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Charles Dickens - Author

About the Author

Charles Dickens was born in Landport, Hampshire, during the new industrial age, which gave birth to theories of Karl Marx. Dickens's father was a clerk in the navy pay office. He was well paid but often ended in financial troubles. In 1814 Dickens moved to London, and then to Chatham, where he received some education. The schoolmaster William Giles gave special attention to Dickens, who made rapid progress. In 1824, at the age of 12, Dickens was sent to work for some months at a blacking factory, Hungerford Market, London, while his father John was in Marshalea debtor's prison. "My father and mother were quite satisfied," Dickens later recalled bitterly. "They could hardly have been more so, if I had been twenty years of age, distinguished at a grammar-school, and going to Cambridge." Later this period found its way to the novel LITTLE DORRITT (1855-57). John Dickens paid his £40 debt with the money he inherited from his mother; she died at the age of seventy-nine when he was still in prison.

Featured books by Charles Dickens

Sketches of Young Gentlemen and Young Couples With Sketches of Young Ladies by Edward Caswall

Sketches of Young Gentlemen and Young Couples With Sketches of Young Ladies by Edward Caswall

Author: Charles Dickens Format: Hardback Release Date: 10/11/2011

Following the phenomenal popularity of Sketches by Boz and The Pickwick Papers, Dickens produced two short volumes of Sketches of Young Gentlemen and Young Couples, in response to the appearance of Sketches of Young Ladies by 'Quiz'. Each volume purports to dissect the characteristics of familiar types such as 'The Bashful Young Gentleman', 'The Literary Young Lady', and 'The Couple who Coddle themselves'. Whimsical, satirical, witty and exuberant, the sketches ridicule the behaviour of their subjects with perfect comic effect, rendering Mr Whiffler, Mrs Chopper and their companions instantly recognizable. They offer intriguing glimpses of courtship rituals and relations between the sexes at the outset of the Victorian era, and fascinating evidence of a writer learning his craft and refining his style. This edition includes the original illustrations by Phiz, and an introduction that examines the appeal of the sketch, a literary genre in which Dickens excelled throughout his career.

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Other books by Charles Dickens

The Old Curiosity Shop

The Old Curiosity Shop

Author: Charles Dickens Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 14/10/2000

'His characters are marvellous, his insights wonderful ... You don't expect reality but you get something bigger and better' Ruth Rendell The Old Curiosity Shop was an instant bestseller that, even while it was criticized for its sentimentality, captured the hearts of the nation with its portrayal of little Nell Trent, who is thrown into a terrifying world when her beloved grandfather is unable to pay his debts to the loathsome Quilp. Alongside the pathos of the innocent, tragic Nell are some of Dickens's greatest characters: the ne'er-do'well Dick Swiveller, the mannish lawyer Sally Brass, the half-starved 'Marchioness' and the lustful Quilp himself, a creation of demonic power and cruelty. Edited with an Introduction and Notes by Norman Page

Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol

Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol

Author: Charles Dickens Format: Hardback Release Date: 20/09/2000

Remarkable, sumptuous artwork by top children's illustrator Christian Birmingham enhances this faithful abridgement of the Dickens classic.

Oliver Twist

Oliver Twist

Author: Charles Dickens Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/09/2000

The British Academy/The Pilgrim Edition of the Letters of Charles Dickens: Volume 11: 1865-1867

The British Academy/The Pilgrim Edition of the Letters of Charles Dickens: Volume 11: 1865-1867

