The carefully preserved and stuffed raven named Grip — later the inspiration for Edgar Allan Poe’s famous poem — is perhaps the quirkiest part of the Philadelphia public library’s valuable Dickens collection, now on display to celebrate his bicentennial.
Gerald Dickens, the great-great-grandson of Charles Dickens, at the Free Library in Philadelphia for the first time seeing the family pet Grip, which Edgar Allan Poe appropriated for his masterpiece ‘The Raven.’
Congratulations to Bala Cynwyd’s Lisa Litman, who won the Free Library of Philadelphia’s “Dickens Idol” talent contest and the right to portray Charles Dickens in a series of literary events as part of the library’s yearlong celebration of the 200th anniversary of the Victorian novelist’s birth.
To kick off itsYear of Dickens, the Free Library of Philadelphia will host “Dickens Idol” tonight, a cutthroat competition to find the best actor to embody literary great Charles Dickens at a bonanza of events planned for next year.
I visited the Free Library about a year ago to see Grip. Their rare books collection is really fascinating, and they have a number of other Dickens-related items, too. Definitely check it out if you’re in Philly!
How Dickens’s pet inspired Edgar Allan (and how that taxidermied bird ended up in Philly)