now the Inns as Dickens knew them, let us accompany Mr. Pickwick to the Magpie and Stump in search of Mr. Lowten, Mr. Perker's clerk.
"Is Mr. Lowten here, ma'am?" inquired Mr. Pickwick.
"Yes, he is, sir," replied the landlady. "Here, Charley, show the gentleman in to Mr. Lowten."
"The gen'lm'n can't go in just now," said a shambling pot-boy, with a red head, "'cos Mr. Lowten's singin' a comic song, and he'll put him out. He'll be done d'rectly, sir."
Well, you know, respectable solicitors (clerks) don't sing comic songs at public houses nowadays, but that is how Mr. Pickwick found Mr. Lowten.
"Would you like to join us?" said Mr. Lowten, when at length he had finished his comic song and been introduced to Mr. Pickwick. And I am very glad that Mr. Pickwick did join them, as he heard something of the old Inns from old Jack Bamber.
"I have been to-night, gentlemen," said Mr. Pickwick, hoping to start a subject which all the company could take a part in discussing--"I hav