Pictures from Italy


Pictures from Italy

In 1844 Charles Dickens (1812–70) and his family moved to Italy for a year, eventually settling in Genoa. This book, Dickens' second travel memoir, describes his experience of travelling through France and exploring Italy. Based on letters to friends, particularly John Forster, it was first published in instalments from January to March 1846 in the Daily News (a new radical newspaper which Dickens himself founded and briefly edited). The edition in book form reissued here appeared in May 1846. The main focus of the book is the northern regions of Italy, including Tuscany, Milan and Venice. It also includes substantial sections on Rome and Naples as well as a brief sketch of Switzerland. Landscapes, architecture, lodgings and food are described with selective but penetrating detail. The shrewd social observations characteristic of Dickens' novels are found here, especially in his critical remarks about poverty, popular religion and the Catholic clergy.

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