". Datchery keeps an eye on John Jasper after the disappearance of Edwin Drood. The true identity of Datchery is one of the most contested points of the uncompleted mystery. It is widely believed that Datchery is one of the characters in the book in disguise, most likely candidates include Neville, Bazzard, Tartar, Helena, or even Edwin Drood himself.
Friend of Fred Trent who has designs to marry Fred's sister Nell Trent but is encouraged to wait until Nell has inherited her grandfather's money. When Nell and her grandfather leave London Swiveller is befriended by Quilp who helps him gain employment with the Brasses. While at the Brasses he meets their little half-starved servant the Marchioness. He becomes aware of the Brasses villainy and, with the Marchioness' help, exposes a plot to frame Kit Nubbles. Swiveller later inherits money from his aunt, puts the Marchioness through school, and later marries her.
Sharp dealing lawyers who dupe Mrs Bardell into bringing a breach of promise to marry suit against Samuel Pickwick.
Joe Gargary's journeyman blacksmith, he quarrels with Mrs Joe and later attacks her leaving her with injuries of which she later dies. He falls in with Compeyson and tries to murder Pip.
Daughter of Gabriel and Martha, friend of Emma Haredale, loved by Joe Willet who she eventually marries.
Daughter of David's employer, Francis. She and David are married and David tries to teach her to keep house, but she has no head for it. She becomes ill with an unspecified illness and dies young. Dickens based Dora on Maria Beadnell, his first love.
A prisoner in the Bastille in Paris for eighteen years. He is released and accompanies his daughter, Lucie, and Jarvis Lorry to England. He returns to Paris after the outbreak of the revolution and, as a former prisoner, is able to secure Darnay's release from the revolutionaries. However, a statement written during Manette's long incarceration in the Bastille is later discovered and incriminates Darnay's family. Darnay is again imprisoned and later escapes when Sydney Carton takes his place.
Country doctor whose view of life is altered by the sacrifices made by his youngest daughter, Marion, for her sister, Grace.
Headmaster of the school in Brighton where Paul Dombey Jr attends. Blimber is assisted at the school by his wife and daughter Cornelia. Dickens describes Blimber as "a portly gentleman in a suit of black, with strings at the knees, and stockings below them. He had a bald head, highly polished; a deep voice; and a chin so very double, that it was a wonder how he ever managed to shave into the creases.
Doctor at the Marshalsea prison who delivers Amy Dorrit, described as 'amazingly shabby, in a torn and darned rough-weather sea-jacket, out at elbows and eminently short of buttons (he had been in his time the experienced surgeon carried by a passenger ship), the dirtiest white trousers conceivable by mortal man, carpet slippers, and no visible linen.
Medical officer for the Anglo-Bengalee Disinterested Loan and Life Assurance Company. Dr Jobling takes the company's money but distances himself from its Board.
Impetuous doctor who treats Oliver and Rose in illness. A friend of the Maylie family.
Surgeon of the 97th, almost duels Nathaniel Winkle whom he mistakes for Alfred Jingle.
Bow Street Runner (London Policemen) who, along with Blathers, investigates the attempted robbery of the Maylie home.
Drunken stonemason who engraves tombstones for Cloisterham Cathedral. John Jasper is interested in Durdles ability to tap on the tombs and discover their contents. Durdles hires Deputy to throw stones at him when he catches him wandering about drunk at night. "No man is better known in Cloisterham. He is the chartered libertine of the place. Fame trumpets him a wonderful workman - which, for aught that anybody knows, he may be (as he never works); and a wonderful sot - which everybody knows he is".
Probably Dickens' best known character, the miserly Scrooge, with his familiar cry of "Bah, Humbug!", is visited by the ghost of his former partner, Jacob Marley, who sends three more spirits in hopes of reforming Scrooge's heartless and penny-pinching ways.
Paul Dombey's second wife is the widow of Colonel Granger and the daughter of Mr's Skewton. She marries Dombey but does not love him. She later elopes with Carker, a manager at Dombey's firm, to punish her husband.
Ailing student at the university where Redlaw teaches chemistry. He is adversely effected by Redlaw's gift of forgetting past sorrows and is later restored by his old nurse, Milly Swidger.
Son of Mrs Merdle by a former marriage. A man of limited talents, he offers marriage to 'all manner of undesirable young ladies' finally marries Fanny Dorrit. Edmund and Fanny lose all in the Merdle banking scam.
Villainous son of Edwin and half-brother of Oliver Twist who plots with Fagin to corrupt Oliver, in which case Leeford will inherit all of their father's property. After the plan is foiled Leeford is forced to emigrate to America where he dies in prison.
Son of John, eventually overcomes the opposition of his father and her uncle and marries Emma Haredale. The couple relocate to the West Indies.
Second husband of Clara Copperfield whom David dislikes. He is a stern disciplinarian and sends David off to Salem House School and later consigns him to the warehouse of Murdstone and Grinby.
Son of Caleb and sister to Bertha. Edward was the former lover of May Fielding, went away to sea, and was supposed dead. With the help of Mary Peerybingle, he is reunited with May on the day she is supposed to marry Tackleton.
Ne'er do well brother of Amy Dorrit.
Father of Oliver, whom he has fathered out of wedlock with Agnes Fleming. Also father of Edward (Monks) from a previous marriage. Edwin has died before the story begins.
Member of Congress Martin meets on the steamboat when leaving Eden. Pogram has inherited the congressional talent for speechifying much, and saying little.
Mr Peggotty's niece and David's childhood friend. She is later engaged to Ham but is lured away by the charms of David's friend Steerforth. Mr Peggotty is heartbroken and searches for her, finally finding her when Steerforth tires of her and she leaves him. She later emigrates to Australia with her uncle, Mr Peggotty.
Daughter of the murdered Reuben and niece of Geoffrey. She eventually marries Edward Chester
Long suffering wife of Mr Micawber whom she swears she will never leave despite his financial difficulties. David describes her as "a thin and faded lady, not at all young, with a baby at her breast. This baby was one of twins; and I may remark here that I hardly ever, in all my experience of the family, saw both the twins detached from Mrs Micawber at the same time. One of them was always taking refreshment".
Twin brother of Jeremiah with whom he intrigues against Mrs Clennam.
Husband of Madame Defarge and keeper of a wine shop in Paris. He is a leader among the revolutionaries.
Adopted as a child by Miss Havisham who teaches her to break men's hearts as revenge for Compeyson having left Miss Havisham at the altar years before. Pip meets Estella at Satis House and falls in love with her but she is cruel to him. Pip goes to London and becomes a gentleman and continues to adore Estella but she warns him that she is incapable of love. She later marries Bentley Drummle who mistreats her and she leaves him. Drummle dies and Estella and Pip meet two years later and vow to remain together. Estella is the daughter of Magwitch and Jagger's maid Molly.
Principal character in the story. She is brought up an orphan by her aunt, Miss Barbery. On her aunt's death she is adopted by John Jarndyce and becomes companions to his wards, Ada Clare and Richard Carstone. Later in the story it is revealed that Esther is the illegitimate daughter of Captain Hawdon and Lady Dedlock. John Jarndyce falls in love with her and asked her to marry him. She consents out of respect for Jarndyce but during the engagement she falls in love with Allan Woodcourt. When Jarndyce learns of her feelings for Allan he releases her from the engagement and she marries Woodcourt.
Lawyer and friend of Mortimer Lightwood. He becomes interested in the Harmon case and meets Lizzie Hexam and falls in love with her. She loves him also but tries to distance herself from him because they come from different classes of society. Lizzie leaves London to get away from Bradley Headstone, the school teacher who also loves her, and Wrayburn. Eugene finds her and is followed by Headstone who attempts to murder him. Lizzie nurses Wrayburn back to health and they are married.
A crafty old Jew who runs a thieve's school near Field Lane in Saffron Hill. Oliver falls in with Fagin's band when he runs away from the workhouse. When Fagin attempts to help Monks destroy Oliver's reputation he is arrested and executed at Newgate. Fagin was based on real-life Jewish fence (receiver of stolen property), Ikey Soloman (1758-1850).
Scrooge's sister, mother of his nephew Fred. She has died before the story begins but lives again in the 'shadows' shown to Scrooge by the Ghost of Christmas Past. She is based on Dickens' own sister Fanny who died of consumption at age 38.
First wife of Paul Dombey and mother of Florence and Paul Jr. at whose birth she dies.
Sister of Amy. A dancer with social aspirations, Fanny marries Edmund Sparkler, Step-son of Mr Merdle. Fanny and Sparkler lose everything in the Merdle banking scam.
Daughter of Wackford Squeers. Described as "not tall like her mother, but short like her father; from the former she inherited a voice of harsh quality; from the latter a remarkable expression of the right eye, something akin to having none at all". When Nicholas Nickleby becomes her fathers assistant she falls madly in love with him, telling her friend Matilda Price that they are practically engaged. Nicholas wants nothing to do with her.
Scrooge was apprenticed to 'Old Fezziwig' after he left school. Scrooge visits his old employer with the Ghost of Christmas Past and is reminded of what a kind, generous man he was.
Friend of Alderman Cute, Filer makes Trotty feel guilty over his meager meal of tripe.
One of Mrs Pocket's maids (along with Millers) who helps control the Pocket's 'tumbled up' children.
