George Cruikshank

1792 (London) – 1878 (London)

Cruikshank taught the novelist (and his good friend and admirer) Thackeray etching; Thackeray helped him out with money and wrote about him. He worked closely with Dickens, acting in his amateur theatre company and establishing for later generations the look of the times through his work on Oliver Twist in particular; though 20 years of friendship was destroyed by their quarrel about creative control and through the heavy drinker Cruikshank’s conversion to fanatical teetotalism. Ruskin, a friend, championed his work. Cruikshank told Mayhew, another collaborator, that he’d modelled Fagin’s expression on his own.

George Cruikshank knew…