Explore the museum

Discover Dickens through his work, his home and the things that mattered to him most

Catherine's Cookbook

This is a recipe book, written by Charles Dickens's wife, Catherine, under the pen-name 'Lady Maria Clutterbuck.' 

Ignorance and Want

Scrooge confronts the children 'Ignorance' and 'Want.'

Sketch of the Ghost of Christmas Present

Sketch of Jacob Marley

Scrooge, illustrated here for the very first time, being confronted with the ghost of Jacob Marley.

Trial edition of 'A Christmas Carol'

A trial edition of 'A Christmas Carol' in which Dickens played with the idea of changing the font colour.

Oliver Twist asks for more

Illustration by George Cruikshank

Playbill for 'A Christmas Carol'

This playbill from February 1844 advertises the very first adaptation of 'A Christmas Carol.' Discussed by Cindy, Frankie and Emma in episode one.

Affairs of the Heart

Letter, from Charles Dickens to Georgina Hogarth, 29 October 1868


Charles often decided to ‘tone down’ Wilkie's writing to ensure they wouldn’t offend middle-class readers.

Unfinished Works

The Mystery of Edwin Drood, 1870

Reconsidered Corrections

The Frozen Deep, annotated by Wilkie Collins, 1866

Musical Accompaniment

Overture to 'The Frozen Deep,' 1857

The Frozen Deep

Photograph of the Charles Dickens-Wilkie Collins Dramatic Company, 1857

A Final Story

Incomplete draft of 'Tom Tiddler's Gound' 1861

Satellite of Jupiter

Joining the Household Words made Wilkie’s professional subordination to Charles official – ‘one of the satellites of Jupiter’, as a contemporary reviewer put it.

As Close as Family

Here Charles lies on the grass relaxing with family and friends, including Wilkie second on the left, distinguishable by his beard.

Best Friends

Charles invites Wilkie to Brighton, clearly wanting his best friend to cheer him up on his special day.

A Flattering Caricature

Object in focus: print of Dickens being received by the Edinburgh literati

The Amazing Conjuring of Characters

Object in focus: ‘Dickens the Great Magician’ by Kyd (Joseph Clayton Clarke)

The All-Important Prop

Object in focus: Ivory paper knife owned by Dickens

The Difficulty of Capturing Dickens

Object in focus: Manuscript letter from William Powell Frith

Drawn by new technologies

Object in focus: Drawing of Dickens by Mr Maskelyne's Automaton ZOE


Object in focus: Wardrobe

What shall we have for dinner?

Object in focus: What shall we have for dinner?

Bell System

Object in focus: Bell system

Blacking Bottle

Object in focus: Blacking bottle

Account Book

Object in focus: Account book

Carte de visite

Object in focus: Carte de visite


Object in focus: Candlesticks

Dickens's Desk

Object in focus: Dickens's desk


Object in focus: Armchair

Court Suit

Object in focus: Court suit

Charles Dickens's Will

Object in focus: Charles Dickens's will


Object in focus: Copper

Hall Clock

Object in focus: Hall clock

The Children by Daniel Maclise

Object in focus: The Children by Daniel Maclise

Bentley’s Miscellany

Object in focus: Bentley's Miscellany

First edition of 'A Christmas Carol'

Object in focus: First edition of A Christmas Carol

Portrait of Charles Dickens

Object in focus: Portrait of Charles Dickens

Ivory theatre pass

Object in focus: Ivory theatre pass

Letter from Charles Dickens to Frederick Ouvry

Object in focus: Letter from Charles Dickens to Frederick Ouvry

Mantel Pelmet

Object in focus: Mantel Pelmet

Marriage License

Object in focus: Marriage license

Nicholas Nickleby Manuscript

Object in focus: Nicholas Nickleby manuscript

Nickleby Illustrations

Object in focus: Nickleby illustrations

Photograph of Dickens’s Gad’s Hill Servants

Object in focus: Photograph of Dickens’s Gad’s Hill servants

Portraits of Catherine and Charles Dickens by Samuel Laurence

Object in focus: Portraits of Catherine and Charles Dickens by Samuel Laurence

Portraits of Charles Dickens

Object in focus: Portraits of Charles Dickens by Alfred D'Orsay

Print block for ‘Fezziwig’s Ball’

Object in focus: Print block for ‘Fezziwig’s Ball’

Pickwick Club Punch Ladles

Object in focus: Pickwick club punch ladles
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