Author: Charles Dickens Format: Hardback Release Date: 01/03/2000

This eleventh volume presents 1158 letters, many previously unpublished or published only in part, for the years 1865 to 1867. Dickens's main work in the period is the completion of the monthly parts of Our Mutual Friend (final part 31 October 1865, for November); unusually, it comes out in two volumes (January and November 1865) during the period of its run. The three All the Year Round Christmas numbers, `Doctor Marigold's Prescriptions', `Mugby Junction', and `No Thoroughfare' (written jointly with Wilkie Collins) are again highly successful. He remains in high demand as chairman of a varied collection of public charitable dinners: they include charities to which he was constantly faithful, such as the Newsvendors' Benevolent Institution and the Royal General Theatrical Fund; but he also presides, for the only time, at the Annual Dinner of the Dramatic, Equestrian, and Musical Sick Fund Association (14 February 1866) and - at the instigation of Charley Dickens, a keen oarsman and Committee member - at the Dinner of the Metropolitan Rowing Club (7 May 1866), making a particularly brilliant speech. The first reference to his swollen left foot, attributed by him to frost-bite, comes in February 1865; but the most dramatic event in this volume is the railway accident at Staplehurst, Kent, on 9 June 1865, in which he is involved on returning from a short visit to France, accompanied by Ellen Ternan and her mother. The frontispiece shows him helping the injured and dying. He gives two provincial reading tours managed by George Dolby of Chappell & Co., in 1866 and 1867, besides frequent readings in London. After a Farewell Dinner to him in London, with Lord Lytton in the Chair, he sails on 9 November 1867 from Liverpool to Boston, to begin his American tour of 75 readings.

The Pickwick Papers

The Pickwick Papers

Author: Charles Dickens, Mark Wormald, Mark Wormald Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 24/02/2000

'One of my life's greatest tragedies is to have already read Pickwick Papers - I can't go back and read it for the first time' Fernando Pessoa Few first novels have created as much popular excitement as The Pickwick Papers - a comic masterpiece that catapulted its twenty-four-year-old author to immediate fame. Readers were captivated by the adventures of the poet Snodgrass, the sportsman Winkle and, above all, by that quintessentially English Quixote, Mr Pickwick, and his cockney Sancho Panza, Sam Weller. From the hallowed turf of Dingley Dell Cricket Club to the unholy fracas of the Eatanswill election, characters and incidents sprang to life from Dickens's pen, to form an enduringly popular work of ebullient humour and literary invention. Edited with an Introduction and Notes by Mark Wormald

Cuento de Navidad

Cuento de Navidad

Author: Charles Dickens Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/12/1999

Martin Chuzzlewit

Martin Chuzzlewit

Author: Charles Dickens, Patricia Ingham, Patricia Ingham Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 25/11/1999

'Among the most powerful things Dickens ever did in fiction' Guardian Greed has led wealthy old Martin Chuzzlewit to become suspicious and misanthropic, leaving his grandson and name-sake to make his own way in the world. And so young Martin sets out from the Wiltshire home of his supposed champion, the scheming architect Pecksniff, to seek his fortune in America. In depicting Martin's journey Dickens created many vividly realized figures, from Martin's optimistic manservant Mark Tapley to the drunken and corrupt private nurse Mrs Gamp. With its portrayal of greed, blackmail and murder, and its searing satire on America, Dickens's novel is a powerful and blackly comic story of hypocrisy and redemption. Edited with an Introduction and Notes by Patricia Ingham

A Christmas Carol

A Christmas Carol

Author: Charles Dickens Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 22/11/1999

Ebenezer Scrooge, a miserly businessman, learns the true meaning of Christmas after he is visited by the ghosts of Christmases past, present, and future.

Nicholas Nickleby

Nicholas Nickleby

Author: Charles Dickens, Mark Ford Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 04/03/1999

'A revelation ... as well as being sympathetic to the plight of children, it is hilarious' A. N. Wilson The hero of Dickens's flamboyantly exuberant novel, Nicholas Nickleby, is left penniless after his father's death and forced to make his own way in the world. His adventures give Dickens the opportunity to portray an extraordinary gallery of rogues and eccentrics: Wackford Squeers, the tyrannical headmaster of Dotheboys Hall; the tragic orphan Smike, rescued by Nicholas; and the gloriously theatrical Mr and Mrs Crummle and their daughter, the 'infant phenomenon'. Nicholas Nickleby is characterized by Dickens's outrage at social injustice, but it also reveals his comic genius at its most unerring. Edited with an Introduction by Mark Ford

Great Expectations

Great Expectations

Author: Charles Dickens Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 17/01/1999

The newly established text is based on all extant materials and is accompanied by several textual essays. Backgrounds provides readers with an understanding of Great Expectations's inception and internal chronology. A discussion of the public-reading version of the novel is also included. A wonderfully rich Contexts section collects thirteen pieces, centering on the novel's major themes: the link between author and hero and, relatedly, Victorian notions of gentility, snobbishness, and social mobility; the often brutal training, at home and at school, of children born around 1800; and the central issues of crime and punishment. Criticism gathers twenty-two assessments of Great Expectations, both contemporary and modern, which offer a range of perspectives on Dickens and his novel.

