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Top 10 best-loved Dickens characters


Ebenezer Scrooge is top of the pops in a new poll to celebrate the 200th anniversary of Charles Dickens' birth today. The shortlist, voted for by Penguin readers, indicates a clear love of villains and outcasts among the top 10 most popular Dickensian characters. After party-pooper Ebenezer comes the heartbroken Miss Havisham, with Sydney Carton from A Tale Of Two Cities in third place. Come see who else made the cut - as chosen by 833 people voting on the Penguin website - below.

Picture credit: Rex Features

Ebenezer Scrooge - A Christmas Carol

"If I could work my will, every idiot who goes about with 'Merry Christmas' on his lips, should be boiled with his own pudding, and buried with a stake of holly through his heart. He should!"

Miss Havisham - Great Expectations

"Love her, love her, love her! If she favours you, love her. If she wounds you, love her. If she tears your heart to pieces – and as it gets older and stronger, it will tear deeper – love her, love her, love her!"

Sydney Carton - A Tale Of Two Cities

"I am a disappointed drudge, sir. I care for no man on earth, and no man on earth cares for me."

The Artful Dodger - Oliver Twist

"You may start by jappaning my trotter case. In plain English, clean my boots."

Fagin - Oliver Twist

"When the boy is worth a hundred pounds to me, am I to lose what chance threw me in the way of getting safely, through the whims of a drunken gang that I could whistle away the lives of! And me bound, too, to a born devil, that only wants the will and has the power."

Joe Gargery - Great Expectations

"Pip, dear old chap, life is made of ever so many partings welded together, as I may say, and one man’s a blacksmith, and one’s a whitesmith, and one’s a goldsmith, and one’s a coppersmith. Diwisions among such must come, and must be met as they come."

Pip - Great Expectations

"'Estella,' said I, turning to her now, and trying to command my trembling voice, 'you know I love you. You know that I have loved you long and dearly.'"

Nancy - Oliver Twist

"I am chained to my old life. I loathe and hate it now, but I cannot leave it. I must have gone too far to turn back - and yet I don't know, for if you had spoken to me so, some time ago, I should have laughed it off"

Abel Magwitch - Great Expectations

"Yes, Pip, dear boy, I've made a gentleman on you! It's me wot has done it! I swore that time, sure as ever I earned a guinea, that guinea should go to you."

Betsey Trotwood - David Copperfield

"'Never,' said my aunt, 'be mean in anything; never be false; never be cruel. Avoid those three vices, Trot, and I can always be hopeful of you.'"



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