The Amazing Conjuring of Characters
Dickens’s conception of his huge range of characters was a popular subject for artists. The author – who was himself a ﬁne amateur magician – is imagined here as a wizard, calling up characters from a ﬁery cauldron by means of an oversized quill pen.
The artist Kyd produced a large number of sketches of Dickens characters, which were published in magazines or sold as watercolour paintings. His imagining the author’s inspiration as magical is a testament to Dickens’s creative powers.
Kyd (Joseph Clayton Clarke), Dickens the Great Magician. Watercolour, c.1880s.
DH844 © Charles Dickens Museum.
Purchased with support from the National Heritage Monument Trust, the Art Fund, Friends of the National Libraries and the Dickens Fellowship.