THE UNCOMMERCIAL TRAVELLER - by Charles DICKENS
Sub-titled "A Series of Occasional Papers", this is a new issue of the 1860 Tauchnitz edition that was published one year before the London version of this highly original anthology. Fiction and non-fiction combined, Dickens takes us on a journey through stories both true and fabricated which is just as intriguing as any of his straight fiction books.
"I think Dickens is one of the best friends that mankind has ever had." George Santayana
The 'Tauchnitz Edition': This deep-searching and personal series of Essays and Tales, mixing Semi-Autobiography with Fiction and Personal Observations of life, originally appeared in the periodical 'All the Year Round', for which Dickens was working at the time. It is one of the most revealing works he ever wrote, for here we meet Charles Dickens the man, not just the writer, a person of great character. - This edition is of interest to scholars because it presents the original 1860 Bernhard Tauchnitz Edition which was published one year before the Chapman and Hall London Edition of the work (1861). There are significant differences between them, which can be detected even in variations on the contents page.
Testimony to this work and Dickens's Genius:
"Dicken's triumph is not that of a prose novelist, closely observing man in society : it is that of a Maker, a dramatic and epic poet of inns and parlours, fog and street lamps, a mythopoetic genius." J.B. Priestley
"This is the Real Charles Dickens, a Dickens that I never knew before." Bernhard Tauchnitz
"His genius was his fellow-feeling with his race; his mere personality was never the bound or limit to his perceptions.” John Forster
"... for Mr. Dickens is the greatest of all writers." Feodor Dostoyevsky
Features of this Edition: A Preface about Dickens and this work by Edouard d'Araille; an Introduction by G.K. Chesterton; a Select Bibliography; a Portrait of the Author (Photograph); and the Complete Original Text of 'The Uncommercial Traveller'.
Contents of Dickens's Work: Because of the particular interest that Dickens Scholars will have in the variations between the 1860 Tauchnitz Edition and the 1861 Chapman and Hall Edition, here is a list of the chapter titles of the Tauchnitz Edition, from which you will see that several of them do in fact differ significantly from those from one year later:
Journey I - Wreck of the Royal Charter / Journey II - The Poor Law in Wapping / Journey III - A Sermon in Britannia Theatre / Journey IV - Waiting for Jack in Liverpool / Journey V - Travels in Search of Refreshment / Journey VI - The German Chariot / Journey VII - Great Tasmania Enquiry / Journey VIII - Visit to the City Churches / Journey IX - Shy Neighbourhoods / Journey X – Tramps / Journey XI - Associations of Childhood / Journey XII – Houselessness / Journey XIII - Living in Chambers / Journey XIV - Nurses' Stories / Journey XV - London out of Season / Journey XVI - The Italian Prisoner
An Extract - Dickens's Opening Words: "The Uncommercial Traveller - Allow me to introduce myself - first negatively. No landlord is my friend and brother, no chambermaid loves me, no waiter worships me, no boots admires and envies me. No round of beef or tongue or ham is expressly cooked for me, no pigeon-pie is especially made for me, no hotel-advertisement is personally addressed to me, no hotel-room tapestried with greatcoats and railway wrappers is set apart for me, no house of public entertainment in the United Kingdom greatly cares for my opinion of its brandy or sherry. When I go upon my journeys, I am not usually rated at a low figure in the bill; when I come home from my journeys, I never get any commission. I know nothing about prices, and should have no idea, if I were put to it, how to wheedle a man into ordering something he doesn't want. As a town traveller, I am never to be seen driving a vehicle externally like a young and volatile pianoforte van, and internally like an oven in which a number of flat boxes are baking in layers. As a country traveller, I am rarely to be found in a gig, and am never to be encountered...".