About This Book
Bleak House by Charles Dickens - is a novel by Charles Dickens, first published as a 20-episode serial between March 1852 and September 1853. The novel has many characters and several sub-plots, and is told partly by the novel's heroine, Esther Summerson, and partly by an omniscient narrator. At the centre of Bleak House is a long-running legal case in the Court of Chancery, Jarndyce and Jarndyce, which comes about because a testator has written several conflicting wills. In a preface to the 1853 first edition, Dickens claimed there were many actual precedents for his fictional case.Jarndyce and Jarndyce is an interminable law case in the Court of Chancery, concerning two or more wills and the beneficiaries of them.Sir Leicester Dedlock and his wife Honoria live on his estate at Chesney Wold. Lady Dedlock is a beneficiary under one of the wills. While listening to the reading by the family solicitor, Mr Tulkinghorn, of an affidavit, she recognises the handwriting on the copy. The sight affects her so much she almost faints, which Mr Tulkinghorn notices and investigates. He traces the copyist, a pauper known only as "Nemo", in London. Nemo has recently died, and the only person to identify him is a street-sweeper, a poor homeless boy named Jo, who lives in a particularly grim and poverty-stricken part of the city known as Tom-All-Alone's ("Nemo" is Latin for "nobody").