The Theory of Tittlebats is the title of Samuel Pickwick's firstpublished work. Dickens explains in the Notes section
of his book that the Theory of Tittlebats was inspired by a real-life work by John Hill's "Dissertation on Stittlebacks", and serves as a parody of all things scientific and philosophical. Pickwick at this point early on in the novel seems to enjoy going about ridiculous and childish subject matters in a very scientific way that carries the humor all the further in the sense of making the reader believe it to be legitimate. He is often described as looking very much like a scientist or philosopher, but if the Theory of Tittlebats is to serve as evidence, Pickwick shares none of the former professions' devotion to serious, painstaking study. Instead, simply by the title given of his first article, he seems to take particular delight in annoying those whose opinions he doesn't approve or respect.