Friends of the Dickens Forum,
Robert Tracy <[log in to unmask]
>, continues to
surprise us with the breadth of
his interests. Respondents will do us all a favor by identifying
the MC edition carrying
the Phiz cover they use. Our editions are of no help.
[log in to unmask]"
Dear Colleagues: I have been studying the cover Phiz designed for the parts
publication of CHUZZLEWIT. I can see how the rich baby on the Left and the
poor baby on the Right set the tone for the spindles that are tangled with
roses (L ) and thin leaves (R), and prepare us for the Three Fates at
bottom with their scissors and ball of yarn to measure out lives. Can
anyone explain why the Fates are also apparently whipping a short male
figure shaped like a top (are they whipping the top to make it spin?)? I
get the bird of paradise (or peacock?) on the Left and the ill-omened owl
(R) on a gallows, and the two-faced man admiring himself in a three way
mirror prepares us for Pecksniff. But what about the man at bottom Right,
also two-faced? And what is the coin behind him. I can make out the words
DEI GRATIA and REX, but can someone with better eyes than mine tell me what
the other words are? There is a female profile beside the coin (Victoria?
but then, why REX? or is it Britania, and if so, why without her helmet?)
I'm guessing the coin is a penny, but minted under which REX?
Any assistance will be gratefully received.