Charles Dickens’s Birthplace
Charles Dickens was born on February 7, 1812 in Portsmouth, England. His family was poor, but Charles was able to go to school at the early age. Soon enough, he moved with his family to Camden Town, a poor neighborhood in London. Charles’s father was sent to a prison over a debt that he couldn’t pay and this time became an inspiration for Charles and his writing. His father desired to be rich and he lived as he was rich, the debt that he couldn’t pay sent him to a prison.
Young Charles was only twelve years old at the time and he was forced to leave school and to work after his father’s imprisonment. He felt betrayed by adults and lost and later on, this experience became a great focus in Dickens’s writing. Charles became an office boy when he was 15 and like many others, he started his writing career with reporting jobs. As an office boy, he started writing as a freelance for the law courts of London and soon enough he was a reporter for two main London newspapers. His pseudonym was Boz and his first book was Sketches by Boz, published in 1836.
His first novel, Oliver Twist was inspired by his own childhood, underprivileged child who had to be witty and smart in the world of adults. Needless to say the novel was well received in England and in the USA.
Charles Dickens was ahead of his time, he was against slavery and he was not scared to speak out. He became an icon in the USA, but he was critical and he didn’t have a lot of good things to say about materialism and culture in the USA. That was a time when writers were famous and rich. Everyone knew Charles Dickens and his fame and novels made him a fortune.
He divorced from his wife, with whom he had ten children. He became intimate with a young actress Ellen Ternan, but Dickens never really acknowledged their relationship. After the divorce and a death of his daughter and father, Dickens novels became darker and more complex. If you have never read anything from Charles Dickens, you can start with his most respected novel – A Great Expectations.
In his lifetime, Charles Dickens wrote The Great Expectations (1861), A Christmas Carol (1843), David Copperfield (1850), Bleak House (1853), Hard Times (1854), Our Mutual Friend (1865), The Old Curiosity Shop (1841) and many more. Lewis Carroll once wrote: “One novel has been all my reading, Our Mutual Friend, one of the cleverest that Dickens has written.”
Charles Dickens died of a stroke in Kent, England on June 8, 1870. He left his last novel The Mystery of Edwin Drood unfinished. He was buried at the Westminster Abbey, where thousands of people gathered around his gravestone.
Here are a few inspirational quotes from Charles Dickens, one of the greatest writers that ever lived: