This is one of the first things that have captured my delight in The Woman in White. The story begins to be told by Walter Hartwright, and the being he refers to in the excerpt is a foreigner named Pesca.
It may be necessary to explain, here, that Pesca prided himself on being a perfect Englishman in his language, as well as in his dress, manners, and amusements. Havinng picked up a few of our most familiar colloquial expressions, he scattered them about over his conversation whenever they happened to occur to him, turning them, in his high relish for their sound and his general ignorance of their sense, into compound words and repetitions of his own, and always running them into eacg other, as if they consisted of one long syllable.
Chapter 3, The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins, (published 1860.)
Though Pesca is hardly a principle character to the story (at least so far and you never know with Wilkie - things change quickly and unexpectedly with him), he is definitely a hilarious and brilliant minor character. From his introduction to his seperation with Walter Hartwright in Chapter 4, he is just wonderful. I thank Wilkie extremely for having him along. He's great company and much needed comic relief!
For those who are unfamiliar with Wilkie's writing, (although I am only a new acquaintance of Mr. Collins', I feel that I have quickly become very familiar with him and feel disposed to call him by his Christian name), his style is very unique to the era. I'll give you some more on him tomorrow.