Neglected daughter of Paul Dombey and sister of little Paul whom she nurses in his illness. She marries Walter Gay and is eventually reconciled with her father.
Daughter of Casby and former sweetheart of Arthur Clennam who reappears 20 years later and "grown to be very broad, and short of breath". Dickens modeled the character of Flora after his own early sweetheart, Maria Beadnell, who reappears later in Dickens life not quite the way he remembered her.
Proctor at Doctor's Commons where David is apprenticed and father of Dora. David says of him: "He was a little light-haired gentleman, with undeniable boots, and the stiffest of white cravats and shirt-collars. He was buttoned up, mighty trim and tight, and must have taken a great deal of pains with his whiskers, which were accurately curled".
Nephew of the Cheeryble brothers who marries Kate Nickleby.
Brother of William, Uncle of Fanny, Edward, and Amy. He plays clarionet in a small-time theatre. He is due an inheritance but the knowledge is kept from him by the intrigues of Mrs Clennam.
Nell's brother, a gambler, is interested in his grandfather's money through his friend Dick Swiveller.
Honest locksmith and owner of the Golden Key where Simon Tappertit is apprenticed. Father of Dolly and long-suffering husband of Martha. He is a friend of Barnaby's mother and, after the Gordon riots, helps clear Barnaby's name.
Waterman, father of Lizzie, who plies the Thames looking for dead bodies. He finds a body thought to be John Harmon, the central character in the story.
Lord George Gordon's hypocritical secretary. He urges the rioters to exact revenge on Geoffrey Haredale who had exposed his treacherous ways. He abandons Lord Gordon when the riots are suppressed by soldiers and becomes a government spy. He later poisons himself.
Member of the Eden Land Corporation who introduces Martin to Scadder. Like many others Martin Meets in America the General is considered "one of the most remarkable men in the country".
Introduced to Martin Chuzzlewit in America by the Norris family. While condemning the class system in Europe he is so outraged to be considered a fellow passenger to America with Martin, who made the trip in steerage, that "he almost laid his hand upon his sword".
Brother of the murdered Reuben and uncle of Emma. Suspected of being responsible for the murder of his brother, he spends his life in pursuit of the real killer. A Catholic, his house is burned in the Gordon Riots. He fights a duel with Sir John Chester, kills him, and leaves the country.
Son of the Dedlock's housekeeper Mrs Rouncewell. George ran away to join the army and cut himself off from his mother. After leaving the army George buys a shooting gallery in London with money borrowed from Smallweed. Smallweed pressures George to give over examples of Capt Hawdon's handwriting in order to help Tulkinghorn learn Lady Dedlock's secret. George is charged with the murder of Tulkinghorn by Bucket. Later George is exonerated of the crime and is reunited with his mother.
Shows Scrooge the demise of Tiny Tim and of himself, leading to Scrooge's reformation.
Shows Scrooge his lonely and difficult childhood and gradual decline into the miser he will become.
Shows Scrooge the joy that Christmas brings, both at the poor household of the Cratchits and at the home of his nephew Fred.
An ugly old rag and bone vendor and mother of Alice Marwood (Brown). She kidnaps Florence Dombey and steals her clothes. Later she helps Dombey find out where Carker and Edith have eloped to. Dickens describes Good Mrs Brown as a "very ugly old woman, with red rims round her eyes, and a mouth that mumbled and chattered of itself when she was not speaking".
Older daughter of Dr. Jeddler. She is the recipient of the sacrifice of her younger sister Marion, who runs away that Grace may marry her beau Alfred Heathfield.
Guardian of Rosa Bud. He is upset at John Jasper's advances to Rosa and finds her lodging in London at an apartment owned by Mr's Billickin. He later investigates the disappearance of Edwin Drood and is suspicious of Jasper. "An angular man with no conversational powers".
Known as the 'Man from Shropshire' and another casualty of Chancery.
Hamilton and Anastasia Veneering. High society couple at whose frequent dinner parties the story of John Harmon is discovered. Hamilton buys his way into Parliament and is later bankrupt and the couple flees to France.
Orphaned nephew of Daniel Peggotty and fiance of Emily. A fisherman and boatbuilder. He drowns trying to rescue Steerforth. "He was a huge, strong fellow of six feet high, broad in proportion, and round-shouldered; but with a simpering boy's face and curly light hair that gave him quite a sheepish look. He was dressed in a canvas jacket, and a pair of such very stiff trousers that they would have stood quite as well alone, without any legs in them. And you couldn't so properly have said he wore a hat, as that he was covered in a-top, like an old building, with something pitchy".
Another of "the most remarkable men in the country" Martin meets in Eden. Chollop enforces the propagation of liberty with a brace of revolving-pistols.
Friend of John Jarndyce who claims he is a mere child who understands nothing of money, and through this smooth act manages to have everyone else pay his way through life. Dickens modeled Skimpole on Leigh Hunt, causing a stir among Hunt and his friends.
Sister to James and John. Harriet lives with John and the two inherit James' fortune and donate it, anonymously, to Mr Dombey. Harriet later marries Mr Morfin.
Son of Mrs Maylie, he marries Rose.
Twin sister of Neville who, as the story ends prematurely, is falling in love with Canon Chrisparkle.
Minor actress at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane and neighbor of Kenwigs and Noggs. She marries Mrs Kenwigs uncle, Mr Lillyvick, but later runs off with a half-pay (retired) captain.
Untalented artist who marries Pet Meagles against her parents wishes. Henry's snobbish mother feigns disappointment at her son's marrying beneath himself. Gowan had earlier jilted Miss Wade.
Pip goes to London to begin his education and meets Herbert, whom he discovers is the "pale young gentleman" with whom he fought with at Miss Havisham's as a child. Pip and Herbert become best friends and share chambers at Barnard's Inn and at the Temple. Herbert helps teach Pip "city manners". Pip helps Herbert become a partner in the firm of Clarriker and Co. which enables Pocket to marry Clara Barley. "What a hopeful disposition you have!" said I, gratefully admiring his cheery ways. "I ought to have," said Herbert, "for I have not much else".
Lady Dedlock's French maid. She is dismissed in favor of Rosa and aids lawyer Tulkinghorn in discovering Lady Dedlock's secret. When Tulkinghorn spurns her she murders him. Hortense is based on Mrs Manning, a murderer whose execution Dickens witnessed in 1849.
Hostler at the Maypole. Joins the rioters in London and is later hanged. Revealed to be the son of Sir John Chester.
Mr Wardle's daughter who marries Trundle.
Seafaring friend of Captain Cuttle whom is always called in times of crisis for advise. The advise given confounds everyone listening except his friend Cuttle, who values it immensely. Bunsby is later trapped into marriage by Mrs MacStinger. Bunsby's ship is the Cautious Clara. Bunsby is described by Dickens as having "one stationary eye in the mahogany face, and one rovolving one, on the principle of some lighthouses".
Also known as the Artful Dodger, he is the most successful and interesting of Fagin's thieves. He shows Oliver the ropes of the pickpocket game and is later captured and sentenced to transportation.
Scrooge's former partner, who died seven Christmas Eves ago. Jacob, in life, was a penny-pinching miser like Scrooge and is suffering for it in the afterlife. His ghost comes to haunt Scrooge hoping to change Scrooge's life and therefore avoid Marley's fate.
Lawyer who serves Miss Havisham and Magwitch. It is through Jaggers that Pip receives the benefits of the great expectations that he assumes are from Miss Havisham but in reality the convict Magwitch is his benefactor.
Opportunistic manager at Dombey and Son. Brother of John and Harriet Carker, he elopes with Dombey's wife and is later killed when struck by a train. Dickens describes Carker as "a gentleman thirty-eight or forty years old, of a florid complexion, and with two unbroken rows of glistening teeth, whose regularity and whiteness were quite distressing. It was impossible to escape the observation of them, for he showed them whenever he spoke; and bore so wide a smile upon his countenance (a smile, however, very rarely, indeed, extending beyond his mouth), that there was something in it like the snarl of a cat".
A Parliamentary candidate visiting Coketown, he befriends Tom Gradgrind in an attempt to seduce his sister, Louisa, who is in an unhappy marriage to Bounderby. As a result of the attempted seduction Louisa runs home to her father and refuses to return to Bounderby and is later disowned by him.
Friend of David at the Salem House school where his engaging charm makes him everyone's favorite. David later runs into him again in London and he accompanies David on a trip to Yarmouth where he charms Emily into eloping with him. They go abroad and Steerforth soon tires of Emily and deserts her. He is later drowned in a shipwreck where Ham Peggotty, from whom Steerforth stole Emily away, dies trying to save him.
Sister of Edward Murdstone who moves in with David and his mother after her marriage to Murdstone. David describes her as "a gloomy-looking lady she was; dark, like her brother, whom she greatly resembled in face and voice; and with very heavy eyebrows, nearly meeting over her large nose. She kept the purse in a very jail of a bag which hung upon her arm by a heavy chain, and shut up like a bite. I had never, at that time, seen such a metallic lady altogether as Miss Murdstone was". She surfaces again in the novel as the "confidential friend" of Dora Spenlow.
A clerk in Tellson's bank who is instrumental in bringing Dr. Manette, who is imprisoned in Paris, back to England. He returns to Paris to look after the bank's interest after the Revolution starts and while there helps Lucie and Charles Darnay, bringing them back to England after Sydney Carton sacrifices his life to save Darnay.
