Mr Bumble, Mr Pickwick and Mr Micawber are all instantly recognisable creations of Charles Dickens, one of Britain’s greatest novelists. To commemorate the bicentenary of Dickens’ birth Royal Mail is celebrating his life and work of with ten new stamps issued today.
The stamps feature iconic characters from some of Dickens’ most famous novels, including Mr Bumble from Oliver Twist, Mr Micawber from David Copperfield and Captain Cuttle from Dombey and Son. Six of the stamps feature original illustrations adapted from Character Sketches from Charles Dickens, by Joseph Clayton Clarke (otherwise known as Kyd) and originally published around 1890.
Royal Mail is also issuing a miniature sheet of four stamps of illustrations by Hablot Knight Brown (known as Phiz), who illustrated ten books by Dickens.
The presentation pack that accompanies the issue is written by Lucinda Dickens Hawksley, who takes a look at her great, great, great grandfather’s life and works.
Charles Dickens or his work has appeared on three previous stamp issues: Literary Anniversaries (1970), Christmas (150th Anniversary of A Christmas Carol, 1993) and Musicals (Oliver! 2011).
Two first day of issue handstamps are available with the new Charles Dickens stamps. One features Dickens’ initials and Dickens’ sometime pseudonym “Boz”, the other features a book design.
The Charles Dickens stamps and stamp products are available at all Post Office branches, online and from Royal Mail Tallents House (tel. 08457 641 641), 21 South Gyle Crescent, Edinburgh, EH12 9PB.