Pictures from Italy

Front Cover
Penguin, Jul 1, 1998 - Travel - 272 pages
14 Reviews
After Martin Chuzzlewit was published in 1844, Dickens deliberately took a break from novels to travel in Italy for almost a year.

Bored by many traditional tourist sites and repelled by the greed and empty rituals of the Catholic church, Dickens is far more attracted by urban desolation, the colourful life of the streets and visible signs of the nation's richly textured past. He is especially drawn to the costumes, cross-dressing and sheer exuberant energy of the Roman carnival. Although seldom overtly political,Pictures from Italy often touches on the corruption and cruelty of Italian history, the grinding poverty and a sense of continuing oppression lurking just below the surface. A thrilling travelogue which is also deeply revealing about its author's current anxieties and concerns, this neglected work deserves a secure place among the masterpieces of Dickens's maturity.

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Review: Pictures from Italy

User Review  - Goodreads

Oh Chuck, he was like a very snarky but charming dinner guest in his descriptions of Italy. It could have been coming from the dear Dowager Countess of Grantham's mouth herself. I did enjoy it, he was very descriptive and it is nice to be so descriptive about a world that is completely gone to us. Read full review

Review: Pictures from Italy

User Review  - Goodreads, I'm not a huge fan of this small series I just really don't enjoy his point of view. Obviously lots of Christian overtones. Read full review

Selected pages


The Readers Passport
Going through France
Lyons the Rhone and the Goblin of Avignon
Avignon to Genoa
Through Bologna and Ferrara
An Italian Dream
By Verona Mantua and Milan across the Pass of the Simplon into Switzerland
To Rome by Pisa and Siena
A Rapid Diorama
Explanatory Notes
APPENDIXThe Italian Prisoner

Genoa and its Neighbourhood
To Parma Modena and Bologna

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About the author (1998)

Charles Dickens was born on February 7, 1812, in Landport, Portsea, England. He died in Kent on June 9, 1870. The second of eight children of a family continually plagued by debt, the young Dickens came to know not only hunger and privation,but also the horror of the infamous debtors’ prison and the evils of child labor. A turn of fortune in the shape of a legacy brought release from the nightmare of prison and “slave” factories and afforded Dickens the opportunity of two years’ formal schooling at Wellington House Academy. He worked as an attorney’s clerk and newspaper reporter until his Sketches by Boz (1836) and The Pickwick Papers (1837) brought him the amazing and instant success that was to be his for the remainder of his life. In later years, the pressure of serial writing, editorial duties, lectures, and social commitments led to his separation from Catherine Hogarth after twenty-three years of marriage. It also hastened his death at the age of fifty-eight, when he was characteristically engaged in a multitude of work.

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