War correspondent for the New York Rowdy Journal, edited by Colonel Diver.
Mrs Jellyby is involved in many causes and charities but neglects her large family. Her eldest daughter, Caddy, marries Prince Turveydrop, the dance instructor. Dickens modeled Mrs Jellyby on Caroline Chisholm.
Brickmaker's wife, befriended by Esther Summerson after Jenny's child dies. Later exchanges coats with Lady Dedlock, throwing Bucket off in his pursuit of Lady Dedlock as she flees following the revealing of her secret.
Crippled doll's dressmaker with whom Lizzie Hexam lives after the death of her father. She helps Lizzie escape London when pursued by Headstone and Wrayburn.
Mrs Clennam's clerk whom her son Arthur relinquishes his share of the family business. He intrigues with his twin brother Ephraim against Mrs Clennam. Husband of Affery.
Messenger for Tellson's Bank who moonlights as a grave robber.
The crossing sweeper. When Jo shows Lady Dedlock the haunts of Captain Hawdon lawyer Tulkinghorn has Jo kept moving from place to place. He befriends Esther Summerson at Bleak House and communicates smallpox to Charlie, and then Esther. Jo later dies at the shooting gallery of George Rouncewell.
Manservant of the rascal Alfred Jingle.
Servant of Mr Wardle, has an amazing ability to fall asleep anytime, unless he's eating.
Blacksmith and friend to Pip, Joe is the husband of Pip's sister, who badly mistreats both Joe and Pip. After his wife's death Joe comes to London and nurses Pip through an illness. Later Joe marries Pip's friend Biddy.
Son of John who resents his fathers treatment of him, he joins the army and loses an arm in the American Revolution, later marries Dolly Varden. The couple become proprietors of the rebuilt Maypole Inn.
Small time Italian smuggler and fellow prisoner with Rigaud as the novel opens. Later employed by Arthur Clennam in Bleeding Heart Yard after being injured in a mail coach accident. Aids in the search for Rigaud.
Son of a small corn-factor. He gives money to Nicholas Nickleby on his escape from Dotheboys Hall. John marries Matilda Price.
Older brother of James although called "the Younger" because of his low position at the firm of Dombey and Son. He is looked upon with scorn by his older brother because he embezzled money from the firm when a young man. Harriet Carker is his sister.
Father of Edward, tries to prevent Edward's marriage to Emma Haredale. Becomes a member of Parliament. Killed in a duel by Emma's uncle Geoffrey.
One of the turnkeys (jailors) at the Marshalsea.
Loyal servant of Lord George Gordon who tries to isolate Gordon from the rioters when the protest turns to violence.
Son of a wealthy dust contractor and heir to his fortune if he agrees to marry Bella Wilfer. He is away from England when his father dies and on the way home he is supposed drowned in a case of mistaken identity. With his supposed death the dust fortune goes to Boffin. John gets himself hired into the Boffin home as secretary John Rokesmith. Here he meets Bella and, with the help of the Boffins, wins her love as Rokesmith, and marries her. He later reveals his true identity and regains his fortune.
Owner of Bleak House and party in the Chancery suit of Jarndyce and Jarndyce.He adopts Esther Summerson who becomes close friends with John's cousins, Ada Clare and Richard Carstone. John hates the lawsuit which has gone on for so long with no end in sight. Richard, however, becomes consumed with the case hoping it will make him his fortune. This obsession causes Carstone and Jarndyce suffer a falling out. Jarndyce falls in love with Esther and asked her to marry him, she accents because of her respect for him. Jarndyce later finds that Esther is in love with Woodcourt and releases her from their engagement.
Uncle of Edwin Drood who has an opium habit. He cares for his nephew but harbors secret feelings for Edwin's fiance Rosa Bud. Edwin disappears and the story ends prematurely with Dickens death but many believe that it was Jasper who killed Edwin Drood. "Mr Jasper is a dark man of some six-and-twenty, with thick, lustrous, well-arranged black hair and whiskers. He looks older than he is, as dark men often do. His voice is deep and good, his face and figure are good, his manner is a little sombre. His room is a little sombre, and may have had its influence in forming his manner".
Carrier, deliverer of goods, who is much older than his wife, Mary.
Model for "Podsnappery" or Victorian middle-class pomp and complacency, along with his wife, and daughter Georgiana. Dickens modeled John Podsnap on his friend and first biographer John Forster.
Alias used by John Harmon when he is employed as secretary to the Boffins.
Jagger's confidential clerk, friend of Pip who lives in a delightfully strange house with the Aged Parent. "A dry man, rather short in stature, with a square wooden face, whose expression seemed to have been imperfectly chipped out with a dull-edged chisel. There were some marks in it that might have been dimples, if the material had been softer and the instrument finer, but which, as it was, were only dints. The chisel had made three or four of these attempts at embellishment over his nose, but had given them up without an effort to smooth them off. I judged him to be a bachelor from the frayed condition of his linen ... He had glittering eyes-small, keen, and black- and thin wide mottled lips. He had had them, to the best of my belief, from forty to fifty years."
Former pupil of Pecksniff and friend of Tom Pinch although they disagree about Pecksniff's character. He is instrumental in exposing Jonas Chuzzlewit and later marries Tom's sister Ruth.
Proprietor of the Maypole Inn and father of Joe. Father and son quarrel when John treats the adult Joe as a child and Joe leaves, joining the army. John witnesses the destruction of the Maypole by the rioters. He is later reconciled with his son who, along with wife Dolly, become proprietors of the rebuilt Maypole.
Son of Anthony Chuzzlewit, he attempts to kill his father to gain his inheritance. Marries Mercy Pecksniff and, through his cruelty, breaks her spirit. He murders Tigg, the murder is discovered, and on the way to prison poisons himself.
Coketown Banker, mill owner and "self-made man" proud that raised himself in the streets after being abandoned as a child. His story is exposed as a sham when Mrs Pegler, his loving mother whom he has discarded, is found. Bounderby marries his friend Gradgrind's daughter, Louisa and later discards her.
Kate Nickleby becomes a companion to Julia after leaving Madame Mantalini's. Julia becomes jealous of Kate when Sir Mulberry Hawk begins to pay visits to their Belgravia home. Nicholas removes Kate from the home after he fights with Hawk.
Friend and confidant of Dora Spenlow and David's go-between during his courtship with Dora. She later goes to live in India.
Alias taken by John Harmon in order to investigate his own supposed drowning.
Sister of Nicholas. She is placed by her uncle, Ralph Nickleby, with Madame Mantalini. She is the object of the undesirable attentions of some of the evil-minded clients of her uncle who is using her to his advantage. She is rescued by Nicholas with the help of Newman Noggs. Later she marries Frank Cheeryble.
Solicitor for John Jarndyce in the firm Kenge and Carboy. Known as 'Conversation Kenge'.
Neighbors of Newman Noggs. Nicholas tutors their three daughters. Mrs Kenwigs uncle, Mr Lillyvick, is a well-to-do collector of water rates and the family hopes to eventually profit from this relation. Their expectations are dashed when Lillyvick marries actress Henrietta Petowker and are revived when she runs away with a retired navy captain.
Kit is shop boy at the Curiosity Shop owned by Nell's grandfather.
Drunken and illiterate proprietor of a rag and bottle shop. Known as the 'Lord Chancellor', Krook collects court documents. A will instrumental in the Jarndyce and Jarndyce court case is found among his holdings by Mr Smallweed who inherits Krook's possessions after his demise by spontaneous combustion. Krook is Mrs Smallweed's brother.
Wife of Sir Leicester Dedlock and, unknown to her husband, mother of Esther Summerson. When Tulkinghorn, the family lawyer, learns the secret she runs away and is found dead by Esther at the gates of the cemetery in which Esther's father, Captain Hawdon, lies buried.
Kindly vintner and distiller in Holborn based on an historical figure. The Catholic Langdale shelters Geoffrey Haredale from the rioters. His home and warehouse are burned in the riots, his stores of spirits are consumed by the mob.
Medical man and old schoolmate of John Westlock. Westlock hires Mrs Gamp to nurse Lewsome through a serious illness. Lewsome has provided poison to Jonas Chuzzlewit who intends using it to kill his father, Anthony. His later confession helps lead to Jonas' arrest.
Orphaned nine-year-old niece of Will Fern.
Manservant to Steerforth, involved in the concealment of the elopement of Steerforth and Emily. He is later guilty of embezzlement and is captured with the help of Miss Mowcher. David says of him "I believe there never existed in his station a more respectable-looking man. He was taciturn, soft-footed, very quiet in his manner, deferential, observant, always at hand when wanted, and never near when not wanted; but his great claim to consideration was his respectability".
Daughter of waterman Gaffer Hexam and sister of Charlie. She is opposed to her father's business of combing the Thames looking for drowned bodies but is true to him. When her father drowns she goes to live with Jenny Wren. Lizzie rejects the advances of schoolmaster Bradley Headstone and opposes the attention of Eugene Wrayburn, although she loves him, because they come from different classes of society. She runs away from London to a mill up the river. Wrayburn succeeds in finding her and is followed by Headstone who attempts to murder Wrayburn. Lizzie rescues Wrayburn and later marries him.
Foppish companion of Sir Mulberry Hawk who is planning to fleece him. When Verisopht tries to interfere in Hawk's plan of revenge on Nicholas Nickleby they duel, and Verisopht is killed.
