Little Nell and her grandfather live in the Old Curiosity Shop. Nell loves her grandfather, but her life is lonely. Her only friend is Kit a lad who works in the shop. Her grandfather secretly gambles at cards in order to secure Nell's financial future. After loosig his savings, he owes a dwarf money and the dwarf takes over the shop. Their existence becomes so miserable that Nell escapes with her grandfather to the country where they live as beggars.