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Overview (3)

Date of Birth 7 February 1812Portsmouth, Hampshire, England, UK
Date of Death 9 June 1870Gad's Hill, Rochester, Kent, England, UK  (cerebral hemorrhage)
Birth NameCharles John Huffam Dickens

Mini Bio (1)

Charles Dickens' father was a clerk at the Naval Pay Office, and because of this the family had to move from place to place: Plymouth, London, Chatham. It was a large family and despite hard work, his father couldn't earn enough money. In 1823 he was arrested for debt and Charles had to start working in a factory, labeling bottles for six shillings a week. The economy eventually improved and Charles was able to go back to school. After leaving school, he started to work in a solicitor's office. He learned shorthand and started as a reporter working for the Morning Chronicle in courts of law and the House of Commons. In 1836 his first novel was published, "The Pickwick Papers". It was a success and was followed by more novels: "Oliver Twist" (1837), "Nicholas Nickleby" (1838-39) and "Barnaby Rudge" (1841). He traveled to America later that year and aroused the hostility of the American press by supporting the abolitionist (anti-slavery) movement. In 1858 he divorced his wife Catherine, who had borne him ten children. During the 1840s his social criticism became more radical and his comedy more savage: novels like "David Copperfield" (1849-50), "A Tale of Two Cities" (1959) and "Great Expectations" (1860-61) only increased his fame and respect. His last novel, "The Mystery of Edwin Drood", was never completed and was later published posthumously.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Mattias Thuresson <mattias.thuresson@mbox300.swipnet.se>

Spouse (1)

Catherine Hogarth (2 April 1836 - 1858) (separated) (10 children)

Trade Mark (1)

Liked to write about spartan London life.

Trivia (18)

Buried in Poet's Corner at Westminster Abbey, London, UK.
He was in a train accident near Staplehurst in which 10 died and 49 were injured, although he came through unscathed. He was reading through the manuscript of "Our Mutual Friend" when the accident occurred, and wrote a postscript which he added to that book about the accident. Dickens died on 9 June 1870, exactly 5 years after the Staplehurst accident.
Great-great-great-grandfather of actor / race-car driver Brian Forster.
He and his wife, Catherine Hogarth, had ten children: Charles Culliford Boz Dickens, born 1837; Mary Dickens, born 1838; Kate Macready Dickens, born 1839; Walter Savage Landor Dickens, born 1841; Francis Jeffrey "Frank" Dickens, born 1844; Alfred D'Orsay Tennyson Dickens, born 1845; Sydney Smith Haldimand Dickens, born 1847; Henry Fielding Dickens, born 1849; Dora Annie Dickens, born 1850; and Edward Bulwer Lytton Dickens, born 1852.
Great-grandfather of writer Monica Dickens.
Suffered from asthma. He found relief from his "chest troubles" only with opium, a popular asthma remedy of his day. Mr. Omer, one of the asthmatic characters in his autobiographical novel "David Copperfield", reflects Dickens' own suffering.
The only known statue of him is located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. His will forbade a statue of any kind, and when one was made by admirers the family refused it. It is located in Clark Park at 43rd Street and Chester Avenue in the city's University City section. He is seen posing with a character from one of his stories, "Little Nell".
For many historians, the success of the classic story "A Christmas Carol" directly redefined the modern Western conception of Christmas and its sentiments, in effect creating the modern version of the holiday itself.
His personal experience as a labeler in a bottle factory inspired him to write a horrific scene of child labor in "Oliver Twist".
Dickens is often said to have been paid by the word, but this is untrue. For his serialized works, he was paid by the installment.
Visited America in 1842, where he was greatly acclaimed.
Was greatly admired by Queen Victoria, as well as by Fyodor Dostoevsky.
Owned a pet raven named Grip. Dickens introduced the loquacious raven into his serialized mystery novel "Barnaby Rudge" (1841). Edgar Allan Poe, who would later meet Dickens when he traveled to America, reviewed "Barnaby Rudge" and commented on the use of the talking raven, saying the bird should have loomed larger in the plot. Literary experts surmise that the talking raven of "Barnaby Rudge" inspired Poe's most famous poem, "The Raven", published in 1845. After Grip died in 1841, Dickens had the bird mounted. It now resides at the Free Library on Logan Circle in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Wrote four more novellas with a Christmas theme after the great success of "A Christmas Carol", which was published in 1843: "The Chimes," "The Cricket on the Hearth," "The Battle of Life" and "The Haunted Man.".
He is a great-great-great-grandfather of British actor Harry Lloyd.
His wish was to be buried in the English county of Kent but public demand led to his final resting place being in Westminster Abbey, London, England.
His play, "Great Expectations" at the Strawdog Theatre Ensemble in Chicago, Illinois was nominated for a 2014 Joseph Jefferson Non-Equity Award for Play Production.
Is said to have been inspired to create possibly his most famous character Ebenezer Scrooge by 18th century MP John Elwes. At one point Elwes was worth 800,000 pounds -- about $100 million in 2010 money. Despite being set for life, he refused to spend a penny on luxuries like candles, a fireplace, or a roof for his bedroom (to the horror of relatives visiting when it rained). He even refused to buy clothes regularly and often wore ones that had been discarded by the homeless. Unlike Scrooge, Elwes was known for being extremely generous with his money, often loaning it to friends and never asking for it back unless they volunteered it.

Personal Quotes (7)

Any man may be in good spirits and good temper when he's well dressed. There ain't much credit in that.
A wonderful fact to reflect upon, that every human creature is constituted to be that profound secret and mystery to every other.
Reflect upon your present blessings, of which every man has many - not on your past misfortunes, of which of all men have some.
[on babies] Every baby born into the world is a finer one than the last.
[on choice] We forge the chains we wear in life.
The life of almost any man possessing great gifts would be a sad book to himself.
[on Niagara Falls] It would be hard for a man to stand nearer to God than he does here.

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