1750-1793 Historical figure and leader of the Gordon (anti-Catholic) Riots (1780)
Sister of Paul Dombey Sr. and friend to Mrs Tox. Quote: Make an effort.
Oldest daughter of Thomas. She marries Bounderby who she doesn't love. She later leaves her husband and returns to her father.
Clerk to the solicitor Perker. Spends evening with other law clerks at the Magpie and Stump.
Daughter of Dr. Manette. She is taken to Paris by Jarvis Lorry when her father is released from prison. She marries Charles Darnay but is adored from afar by Sydney Carton who feels unfit for her. When Darnay is imprisoned in Paris by the revolutionaries Carton helps him escape, taking Darnay's place due to their resemblance. As Darnay and Lucie escape to England, Carton makes the supreme sacrifice.
Paul Dombey Sr's sister, Mrs Chick's, friend. She has designs to marry Paul Sr. after his first wife dies. Paul marries Mrs Granger instead, breaking Miss Tox's heart, but she stays loyal to him through later hardships. Dickens describes her as "a long lean figure, wearing such a faded air that she seemed not to have been made in what linen-drapers call 'fast colours' originally, and to have, by little and little, washed out".
Loud, overbearing philanthropist and guardian of Neville and Helena Landless.
Wife of wine shop keeper, Ernest Defarge, and a leader among the revolutionaries. She records enemies of the Republic in her knitting. She is killed in a struggle with Miss Pross in Paris.
Dressmaker in Cavandish Square who hires Kate Nickleby as a favor to her uncle Ralph, to whom she owes money. Her shiftless husband, Alfred, borrows heavily from Ralph and eventually bankrupts his wife's business.
Cares for her selfish, invalid father who tries to sell her in marriage to Authur Gride, assisted by Ralph Nickleby. Her father dies and the scheme is exposed. She marries Nicholas at the end of the story.
Mentally retarded granddaughter of Mrs Bangham and faithful friend of Amy Dorrit. "She was about eight-and-twenty, with large bones , large features, large feet and hands, large eyes and no hair".
Proprietors of a New York boarding house where Martin and Mark stay. The Major is typical of the scoundrels they meet in America.
Neighbor of Miss Tox and friend of Paul Dombey who introduces Paul to Edith Granger and Mrs Skewton. The Major describes himself as "tough, Sir, tough, and de-vilish sly!"
Dick Swiveller's nickname for the little servant kept locked below stairs by the Brasses. Swiveller later marries her.
Younger daughter of Dr. Jeddler. She runs away to live with her Aunt Martha that her sister Grace may marry Alfred Heathfield.
Ostler at the Blue Dragon Inn and servant to young Martin Chuzzlewit. He accompanies Martin to America and later marries Mrs Lupin, the Blue Dragon's landlady. The inn is renamed The Jolly Tapley.
Landlady of Samuel Pickwick in Goswell Street. Mrs Bardell is duped by unscrupulous lawyers, Dodson and Fogg, into bringing a breach of promise to marry suit against Pickwick. When Pickwick refuses to pay damages and is consigned to the Fleet prison, Dodson and Fogg sue Mrs Bardell for costs and have her consigned to the Fleet. Pickwick pays the penitent Bardell's costs to get her released.
Maiden sister of Dr. Jeddler. The doctor's younger daughter, Marion, runs away and secretly lives lives with Martha.
Overbearing wife of Gabriel, mother of Dolly. A woman of "uncertain temper" and a fanatical protestant, her fanaticism is tempered after the riots when she witnesses the heroics of her husband
Mary is the much younger wife of John. She is called Dot due to her small size and dumpling shape. Her parents are Old Dot and Mrs Dot, both also small. Mary works to reunite old lovers May Fielding and Edward Plummer. Mary.
Mary cares for old Martin Chuzzlewit with the knowledge that she will not profit from Martin's wealth after his death. Chuzzlewit's grandson, Martin, falls in love with Mary which displeases his grandfather who disinherits young Martin. Young Martin goes to America to seek his fortune. Finding only sickness and misery in America, Martin returns to England, is reconciled with his grandfather and marries Mary.
Barnaby's mother, goes to great lengths to keep Barnaby away from his father who has murdered Reuben Haredale.
A miller's daughter, Fanny Squeers friend. She marries John Browdie.
Father of Herbert and cousin of Miss Havisham. He is the only one of Miss Havisham's relatives who speaks honestly of her and has been banished from her presence. Matthew is Pip's tutor in London. He has no control over his large family and has a habit of pulling himself up by his hair in frustration. Pip tells Miss Havisham of Matthew's good character and she leaves him 4000 pounds in her will. Matthew's wife, Belinda, is obsessed with social position, having been the daughter of a knight, and pays no attention to housekeeping or her young children who are left to "tumble up" by themselves. Many believe Dickens modeled the Pocket household after his own large family.
Former lover of Edward Plummer, she is reunited with him after nearly marrying Tackleton at the urging of her mother, Mrs Fielding.
Schoolmaster in Gradgrind's school where fancy and imagination are discouraged in favor of hard facts.
Daughter of poor ticket porter Trotty Veck. Marries Richard on New Year's Day.
Seth Pecksniff's younger daughter and sister of Charity. Seth gives her in marriage to Jonas Chuzzlewit, who breaks her spirit, and her heart.
Spendthrift lover of Marion Jeddler. Marion supposedly runs away with Warden which, in the end, turns out to be untrue. Later the reformed Warden marries Marion.
Maid in the Varden household. Comically allies with Martha Varden against her husband. Miggs aids the rioters when they attempt to capture Gabriel. She is discharged after the riots and becomes a jailor in a woman's prison.
One of Mrs Pocket's maids (along with Flopson) who helps control the Pocket's 'tumbled up' children.
Wife of William and the only member of the family not touched by Redlaw's gift of forgetting past sorrows. Her inherent goodness, based on remembrance of her lost child, reverses the effects of this curse in her family, the Tetterby family, and Edmund Longford.
'Godmother' who raises Esther Summerson. Later found to be Esther's aunt, the sister of Lady Dedlock.
A slightly mad old woman who is a regular attendant at the court of Chancery expecting to receive a favorable judgement in a case that no one is sure has ever existed.
A very rich and grim old woman who lives in seclusion at Satis House. She is the adopted mother of Estella who she teaches to break men's hearts to avenge her own being left at the altar by Compeyson years before. She continues to wear her wedding dress and her room contains the yellowing remnants of the wedding day including the mouldy wedding cake. Pip goes to Miss Havisham's to play and meets Estella. Pip believes Miss Havisham is his secret benefactor as he goes to London and becomes a gentleman, finding out later that the convict Magwitch has supplied his "Expectations". Miss Havisham dies when her house burns down and leaves her fortune to Estella.
Miniature painter in the Strand. The Nickleby's lease lodging from her briefly and she becomes their faithful friend. In the end she marries the Cheeryble Brothers old clerk, Tim Linkinwater.
Dwarf hairdresser and manicurist of Steerforth. David, expecting to meet Miss Mowcher for the first time reports: "I looked at the doorway and saw nothing. I was still looking at the doorway, thinking that Miss Mowcher was a long while making her appearance, when, to my infinite astonishment, there came waddling round a sofa which stood between me and it, a pursy dwarf, of about forty or forty-five, with a very large head and face, a pair of roguish grey eyes, and such extremely little arms, that, to enable herself to lay a finger archly against her snub nose, as she ogled Steerforth, she was obliged to meet the finger half-way, and lay her nose against it. Her chin, which was what is called a double chin, was so fat that it entirely swallowed up the strings of her bonnet, bow and all". See sidebar on Copperfield page.
Lucie Manette's loyal maid. In the end of the novel she struggles with Madame Defarge and Defarge is killed in the scuffle.
Wemmick's particular friend, a woman of wooden appearance in an orange gown with green gloves. Wemmick later surprises Pip on an outing by suddenly ("here's a church, lets go in") marrying Miss Skiffins.
Principal of a school for girls at Nun's House in Cloisterham where Rosa Bud and Helena Landless attend. She is assisted by Mrs Tisher. Miss Twinkleton later becomes Rosa's chaperone in London.
Dark figure who lures Tattycoram away from the kind-hearted Meagles whom she hates because of Pet Meagles' marriage to Henry Gowan, who had jilted her.
The lady in yellow curl papers whom Samuel Pickwick accidentally meets in her room at Ipswich. She is courted by Pickwick's fellow traveler to Ipswich, Peter Magnus.
Jagger's maid whom he had successfully defended in a murder trial. Jaggers gives her little girl (Estella) to Miss Havisham to raise.
Con man and swindler who first appears in the story fronting for Chevy Slyme and trying to squeeze the assembled Chuzzlewit family for money. Later he appears in splendor as head of the fraudulent Anglo-Bengalee Disinterested Loan and Life Assurance Company and has changed his name to Tigg Montigue. He dupes Jonas Chuzzlewit into joining the company, uses Jonas to fleece Pecksniff, and is murdered by Jonas.
A lawyer too lazy to take on much work and friend of Eugene Wrayburn. His only client is the Boffins, which puts him in the middle of much of the story.
Undertaker who arranges the funeral of Anthony Chuzzlewit and recommends Mrs Gamp. Mr Mould has "a face in which a queer attempt at melancholy was at odds with a smirk of satisfaction".
Friends of the Gargerys, Mr Hubble is the village wheelwright.
Kindhearted retired banker Mr Meagles, his wife and daughter, Pet, befriend Arthur Clennam, Amy Dorrit, and Daniel Doyce. The Meagles adopt Tattycoram from the Foundling Hospital.
Mr Merdle is unscrupulous banker. Investing in his enterprises ruins the Dorrits, Arthur Clennam, and others. Merdle commits suicide when his fraud is uncovered. Mrs Merdle is the mother of Edmund Sparkler by a previous marriage.
Relatives of old Martin Chuzzlewit's (Mrs is old Martin's niece) with designs on inheriting his money.
Boston doctor whom Martin and Mark meet at Pawkins' Boarding House in New York and one of the few positive characters they meet in the America. Bevan later loans them money to return to England.
Second Hand furniture broker with a shop in Bishopsgate Street. Brogley takes possession of the Wooden Midshipman when Sol Gills cannot pay his debts. Sol is loaned money from Paul Dombey to pay the debt. Walter Gay stays with Brogley when he returns from being shipwrecked.
Doctor who delivers David Copperfield.
Operates Cripples Evening Academy in the same lodging house where Frederick Dorrit lives. Amy Dorrit attended classes there.
An eccentric lodger at Betsy Trotwood's and friend of David Copperfield.
Assistant to Dr Blimber at the school in Brighton where Paul Dombey Jr attends. Later marries Blimber's daughter Cornelia and takes over the management of the school.
Old Martin Chuzzlewit's agent who hires Tom Pinch to put his library in order. Mr Fips was "small and spare, and looked peaceable, and wore black shorts and powder".
Sir Joseph Bowley's confidential secretary.
Companion to Flora Finching (Aunt to her late husband) and one of the funniest characters in Dickens. Dickens describes her as "an amazing little old woman, with a face like a staring wooden doll too cheap for expression, and a stiff yellow wig perched unevenly on the top of her head, as if the child who owned the doll had driven a tack through it anywhere, so that it only got fastened on". She has an amazing capacity for uttering totally non-sensical barbs which "being totally uncalled for by anything said by anybody, and traceable to no association of ideas, confounded and terrified the mind".
Cantankerous friend of Mr Brownlow. Quote: "I'll eat my head!"
Oldest boarder at Todger's Boarding House. A fish-salesman and book-keeper aged forty.
Collector of water rates and uncle of Mrs Kenwigs. He secretly marries Henrietta Petowker in Portsmouth, much to the dismay of the Kenwigs, who had hoped to inherit his money. The Kenwigs expectations are renewed when Henrietta runs off with a half-pay (retired) captain.
Assistant manager at Dombey and Son. Morfin aids John Carker when he overhears John's mistreatment at the hands of his brother James. Morfin later marries Harriet Carker.
Editor of the Eatenswill Gazette and sworn enemy of Mr Slurk, editor of the Eatenswill Independent.
Landlord of Pancks who assists in finding William Dorrit's fortune.
Charwoman and messenger at the Marshalsea prison. She attends the birth of Amy Dorrit.
London landlady of Rosa Bud and her chaperone, Miss Twinkleton. She insists on using the title 'Billickin' in business matters fearing being taken advantage of because she is a woman. Mrs Billickin and Miss Twinkleton take a comical dislike for each other.
Widowed society woman and old friend of Miss Havisham with whom Estella is "placed" in Richmond to be sponsored in London society. She has a daughter several years older than Estella.
One of the turnkeys (jailors) at the Marshalsea. Mrs Chivery runs a tobacco shop around the corner from the Marshalsea on Horsemonger Lane.
Invalid mother of Arthur with whom she has a falling out over the family business. She avoids a blackmail scheme by Rigaud/Blandois when her tumble-down house tumbles down on him.
Mother of Edith Granger who is 70 years old but tries to appear much younger through the use of cosmetics and various devices. Dickens describes Mrs Skewton, in being dismantled for bed by her maid, taking off of paint, clothes, wig, etc as being "tumbled into ruins like a house of painted cards". Edith resents her mother who has packaged Edith to lure rich gentlemen from a child.
Matron of the workhouse where Oliver is born. She marries Bumble making him miserable. The Bumbles are disgraced and end up as paupers in the workhouse they once ruled over.
Wife of Vincent Crummles and actress in his traveling stage troupe. Described as "a stout, portly female, apparently between forty and fifty, in a tarnished silk cloak, with her bonnet dangling by the strings in her hand, and her hair (of which she had a great quantity) braided in a large festoon over each temple."
David Copperfield's brandy-loving landlady at the Adelphi.
Scrooge's charwoman who sells his bed linen and curtains to Old Joe when Scrooge is shown shadows of the future by the Ghost of Christmas Future.
Matron hired as chaperone to 'varnish' Amy and Fanny Dorrit. She admonishes the girls that reciting "Papa, potatoes, poultry, prunes and prism" is good for the lips. She has designs on William Dorrit but he dies before he can propose.
Widow of Mr Peggotty's former partner in a boat, who had died very poor. She lives with Mr Peggotty and later emigrates to Australia with him. Quote: 'a lone lorn creetur' and everythink went contrary with her'.
Imaginary friend of Sairey Gamp who uses Mrs Harrises' invented quotes to establish Mrs Gamp's good reputation.
Conceited American literary lady Martin is forced to accompany on the first leg of the trip to Eden.
Proprietor of a traveling waxwork who employs Nell and her grandfather. When the grandfather schemes to steal from Mrs Jarley, in order to support a gambling habit, Nell persuades him that they should take to the road again.
Wife of Joe Gargery and sister of Pip who cruelly mistreats them both, frequently going "on the rampage" and employing "the tickler" to beat them with. She is beaten by Orlick and later dies.
Landlady of the Blue Dragon Inn. Eventually marries Mark Tapley.
Editor of the Eatenswill Independent and sworn enemy of Mr Pott, editor of the Eatenswill Gazette.
Captain Cuttle's widowed landlady at Brig Place. The Captain is terrified of her and is constantly trying to avoid her. She eventually coerces the Captain's friend, Jack Bunsby, into marriage.
Matron of a workhouse farm where Oliver is raised to age 9.
Mother of Harry and the adopted mother of Rose.
Mother of Nicholas and Kate. Absent-minded and self-absorbed, she continues to "put on airs" even in the reduced situation of her family after the financial ruin and death of her husband. The character is heavily drawn from Dickens' mother.
Undertaker to whom Oliver is apprenticed. Oliver is mistreated and runs away to London
Revealed at the end of the story to be Bounderby's loving mother, exposing his claim as "self-made man", who raised himself in the streets, to be a sham.
Cantankerous operator of a boarding house in Brighton when Paul jr and Florence are sent there for Paul's health. Later becomes Mr Dombey's housekeeper. Considers herself ill-used because her husband was killed, 40 years earlier, in the Peruvian Mines. Dickens modeled Pipchin on Mrs Roylance, Dickens' landlady in London when his father was imprisoned for debt.
Esther Summerson's nurse. Later marries Rev Chadband.
Longtime housekeeper of Chesney Wold, home of Sir Leicester Dedlock. Mother of George and another son who is an important ironmaster in northern England.
Housekeeper of Bounderby with aristocratic connections. She is a busybody, causing dissension between Bounderby and his wife Louisa Gradgrind.
Wife of Wackford Squeers: "a large raw-boned figure, was about half a head taller than Mr Squeers". While Mr Squeers attempts to keep his cruelty in check, in order to keep up appearances, Mrs Squeers is openly cruel.
Cook and housekeeper for the Meagles.
Miss Twinkleton's assistant at the school for girls at Nun's House.
Proprietor of M. Todgers Commercial Boarding House located near the monument. Mrs Todgers is described as a "rather bony and hard featured lady". Pecksniff and his daughters stay at Todgers when visiting London.
Landlady of the house at Mill Pond Bank where Old Bill Barley and his daughter, Clara, live. Magwitch is kept secretly in the house waiting for the escape out of Britain.
Paul Dombey Jrs' nurse after Polly Toodle is discharged.
Owner of a dance academy on Newman Street and a "model of deportment". His son, Prince, gives dancing lessons and supports his father.
Father of Agnes and lawyer to Betsy Trotwood. His overindulgence of wine causes him to be vulnerable to the schemes of Uriah Heep, who becomes his partner and attempts to ruin him.
Secretive private investigator for Tigg Montigue employed to provide information on the customers of the fraudulent life assurance company. Nadgett exposes Jonas Chuzzlewit as Montigue's murderer. Nadgett is also landlord of Tom and Ruth Pinch in Islington.
Prostitute and member of Fagin's band of thieves. Befriends Oliver and is eventually murdered by Sikes trying to help Oliver escape Fagin's clutches.
Member of the Pickwick club and traveling companion to Pickwick and his friends. Winkle is supposedly the sportsman of the group but all of his attempts at sporting activities prove him a humbug. He marries Arabella Allen, which upsets his father. Later Winkle's father comes to London and sees his daughter-in-law for himself, and is reconciled to the marriage.
Indian servant of Major Joe Bagstock.
Sheriff's officer who arrests debtors and delivers them to Coavin's sponging house (temporary debtor's prison) thus Skimpole gives Neckett the nickname "Coavinses". Neckett dies leaving three orphans: Charlotte (Charley), Emma, and Tom. Charley becomes Esther Summerson's maid.