David Copperfield Pb

David Copperfield Pb

Author: Charles Dickens Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/01/1999

A Christmas Carol

A Christmas Carol

Author: Charles Dickens Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 31/12/1998

The Pickwick Papers

The Pickwick Papers

Author: Charles Dickens Format: Hardback Release Date: 22/10/1998

When young Charles Dickens was commissioned to write the text for a series of sporting illustrations in 1836, no one could have suspected that this journeyman task was to turn in to one of the great comic novels in English literature. After the premature death of the original illustrator, Dickens took charge of the project, which was published in monthly parts. The result is a brilliant panorama of English life in the 1830s, a cornucopia of stories and vignettes featuring dozens of vividly drawn characters. Chief among them are Mr Pickwick himself, a later day Don Quixote travelling about the country righting wrongs; and his Sancho Panza, Sam Weller, whose pithy sayings and bizarre anecdotes immediately became and remained part of national mythology. With The Pickwick Papers Dickens established himself at a single stroke as a major creative artist, revealing the depth of his human sympathies, the breadth of his interests and his extraordinary linguistic virtuosity. His first novel, published when he was 25, is his first masterpiece. The Everyman edition includes 43 illustrations by Seymour and 'Phiz' which accompanied the original edition and also reprints the 1907 preface by G. K. Chesterton.

Great Expectations

Great Expectations

Author: Charles Dickens Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 15/04/1998

Originally published in serial form from December 1860 to August 1861, Great Expectations is the `autobiography' of Pip, as he transformed from apprentice village blacksmith to a London gentleman. Unlike many of Dickens's earlier works, the novel is not so much a protest against social evils as a sustained meditation upon the process of social reform in Victorian England. It is this which gives such importance to the book's handling of the theme of the gentleman, a theme central both to Dickens's society and to his own life story.

The British Academy/The Pilgrim Edition of the Letters of Charles Dickens: Volume 10: 1862-1864

The British Academy/The Pilgrim Edition of the Letters of Charles Dickens: Volume 10: 1862-1864

Author: Charles Dickens Format: Hardback Release Date: 01/04/1998

This volume presents 918 letters, 435 previously unpublished, for the years 1862 to 1864. Our Mutual Friend, Dickens's main work in the period, comes out monthly from 30 April 1864 to 31 October 1865, illustrated by Marcus Stone, son of Dickens's old friend, the painter Frank Stone; a series of new letters to him shows the immense care Dickens took over his illustrations. The three All the Year Round Christmas numbers, Somebody's Luggage , Mrs. Lirriper's Lodgings and Mrs. irriper's Legacy , take up much of his energies and are highly successful. Public readings do not occupy so much of his time as in the last volume; but he completes his second provincial tour in January 1862; gives two series weekly in London; and reads for charity in both Rochester and Paris. He declines an offer of GBP10,000 for an eight months' reading tour in Australia. Gad's Hill plays an increasingly major part in his life: he entertains many of his friends there and makes constant improvements to it. But there is no other period in which he pays so many visits to France, generally alone. The deliberately mystifying language he uses about these visits suggests he was seeing Ellen Ternan either in Paris or Boulogne or both, but there is no evidence to prove it. Long letters to his Swiss friend, W. W. F. de Cerjat, testify to his concern with public issues; several show how much he hated the American Civil War.

Barnaby Rudge

Barnaby Rudge

Author: Charles Dickens Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 16/03/1998

Illustrations by Hablot K. Browne (Phiz) and George Cattermole, with a new Introduction by Cedric Watts, Research Professor of English, University of Sussex. This vivid historical and political novel by Dickens is centred on the infamous 'No Popery' riots, instigated by Lord George Gordon, which terrorised London in 1780. Dickens' targets are prejudice, intolerance, religious bigotry and nationalistic fervour, together with the villains who exploit these for selfish ends. His intense account of the riots is interwoven with the mysterious tale of a long-unsolved murder and with a romance involving forbidden love, treachery and heroism. Barnaby Rudge abounds in memorably strange, comic and grotesque characters. Furthermore, recent historical events have renewed its political topicality.

Author Info

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https://www.dickens2012.org/

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