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The Lazy Tour Of Two Idle Apprentices

“I do not know the American gentleman, God forgive me for putting two such words together.”

The Lazy Tour Of Two Idle Apprentices by Charles Dickens
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“In the autumn month of September, eighteen hundred and fifty-seven, wherein these presents bear date, two idle apprentices, exhausted by the long, hot summer and the long, hot work it had brought with it, ran away from their employer.” Thus starts The Lazy Tour of Two Idle Apprentices (1857) written in collaboration between the two renowned Victorian novelists Charles Dickens and Wilkie Collins. Before the book took the form of a novella, it was serialized in Dickens’s periodical Household Words. It tells the story of two idle young men who are actually nothing but caricatures of the two authors themselves. They both go on a trip to Cumberland in North West England and start speaking about their adventures there. While the fictional Thomas Idle stands for Collins, Francis Goodchild stands for Dickens. For Francis, idleness is to spend one’s time without doing anything of significant importance while Thomas decides, after a number of misadventures, that activity is the root of all evil and that the only way to remain safe is to do absolutely nothing. Generally, the book is the authors’ very enjoyable satire of themselves and of each other although it also includes some reflections on social issues such as poverty and class differences.

Copyright Group; August 2013
73 pages; ISBN 9781780006406
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Title: The Lazy Tour Of Two Idle Apprentices
Author: Charles Dickens