Executioner at Tyburn, becomes involved in the Gordon Riots and is executed.
Owner of the Old Curiosity Shop. He has a secret gambling habit, hoping to make a fortune for his granddaughter. He borrows money to gamble from Quilp, when he cannot pay he takes Nell and escapes London to the country. When Nell dies he is heartbroken and dies soon after.
Known as Little Nell, she is the principal character in the story. She lives with her grandfather, when he falls into the clutches of Daniel Quilp she helps him escape London. The hardships endured during their wanderings are too much for the delicate Nell and she dies in a quiet village where she and her grandfather had gained employment.
Alias of Capt. Hawdon (Nemo is latin for nobody). Nemo is doing some law copying for Snagsby and is a boarder in Krook's rag and bottle shop when he dies of an opium overdose. He is later found to be the former lover of Lady Dedlock and the father of Esther Summerson.
Twin brother of Helena. He and his sister are brought to Cloisterham by their guardian, Mr Honeythunder. Neville is attracted to Rosa Bud and, being set up by Jasper, quarrels with Edwin Drood. After Drood's disappearance Jasper cast blame on Neville who has no alibi and flees to London with his sister.
Once a well-to-do gentleman but he squanders his money and is reduced to serving Ralph Nickleby as clerk. He befriends Nicholas and eventually helps him defeat the designs of Ralph.
Daughter of Vincent Crummles and actress in his traveling stage troupe. Billed as the Infant Phenomenon, her acting capability is greatly over-rated by her father. She is listed as 10 years old but is apparently much older: "though of short stature, had a comparatively aged countenance, and had moreover been precisely the same age -- not perhaps to the full extent of the memory of the oldest inhabitant, but certainly for five good years. But she had been kept up late every night, and put upon an unlimited allowance of gin-and-water from infancy, to prevent her growing tall, and perhaps this system of training had produced in the infant phenomenon these additional phenomena."
Assistant at Sowerberry's with whom Oliver fights. Noah later joins Fagin's band and spys on Nancy. After Fagin's capture he testifies against him and becomes an informer for the police.
John Harmon's servant. When John's son is supposed drowned, Boffin and his wife inherit the Harmon fortune, for a time.
New York friends of Mr Bevan whom he introduces to Martin. Their initial warm welcome cools when they discover he made the trip to America in steerage.
Clara Barley's bedridden father, a retired ship's purser, who suffers with gout which he treats with an abundance of rum and pepper.
Fence who buys Scrooge's bed linen from Mrs Dilber when Scrooge is shown the future by the Ghost of Christmas Future .
Mr Wardle's partially deaf mother.
Old hag present at Oliver's birth. She steals the locket and ring from Oliver's mother as she lays dying.
Clerk and rent collector for Mr Casby. He assists in finding William Dorrit's fortune. Dickens employs the metaphor of Pancks as a tugboat guiding Casby's "ship". Pancks moves tugboat style "with a puff and a snort".
Powerful head of the House of Dombey. He wants a son, and when a daughter (Florence) is born he despises her. His second child, a son (Paul), is weak and sickly and dies a child. Paul's first wife dies with the birth of Paul Jr and he remarries. His second wife, Edith Granger, does not love him and eventually runs away with Carker, a manager at the firm. With Carker gone, Paul is incapable of managing the business and it fails. Paul ends his days reconciled with his daughter and doting on his grandchildren, little Paul, but especially little Florence.
The long hoped-for heir to the house of Dombey and Son. His mother dies at his birth leaving him a frail and sickly child. His father sends him to Brighton in the care of Mrs Pipchin hoping the sea air will bolster his failing health. He then attends Dr. Blimber's school and his health continues to decline. Paul returns home to London and dies in the care of his sister, Florence, leaving the firm of Dombey and Son without an heir. Dickens modeled Paul (and also Tiny Tim) on his sister Fanny's crippled son Henry Burnett Jr.
Landlord of Mrs Gamp, barber and bird-fancier. "Poll Sweedlepipe's house was one great bird's nest. Gamecocks resided in the kitchen; pheasants wasted the brightness of their golden plumage on the garret; bantams roosted in the cellar; owls had possession of the bedroom; and specimens of all the smaller fry of birds chirrupped and twittered in the shop."
Old and hideously ugly housekeeper of Arthur Gride. Peg is jealous when Gride plans to marry the much younger Madeline Bray. Peg steals documents relating to Madeline's inheritance which are recovered and help undo Gride. For the theft Peg is transported.
Messenger at the firm of Dombey and Son. He and his Wife live at Ball's Pond, a suburb on the northern edge of London.
Solicitor of Mr Wardle, later represents Samuel Pickwick in the Bardell vs Pickwick breach of promise suit.
Samuel Pickwick's fellow traveler to Ipswich where Magnus plans to propose to Miss Witherfield, the lady in yellow curl papers.
Eighty-seven year-old patriarch of the Swidger family. He loses his present happiness, based on his memories, when touched by Redlaw's gift. He is restored to happiness by Milly Swidger.
Friend of John Willet at the Maypole Inn.
George Rouncewell's ugly little assistant at the shooting gallery. Formerly a traveling tinker.
Principal character of the book. Brought up "by hand" by his sister, Mrs Joe Gargery, twenty years his senior, who mistreats him along with her husband, Joe Gargery. Pip meets Magwitch on the marshes after his escape from the prison ship and brings him food. Magwitch is recaptured and sent away to Australia where he prospers. Pip is introduced to Miss Havisham, an eccentric old woman, and her charge, Estella, who Pip falls in love with. Estella has been taught by Miss Havisham to break men's hearts as restitution for Miss Havisham's having been left at the altar years before. Pip begins to receive money through an unknown source. He becomes a gentleman, goes to London, and drifts away from early friends. Pip eventually learns that his benefactor is not Miss Havisham, as he believes, but the convict, Magwitch.
Thomas Plornish, a plasterer previously imprisoned at the Marshalsea with the Dorrits, lives with his wife and two children at Bleeding Heart Yard.
Little Paul Dombey's nurse, known in the Dombey household as Richards. She is dismissed when she takes Paul to visit her family in a poorer section of London. She re-enters the story when Captain Cuttle asked her to look after Sol Gill's Shop, the Wooden Midshipman. She is the mother of Rob the Grinder who falls in with bad company and becomes a minor villain in the story. Dickens describes Polly as a "plump rosy-cheeked wholesome apple-faced young woman".
Son of Mr Turveydrop, owner of a dance academy. Prince, named for the Prince Regent, gives dancing lessons and supports his father. Prince marries Caddy Jellyby.
Joe Gargary's uncle ("but Mrs Joe appropriated him"), hypocritical and well-to-do corn-chandler in the nearest town, and drove his own chaise-cart. He takes Pip to meet Miss Havisham and takes credit for arranging Pips "great expectations". "A large hard-breathing middle-aged slow man, with a mouth like a fish, dull staring eyes, and sandy hair standing upright on his head, so that he looked as if he had just been all but choked".
Mr Wardle's spinster sister (aged 50 at least). She courts Tupman but is lured into elopement by Jingle, after her money. Rachael and Jingle are caught before a marriage can take place and Jingle is bought off by Mr Wardle.
Uncle to Nicholas and Kate (and later we find, father of Smike). A rich and miserly moneylender who feigns to help his late brother's family but, in reality, tries to humiliate Nicholas and use Kate to his own advantage. His evil plans and schemes prove his ultimate undoing and he eventually hangs himself.
Professor of chemistry who is visited by a phantom on Christmas Eve and given the gift of forgetting painful memories. The gift turns out to be a curse as the gift is passed on to those Redlaw touches. The adverse effects of the gift are finally reversed by Milly Swidger.
Brother of Geoffrey, father of Emma. Murdered before the story begins.
Typical Dickensian hypocritical reverend, admonishing Jo in the spirit while he starves. Marries the former Mrs Rachael.
Hypocritical Deputy Shepherd (from the Dorking branch) of the Brick Lane Branch of the United Grand Junction Ebenezer Temperance Association. Exposed by Tony Weller whose wife Susan is one of Stiggins' flock.
'An old Jewish man, in an ancient coat, long of skirt and wide of pocket' who fronts Fledgeby's money-lending business. He befriends Lizzie Hexam and Jenny Wren.
Ward of Mr Jarndyce and a party to the case of Jarndyce and Jarndyce. He marries Ada Clare and later dies when his health declines as the estate he hopes to acquire is consumed in court costs.
Villain of the novel. Rigaud attempts to blackmail Mrs Clennam and has her house fall on him for his efforts. "When Monsieur Rigaud laughed, a change took place in his face, that was more remarkable than prepossessing. His moustache went up under his nose, and his nose came down over his moustache, in a very sinister and cruel manner".
Waterman and former partner of Gaffer Hexam who tries to pin blame on Gaffer for the Harmon murder to gain a reward. Riderhood later becomes a lock-keeper and tries to blackmail Bradley Headstone after Bradley tries to murder Eugene Wrayburn. In a quarrel both Riderhood and Headstone drown in the Thames. Rogue is also the father of Pleasant Riderhood.
Personal maid to Lady Dedlock after Hortense is dismissed. Marries Mrs Rouncewell's grandson.
