John Dicks (publisher)

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Cover of Cottin's Elizabeth or the Exiles of Siberia, published by John Dicks, Strand, London, circa 1880s.

John Thomas Dicks (1818–1881) was a publisher in London in the 19th century. He issued popular, affordably priced fiction and drama, such as "shilling Shakespeares and wonderfully cheap reprints of Scott and other standard authors."[1] Earlier in his career he worked with Peter Perring Thoms and George W. M. Reynolds.[1] Employees included illustrator Frederick Gilbert.[2] Readers included Thomas Burt and Havelock Ellis.[3] Dicks retired in the 1870s, when his sons took over the firm[4] which continued into the 1960s.[5][6]

Works issued by John Dicks[edit]

  • Musical Treasures (sheet music series); numbered list


Dicks' Standard Plays[edit]

  • Dicks' Standard Plays, 1874–1907 (series)[6]
  • List of Dicks' Standard Plays and Free Acting Drama, 1883, OL 7225611M – arranged by number, title, author (Ainsworth, Dickens, Lytton, Scott, etc.), and theme (nautical, dumb hero, ghost, Irish, Scotch, military, temperance, fairy, equestrian, etc.)
List of Dicks' Standard Plays
Number Title Author Image Fulltext
10 Iron Chest George Colman Cover
14 Honeymoon John Tobin Internet Archive
354 Alice Gray, the suspected one John T. Haines HathiTrust
368 Factory Assassin [7]
388 Bleak House George Lander, adapted from Charles Dickens [8]
398 Old Curiosity Shop George Lander, adapted from Charles Dickens [8]
400 Jane Eyre Cover
409 Culprit; and, The boarding school HathiTrust
460 Black Doctor [9] Ira Aldridge
465 St. Patrick's Day Richard Brinsley Sheridan Internet Archive
469 Nicholas Nickleby H. Simms, adapted from Charles Dickens [8]
485 Yew tree ruins John Thomas Haines Cover Hathi Trust
561 Pic-Nic and The Railway Hotel Google Books
571 Infant Phenomenon [10] H. Horncastle, adapted from Charles Dickens [8]
571 Captain Cuttle [10] John Brougham [8]
626 Jane, the Licensed Victualler's Daughter J.P. Hart
636 Bardell & Pickwick [10] Adapted from Charles Dickens [8]
641 Factory Boy [7] John Thomas Haines
666 Bringing Home the Bride Bringing Home the Bride no666 Dicks Standard Plays.png Google Books
669 Angeline Angeline no669 Dicks Standard Plays.png Google Books
671 Noyades Noyades no671 Dicks Standard Plays.png Google Books
673 Love, Law and Physic Love Law and Physic no673 Dicks Standard Plays.png Google Books
790 Factory Strike [7] G.F. Taylor
809 Lesson for Ladies John Baldwin Buckstone HathiTrust
898 Court Beauties James Planché
930 Factory Lad [7] John Walker
1001 Battle of Life [10] Adapted from Charles Dickens
1004 Nine too many J.B. Buckstone HathiTrust
1004 Wigwam Shirley Brooks HathiTrust
1052 No Thoroughfare [11]



Bow Bells, 1866 (with illustration of "Mangold in the fangs of the lion")



  1. ^ a b "Obituary", The Bookseller, 3 March 1881, hdl:2027/mdp.39015011421453
  2. ^ "Frederick Gilbert". Yesterday's Papers (blog). 2010. Retrieved July 4, 2014.
  3. ^ Richard D. Altick (1958). "From Aldine to Everyman: Cheap Reprint Series of the English Classics 1830-1906". Studies in Bibliography. 11: 3–24. JSTOR 40371227.
  4. ^ a b c Christopher Mark Banham (2009). "John Dicks". In Laurel Brake and Marysa Demoor (ed.). Dictionary of Nineteenth-century Journalism in Great Britain and Ireland. Academia Press. ISBN 978-90-382-1340-8.
  5. ^ Literary Year-Book. G. Routledge and Sons. 1915.
  6. ^ a b Department of Early Printed Books (2012). "Dicks' Standard Plays". Tales of Mystery and Pagination (blog). Dublin: Trinity College Library. Retrieved July 4, 2014.
  7. ^ a b c d Sally Vernon (1977). "Trouble up at t'Mill: The Rise and Decline of the Factory Play in the 1830s and 1840s". Victorian Studies. 20 (2): 117–139. JSTOR 3826152.
  8. ^ a b c d e f Frederic George Kitton (1886). Dickensiana: a bibliography of the literature relating to Charles Dickens and his writings. G. Redway.
  9. ^ Bernth Lindfors (2007). Ira Aldridge, the African Roscius. University Rochester Press. ISBN 978-1-58046-258-7.
  10. ^ a b c d "Dramatized Works of Charles Dickens", List of Dicks' Standard Plays, 1883
  11. ^ "Wilkie Collins". Victorian Web. Retrieved July 4, 2014.
  12. ^ a b c Victor E. Neuburg (2013) [1977]. "1800–1897". Popular Literature: A History and Guide. Routledge. ISBN 978-1-136-89434-3.
  13. ^ Michael Ashley; William Contento (1995). The Supernatural Index: A Listing of Fantasy, Supernatural, Occult, Weird, and Horror Anthologies. Greenwood Publishing Group. ISBN 978-0-313-24030-0.

Further reading[edit]

  • Guy Dicks (2006). The John Dicks Press. ISBN 978-1-4116-4285-0.
  • "Dicks, John Thomas". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography.
  • Modern English Biography. 2 (supplement). 1908.
  • British Publishing Houses: 1820–1880. 1991.
  • Waterloo Directory of English Newspapers and Periodicals
  • "Death of Mr. John Thomas Dicks", Reynolds's Newspaper, 13 February 1881
  • "John Dicks, Publisher", Times Literary Supplement, 7 November 1942

External links[edit]