An opium den in London's East End with a reclining smoker being watched by a group of men

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An opium den in London's East End with a reclining smoker being watched by a group of men. Wood engraving by A Doms, 1872, after G Doré. Published alongside (though not literally illustrating) Doré and Blanche Jerrold, loc. cit.: "As for our friend the Lascar, whose portrait we had taken on a previous visit — we shouldn't see him to-night: he was "in quod for a month: begging." So we went to a neighbour and rival of his, and were introduced to the room in which "Edwin Drood" opens. Upon the wreck of a four-post bedstead (the posts of which almost met overhead, and from which depended bundles of shapeless rags), upon a mattress heaped with indescribable clothes, lay, sprawling, a Lascar, dead-drunk with opium; and at the foot of the bed a woman, with a little brass lamp among the rags covering her, stirring the opium over the tiny flame. She only turned her head dreamily as we entered. She shivered under the gust of night air we had brought in, and went on warming the black mixture. It was difficult to see any humanity in that face, as the enormous grey dry lips lapped about the rough wood pipe and drew in the poison. The man looked dead. She said he had been out since four in the morning trying to get a job in the docks — and had failed." (pp. 147–48) At the beginning of Dickens's novel The mystery of Edwin Drood (1870) one of the characters (John Jasper) visits an opium den in London; hence the reference to this scene as "the Lascar's room in 'Edwin Drood". Created 1872. Opium abuse. Smoking. Hotels. Bars (Drinking establishments). Taverns (Inns). Pitchers. Drug paraphernalia. Opium. London (England). Contributors: Gustave Doré (1832–1883); A Doms. Work ID: zhdzysu5.

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