Betrothed to Edwin Drood in childhood, they later agree that they cannot marry. Edwin disappears and John Jasper declares his love for Rosa. In terror she flees to London to her guardian, Grewgious. "The pet pupil of the Nuns' House is Miss Rosa Bud, of course called Rosebud; wonderfully pretty, wonderfully childish, wonderfully whimsical. An awkward interest (awkward because romantic) attaches to Miss Bud in the minds of the young ladies, on account of its being known to them that a husband has been chosen for her by will and bequest, and that her guardian is bound down to bestow her on that husband when he comes of age".
Companion to Mrs Steerforth, jealously in love with Steerforth, who has marked her face when a child by throwing a hammer in a fit of temper. Rosa hates Emily for running away with Steerforth. "A slight short figure, dark, and not agreeable to look at, but with some appearance of good looks too... She had black hair and eager black eyes, and was thin, and had a scar upon her lip. It was an old scar, I should rather call it seam, for it was not discoloured, and had healed years ago, which had once cut through her mouth, downward towards the chin, but was now barely visible across the table, except above and on her upper lip, the shape of which it had altered. I concluded in my own mind that she was about thirty years of age, and that she wished to be married. She was a little dilapidated, like a house, with having been so long to let; yet had, as I have said, an appearance of good looks. Her thinness seemed to be the effect of some wasting fire within her, which found a vent in her gaunt eyes".
A poor girl adopted by Mrs Maylie, she and Mr Brownlow endeavor to help Oliver through Nancy. When Nancy's conversation with Rose on London Bridge is overheard by Claypole, Nancy is murdered by Sikes. She later marries Harry.
Sister of Tom Pinch. She is governess to a wealthy brass and copper founder's family in Camberwell. When Tom goes to visit her he finds she is unhappy in her work and is accused by the family of being unable to command the respect of her employer's spoiled daughter. She leaves to live with Tom in Islington and later marries Tom's friend John Westlock.
A midwife, nurse and "layer out" of the dead, although she is much more concerned with her own creature comforts than those of her patients. Habitually in liquor, she creates the imaginary Mrs Harris whose good opinion is used to promote Mrs Gamp's character. Sairey Gamp is one of Dickens most intriguing characters. Meet Mrs Gamp.
Sister and partner of Quilp's unscrupulous attorney, Sampson Brass. She is the mother of the Marchioness, the below-stairs maid.
"An attorney of no good repute" Brass served as Daniel Quilp's lawyer. He helps Quilp get the Curiosity Shop from Nell's grandfather and when he tries to help Quilp frame Kit Nubbles he is undone with the help of his clerk Dick Swiveler and the Marchioness, his below-stairs maid.
Retired businessman and founder and chairman of the Pickwick Club. Pickwick, along with his friends, Tupman, Snodgrass, and Winkle and his servant, Sam Weller, travel around England in search of adventure. Pickwick is one Dickens most loved characters and his story propelled Dickens to literary stardom.
Mr Pickwick's servant is one of the most popular characters in Dickens' works. He counsels his master with Cockney wisdom and is thoroughly devoted to Pickwick. Samuel's father, Tony Weller, is equally entertaining.
Barrister who represents Mrs Bardell in her suit against Samuel Pickwick. He bullies the witnesses into giving incriminating testimony and Pickwick is falsely convicted.
Sanctimonious surveyor and architect "who has never designed or built anything", and one of the biggest hypocrites in fiction. Father of daughters Mercy and Charity. In an effort to gain old Martin's money he embraces then throws out young Martin at old Martin's wish. When long time servant Tom Pinch learns of Pecksniff's treachery he is also thrown out. Pecksniff's self-serving designs are eventually exposed by Old Martin who reconciles with his grandson, young Martin. Dickens' description of Pecksniff's hypocrisy is telling: "Some people likened him to a direction-post, which is always telling the way to a place, and never goes there".
Rascally street vendor hired by Mr Boffin to read to him. Wegg is illiterate and makes the stories up as he "reads" along. After installing himself in the Boffin household he goes about trying to get a piece of the Boffin fortune.
Locksmith Gabriel Varden's apprentice who is in love with Gabriel's daughter, Dolly. He becomes a leader of the rioters during the Gordon Riots and during the fighting loses his slender legs, long his pride and joy. After the uprising he is fitted with wooden legs and becomes a bootblack.
Mysterious lodger of the Brasses who is trying to find Nell and her grandfather. He is revealed to be the brother of the grandfather and finds the pair shortly before his brother's death. In the original serialization of the novel in Master Humphrey's Clock the Single Gentleman turns out to be the original narrator of the story, Master Humphrey.
Blind half-brother of novelist Henry Fielding (Tom Jones). Magistrate at Bow Street. Dickens has him at the scene of the Gordon Riots when, in fact, Fielding was on his deathbed at the time of the riots.
Member of Parliament who condescendingly calls himself "the poor man's friend and father" and exhorts Trotty to "Live hard and temperately, be respectful, exercise your self-denial, bring up your family on next to nothing, pay your rent as regularly as the clock strikes, be punctual in your dealings". His wife is Lady Bowley.
Husband of Lady Dedlock, owner of Chesney Wold, and guardian of the status quo.
Business associate of Ralph Nickleby. Makes advances to Kate Nickleby and is thrashed by Nicholas. When his revenge is opposed by Lord Verisopht they duel and Verisopht is killed. Hawk flees to France.
Daughter of Signor Jupe, a clown in Sleary's circus, who is deserted by her father and taken in by Gradgrind where she befriends Louisa.
Proprietor of Sleary's Circus. Speaks with a lisp ("People mutht be amuthed"). He helps Tom Gradgrind escape abroad after the bank robbery.
Grandfather (Joshua) Smallweed is a userer to whom George Rouncewell owes money. Smallweed uses this leverage to obtain from George a sample of Captain Hawdon's handwriting in an attempt to help Tulkinghorn learn Lady Dedlock's secret. Also in the Smallweed family are grandmother, Krook's sister, at whom grandfather throws cushions when she mentions money, and the twin grandchildren, Bartholomew and Judy.
Abandoned as a child at Dotheboys Hall in the care of the evil Squeers, Smike is mistreated for years before being rescued by Nicholas. He travels to Portsmouth with Nicholas and performs in Crummles stage troupe and is welcomed as part of the family when he and Nicholas return to London. He is briefly retaken in London by Squeers and escapes with the help of John Browdie. Smike later dies from the treatment he received as a child. After his death it is discovered that he was Ralph Nickleby's son, making him the cousin of Nicholas and Kate.
Law stationer near Chancery Lane who hires Nemo (Capt Hawdon) to do some copy work. Snagsby's wife is a zealous supporter of Rev. Chadband.
Father who puts his two step-sons in Squeers' school, Dotheboys Hall. Snawley later poses as Smike's father in Ralph Nickleby's scheme to get the runaway boy back. Snawley's wife later forces him to expose Ralph's plan.
Country lawyers who handle the legal affairs of Dr. Jeddler and Michael Warden.
Clerk and bell-ringer at the parish church in Chigwell. Friend of John Willet at the Maypole Inn. Daisy tells the story of Reuben Haredale's murder.
Uncle of Walter Gay and owner of a ship's chandler shop called "The Wooden Midshipman". When Walter's ship is lost at sea Solomon goes in search of him, leaving the care of the shop to his friend, Capt. Cuttle.
Shady lawyer whom Tony Weller engages to arrange Samuel Weller's imprisonment in the Fleet in order to be with his master, Samuel Pickwick.
First love of Dick Swiveler. Swiveler reluctantly leaves her and enters into a scheme, hatched by Nell's brother Fred Trent, to marry Nell and inherit the grandfather's money. Sophey marries Cheggs, a market gardener.
Blind member of the 'Prentice Knights with Simon Tappertit. He joins Barnaby Rudge Sr. trying to extort money from Mary Rudge. Killed when he tries to run from officers arresting Hugh, Barnaby, and Rudge Sr.
Pip's fellow student at Matthew Pocket's. He helps Herbert rescue Pip from Orlick and helps Herbert row the boat during the attempt to get Magwitch out of the country.
A worker in Bounderby's mill. His wife is a drunk and he befriends Rachael. He falls out with his employer and leaves to look for work elsewhere. He is accused of robbing the bank and before his name is cleared he falls down a well and dies. Later he is cleared with the discovery that the robbery was committed by young Tom Gradgrind.
Florence Dombey's maid who is discharged when she confronts Paul Dombey about his treatment of Florence. She later marries Toots. Dickens describes Susan as "a short, brown womanly girl, with a little snub nose, and black eyes like jet beads".
Lawyer who is able to get a charge of treason reversed for Charles Darnay due to a strong physical resemblance. He later takes Darnay's place at the guillotine. Quote: It is a far, far better thing I do than I have ever done, it is a far, far better rest I go to than I have ever known.
Known as Gruff and Tackleton, the name of his toymaking business. He is the Scrooge of the story, a hard-hearted, unfeeling man who has lived off of children all his life. He is the employer of Caleb Plummer and schemes to marry May Fielding. Like Scrooge, he softens at the end of the story.
Retired navy man and friend of Crisparkle. He befriends Neville in London and works with Grewgious and Crisparkle in protecting Neville from John Jasper.
