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SparkNotes: Oliver Twist: Character List

A list of all the characters in Oliver Twist

Fagin, with the help of Monks, tries to recover Oliver but is thwarted. Fagin's gang is broken up by the police and Fagin is arrested. Sikes kills Nancy in a moment of anger over her betrayal of the gang, but is himself killed while trying to escape.


Oliver Twist Characters | GradeSaver

Oliver Twist is one the most famous and influential work of Dickens: it was the first novel in English to have a boy as the protagonist and one of the first examples of the social novel. It was also unique at the time for its un-romanticized portrayal of the lives of criminals and the poor. With irreverent black humor, the novel examines nineteenth-century English society's ills: poverty, child labor, urban crime, and the inherent hypocrisy of Victorian culture.

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Oliver's true origins are eventually discovered. Mr. Brownlow turns out to be an old friend of Oliver's father, and Monks is actually Oliver's half brother. Rose is actually Oliver's aunt and his deceased-mother's sister.

Charles Dickens: Charles Dickens was the greatest novelist of the Victorian era, a keen social critic, and a popular entertainer.

Oliver Twist Summary - Charles Dickens

One day the gang robs Mr. Brownlow, and Oliver takes the opportunity to run away from the group and is taken in by Mr. Brownlow. However he is then recaptured by the gang of thieves and persuaded to work as a thief by the mysterious and troubling Monks. But Oliver's first mission goes badly: he is sent to rob the house of Mrs. Maylie and her adopted granddaughter, Rose, but is injured during the mission. Oliver is treated by Mrs. Maylie and Rose who show compassion towards the little thief.

Oliver’s “Twist” on the Hero’s Journey | Long Story Little

Oliver now begins an underground, nocturnal, life together with his companions: , the Artful Dodger, Claypole, and most importantly Nancy, who is a thief and a prostitute but basically a good person who has been led astray by Fagin and her lover, the violent Bill Sikes. Nancy, affectionately known to Fagin's boys as "Nance" and Bill Sykes were both old pupils of Fagin. Oliver also comes under the influence of the mysterious Monks, another thief, who has some unknown connection to Oliver. It is later revealed that Monks has paid Fagin to keep Oliver in his clutches and turn him into a thief, as part of Monks' secret plan to destroy him.

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Oliver is then sent to work at a funeral home. Here, too, he is treated very badly. One day Oliver escapes and flees to London, where he gets involved with a gang of thieves and pickpockets headed by Fagin, a satanic character and corrupter of young boys.

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Oliver is an orphan who lives until the age of nine in a poorhouse, where he goes hungry and suffers abuse by the Director, Mr. Bumble. The classic scene in which the half starved Oliver begs for some more food and is viciously denied by the obese Mr. Bumble exemplifies the inequity of Victorian society.

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Everything ends well: Oliver is adopted by Mr. Brownlow. Claypole and the Artful Dodger leave their life of crime; Claypole becomes a respectable farmer and the Artful Dodger goes to work as a police informer.