Between 1833 and 1836, the Victorian writer Charles Dickens wrote a number of sketches which were originally published in various newspapers and other periodicals including The Morning Chronicle, The Evening Chronicle, The Monthly Magazine, The Carlton Chronicle and Bell’s Weekly Messenger. Many were published under the pen name of Boz, which Dickens adopted early on in his career as a writer and journalist. The popular sketches were reproduced in 1836 in a collected work, Sketches by Boz, which contained 56 sketches divided into four sections: Our Parish (7 sketches) Scenes (25 sketches), Characters (12 sketches) and Tales (12 sketches). The material in the first three sections consists of portraits of London life and the last section comprised fictional stories.
Background. "The crowd were on the tiptoe of expectation." is a quotation from Sketches by Boz, Characters, Chapter 12 (The Prisoners’ Van). Sketches by Boz is a collection of short pieces written by Charles Dickens and published as a book in 1836. Context. A crowd, gathered outside London's Bow Street Magistrates Court, eagerly await prisoners disembarking from a van that has brought them to be charged at the Court. Taken from the following passage in The Prisoners’ Van: The [...]