Adopted by the Meagles from the Foundling Hospital, Harriet is given the name Tattycoram and is maid to the Meagles daughter, Pet. She exhibits fits of temper and is counseled by Mr Meagle to "count five and twenty, Tattycoram". She is influenced away from the Meagles by the evil Miss Wade. She later is reunited with the Meagles and assists in the undoing of Rigaud/Blandois blackmail attempt.
Poor family touched by Redlaw's gift of forgetting past sorrows, which turns out to be a curse to them. Adolphus, a newsman, his wife Sophia, Adolphus Jr, a newspaper boy at the railway station, Johnny, who cares for the baby, Sally, called little Moloch. They are restored to their former loving natures by Milly Swidger.
A mill owner retired from business and father of Louisa and Tom. He runs a school and emphasizes the importance of facts and figures over fancy to his students and his children. By the end of the story he learns that facts and figures must be tempered by love and forbearance.
Member of Crummles traveling stage troupe: "a dark-complexioned man, inclining indeed to sallow, with long thick black hair, and very evident inclinations (although he was close shaved) of a stiff beard, and whiskers of the same deep shade. His age did not appear to exceed thirty, though many at first sight would have considered him much older, as his face was long, and very pale, from the constant application of stage paint."
Pompous auctioneer turned mayor of Cloisterham. "The Purest jackass in Cloisterham".
Angular and clumsy nurse to the Peerybingle's infant son.
Faithful clerk to the Cheeryble Brothers and friend of the Nicklebys. He marries Miss La Creevy.
Crippled son of Bob Cratchit. The forecast of Tim's death by the Ghosts of Christmas Present and Future is instrumental in Scrooge's reformation after which Tim is afforded proper medical attention and is cured. Dickens based Tiny Tim (and also Paul Dombey Jr) on his sister Fanny's crippled son Henry Burnett Jr.
Poor ticket porter whose dream on New Year's Eve forms the basis of the story.
Friend of John Willet at the Maypole Inn.
Son of Thomas. He is employed at Bounderby's bank from whom he later steals, the blame is set on Stephen Blackpool. He later leaves the country with the aid of Sleary and his circus troupe.
Fellow pupil with David Copperfield and Steerforth at Salem House. David's best friend and best man at David's wedding to Dora Spenlow. He later becomes a lawyer and marries Sophy Crewler.
Devoted admirer and assistant to Pecksniff. A kindly, sweet-tempered fellow, completely blind to Pecksniff's hypocrisy despite a multitude of evidence to the contrary. He finally becomes aware of Pecksniff's true character and is dismissed. He goes to London to live with his sister and is employed by a mysterious gentleman which turns out to be old Martin Chuzzlewit.
Friend of Guppy who takes Nemo's room at Krook's after Nemo's death. Jobling and Guppy discover the spectacular death of Krook and are temporary celebrities, drinking for free at the Sol's Arms.
Father of Sam Weller, a coachman and repository of Cockney wisdom. His wife, Susan, is proprietor of the Marquis and Granby Inn in Dorking. Susan falls in with the hypocritical Reverend Stiggins, of the Brick Lane Temperance Association, who the frequently imbibing Tony later exposes.
Scatterbrained classmate of Paul Dombey Jr at Dr Blimber's Academy. Toots falls helplessly in love with Florence Dombey and pursues her, in his absentminded way, until Florence marries Walter Gay. In the end Toots marries Susan Nipper. Quote: "it's of no consequence".
Tailor who makes Pip a new suit of clothes before he goes to London, also in charge of the mourners at Pip's sister's funeral.
Assistant to Trabb, the tailor, who terrorizes Pip. He later leads Herbert to the limekiln to rescue Pip from Orlick.
A member of the Pickwick club and traveling companion to Mr Pickwick in the story's adventures. A middle-aged bachelor with a weakness for the ladies.
Family lawyer to the Dedlocks. When he finds out Lady Dedlock's secret past, and tries to gain from it, he is murdered by Lady Dedlock's former maid, Hortense.
A hypocritical clerk of Mr Wickfield's who is continually citing his humbleness. He deviously plots to ruin Wickfield but is later undone by Mr Micawber. On their first meeting, David describes him as "a red-haired person - a youth of fifteen, as I take it now, but looking much older - whose hair was cropped as close as the closest stubble; who had hardly any eyebrows, and no eyelashes, and eyes of a red-brown, so unsheltered and unshaded, that I remember wondering how he went to sleep. He was high-shouldered and bony; dressed in decent black, with a white wisp of a neckcloth; buttoned up to the throat; and had a long, lank, skeleton hand, which particularly attracted my attention, as he stood at the pony's head, rubbing his chin with it, and looking up at us in the chaise. He had a way of writhing when he wanted to express enthusiasm, which was very ugly" Uriah Heep, wonderfully hideous, is one of Dickens' greatest triumphs in character creation. His description of Heep's writhing and scheming, and his cold, clammy nature, makes one's skin crawl.
Female revolutionist and friend of Madame Defarge. She is described as 'a short, rather plump wife of a starved grocer'. At the final execution she is left pondering the absence of Madame Defarge.
Richard Carstone's solicitor in Symond's Inn, recommended by Skimpole, who lures Richard deeper into the Chancery case that will ultimately lead to Richard's despair and death.
Manager of a touring stage company who employs and befriends Nicholas Nickleby and Smike. Described as having "a very full under- lip, a hoarse voice, as though he were in the habit of shouting very much, and very short black hair, shaved off nearly to the crown of his head--to admit (as he afterwards learnt) of his more easily wearing character wigs of any shape or pattern."
Poor relation of Sir Leicester Dedlock. 'Rouged and necklaced' hanger-on at Chesney Wold.
Son of schoolmaster Wackford Squeers. Little Wackford is kept fat as an advertisement of the supposed plenty provided at the school. He is spoiled by being given any gifts intended for pupils of the school by their families.
Proprietor of Dotheboys Hall, he took in boys who were not wanted by their families and mistreated them. Nicholas Nickleby becomes his assistant master but sees the way he treats his charges, gives him a sound thrashing, and leaves. Squeers seeks revenge and conspires with Ralph Nickleby. He is eventually undone, imprisoned, and transported.
Tyrannical father of Madeline. Heavily in debt, and living in the Rules of the King's Bench debtor's prison, he promises his daughter's hand in marriage to Arthur Gride in return for the forgiveness of his debt to Gride and Ralph Nickleby. He dies on the morning of the wedding thus saving Madeline from the unwanted marriage.
Sol Gill's nephew, he is employed in the house of Dombey and Son. Walter befriends Florence Dombey and her father is displeased and sends him to the firm's branch in Barbados. The ship in which he sails is lost and Sol goes to search for him. Walter returns and marries Florence. Mr Dombey, after the failure of the house, goes to live with Walter and Florence.
Yeoman farmer and owner of Manor Farm at Dingley Dell. Pickwick and his friends visit Manor Farm frequently. Wardle's daughter marries Pickwickian Augustus Snodgrass. Jingle tries to elope with Miss Rachel, Wardle's sister, but is caught and bought off by Wardle.
Enters the story when David takes lodging at his home. Continually in debt and looking for "something to turn up" he ends up in debtor's prison. On his release he rambles through the story in various occupations eventually employed at Mr Wickfield's office where he exposes the dastardly deeds of Uriah Heep. In gratitude for this his debts are paid and he emigrates to Australia, where he prospers. David describes him as "a stoutish, middle-aged person, in a brown surtout and black tights and shoes, with no more hair upon his head (which was a large one, and very shining) than there is upon an egg, and with a very extensive face. His clothes were shabby, but he had an imposing shirt-collar on. He carried a jaunty sort of a stick, with a large pair of rusty tassels to it; and a quizzing-glass hung outside his coat, - for ornament, I afterwards found, as he very seldom looked through it, and couldn't see anything when he did". The character is drawn heavily on Dickens' father.
Country laboror who comes to London with his niece Lillian to look for work. He is arrested for vagrancy and branded a troublemaker. He and Lillian run into Trotty Veck in the street and Trotty takes them in for the night. Will and Lillian's presence help to spark Trotty's dream in which Will becomes a desperate arsonist and Lillian a prostitute.
Father of Amy (title character), Fanny, and Edward, and long-time inmate of the Marshalsea debtor's prison. He inherits an estate and leaves the prison, traveling in style with his daughters. After his death Amy learns that his fortune has been lost in the Merdle banking scam.
Clerk for Kenge and Carboy. Proposes marriage to Esther Summerson which she refuses. Guppy is involved in the investigation of Lady Dedlock's secret.
Caretaker of the university where Redlaw teaches chemistry. His family is adversely effected by Redlaw's gift of forgetting past sorrows. The adverse effects of this 'gift' are finally reversed by William's wife, Milly.
Parish clerk and friend of the Gargerys. He aspires to enter the church but instead becomes an actor with the stage name of Waldengarver. Pip sees him perform Hamlet in London.
One of the turnkeys (jailors) at the Marshalsea. Young John loves Amy Dorrit and assists in finding her father's fortune.
Unscrupulous agent of the Eden Land Corporation who sells swamp land to Martin. "He was a gaunt man in a huge straw hat, and a coat of green stuff. The weather being hot, he had no cravat, and wore his shirt collar wide open; so that every time he spoke something was seen to twitch and jerk up in his throat, like the little hammers in a harpsichord when the notes are struck. Perhaps it was the Truth feebly endeavouring to leap to his lips. If so, it never reached them."