Vignette: Betteredge amd his dog — uncaptioned vignette for the "The Story. Second Period. Eighth Narrative. Contributed by Gabriel Betteredge" — forty-seventh illustration in the Doubleday (New York) 1946 edition of The Moonstone, p. 437. 7 x 10.3 cm. [Without the Verinder family in residence, Betteredge can relax with his dogs, his pipe, and his beloved Robinson Crusoe.] Scanned image and text by Philip V. Allingham. [You may use this image without prior permission for any scholarly or educational purpose as long as you (1) credit the person who scanned the image and (2) link your document to this URL.]

Passage Illustrated

I am the person (as you remember no doubt) who led the way in these pages, and opened the story. I am also the person who is left behind, as it were, to close the story up.

Let nobody suppose that I have any last words to say here concerning the Indian Diamond. I hold that unlucky jewel in abhorrence — and I refer you to other authority than mine, for such news of the Moonstone as you may, at the present time, be expected to receive. My purpose, in this place, is to state a fact in the history of the family, which has been passed over by everybody, and which I won’t allow to be disrespectfully smothered up in that way. The fact to which I allude is — the marriage of Miss Rachel and Mr. Franklin Blake. This interesting event took place at our house in Yorkshire, on Tuesday, October ninth, eighteen hundred and forty-nine. I had a new suit of clothes on the occasion. And the married couple went to spend the honeymoon in Scotland.

Family festivals having been rare enough at our house, since my poor mistress’s death, I own — on this occasion of the wedding — to having (towards the latter part of the day) taken a drop too much on the strength of it.

If you have ever done the same sort of thing yourself you will understand and feel for me. If you have not, you will very likely say, “Disgusting old man! why does he tell us this?” The reason why is now to come.

Having, then, taken my drop (bless you! you have got your favourite vice, too; only your vice isn’t mine, and mine isn't yours), I next applied the one infallible remedy — that remedy being, as you know, Robinson Crusoe. Where I opened that unrivalled book, I can’t say. Where the lines of print at last left off running into each other, I know, however, perfectly well. — "Second Period. The Discovery of the Truth (1848-1849), Eighth Narrative, Contributed by Gabriel Betteredge," p. 436.


Rounding out the story with the return of Sergeant Cuff, the Indians, and Betteredge, Collins focuses at last on the fortunes of Franklin Blake. By his father's death and his marriage to heiress Rachel Verinder, Blake has joined the realm's richest and most powerful men. But his suffering and his friendship with Ezra Jennings have ennobled him in a way that mere inheritance cannot. The Harper's illustrator re-introduced Betteredge much earlier, when Franklin Blake had returned from his eastern wanderings, "The old man quieted them by a word, and then shaded his failing eyes with his hand," etc. (23 May 1868, p. 325). The Harper's Weekly illustration positions Betteredge, as it were, on the lookout, whereas Sharp underscores his reading a large volume. In the "Second Period. The Discovery of the Truth (1848-1849). Third Narrative. Contributed by Franklin Blake," the Harper's illustrator does not surround Betteredge with the comforts of the steward's lodge, creating an entirely different atmosphere.

The relevant wood-engraving from the 1868 Edition: The upper room at The Wheel of Fortune.

Above: The scene that greets Franklin Blake on the Verinder estate, "The old man quieted them by a word, and then shaded his failing eyes with his hand," etc. (23 May 1868). [Click on the image to enlarge it.]

Related Materials


Collins, Wilkie. The Moonstone: A Romance. with sixty-six illustrations. Harper's Weekly: A Journal of Civilization. Vol. 12 (1868), 4 January through 8 August, pp. 5-503.

Collins, Wilkie. The Moonstone: A Romance. All the Year Round. 1 January-8 August 1868.

_________. The Moonstone: A Novel. With many illustrations. First edition. New York: Harper and Brothers, [July] 1868.

_________. The Moonstone: A Novel. With 19 illustrations. Second edition. New York: Harper and Brothers, 1874.

_________. The Moonstone: A Romance. Illustrated by George Du Maurier and F. A. Fraser. London: Chatto and Windus, 1890.

_________. The Moonstone. With 19 illustrations. The Works of Wilkie Collins. New York: Peter Fenelon Collier, 1900. Volumes 6 and 7.

_________. The Moonstone: A Romance. With four illustrations by John Sloan. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1908.

_________. The Moonstone: A Romance. Illustrated by A. S. Pearse. London & Glasgow: Collins, 1910, rpt. 1930.

_________. The Moonstone. Illustrated by William Sharp. New York: Doubleday, 1946.

_________. The Moonstone: A Romance. With nine illustrations by Edwin La Dell. London: Folio Society, 1951.

Karl, Frederick R. "Introduction." Wilkie Collins's The Moonstone. Scarborough, Ontario: Signet, 1984. Pp. 1-21.

Leighton, Mary Elizabeth, and Lisa Surridge. "The Transatlantic Moonstone: A Study of the Illustrated Serial in Harper's Weekly." Victorian Periodicals Review Volume 42, Number 3 (Fall 2009): pp. 207-243. Accessed 1 July 2016.

Nayder, Lillian. Unequal Partners: Charles Dickens, Wilkie Collins, & Victorian Authorship. London and Ithaca, NY: Cornll U. P., 2001.

Peters, Catherine. The King of the Inventors: A Life of Wilkie Collins. London: Minerva, 1991.

Reed, John R. "English Imperialism and the Unacknowledged crime of The Moonstone. Clio 2, 3 (June, 1973): 281-290.

Stewart, J. I. M. "Introduction." Wilkie Collins's The Moonstone. Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1966, rpt. 1973. Pp. 7-24.

Stewart, J. I. M. "A Note on Sources." Wilkie Collins's The Moonstone. Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1966, rpt. 1973. Pp. 527-8.

Vann, J. Don. "The Moonstone in All the Year Round, 4 January-8 1868." Victorian Novels in Serial. New York: Modern Language Association, 1985. Pp. 48-50.

Winter, William. "Wilkie Collins." Old Friends: Being Literary Recollections of Other Days. New York: Moffat, Yard, & Co., 1909. Pp. 203-219.

Last updated 4 November 2016