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Charles Dickens
(1812 - 1870)

Born on Friday, February 7th at No. 1 Mile End Terrace, Landport, Portsmouth, Charles' father was John Dickens, a clerk in the Navy Pay Office.   Through a number of transfers, the family moved to Chatham in the Medway Valley where Charles experienced his happiest childhood years.Charles Dickens (16382 bytes) 

Unfortunately, John Dickens, who continually attempted to live beyond his means was sent to debtor's prision in Southwark in 1824.  Twelve-year old Charles was taken out of school and sent to work at a boot-blacking factory earning six shillings a week to help support the family.

His own childhood experience contributed to his views on social reform, and his compassion for the lower class, especially the children.  Dickens wrote 15 major novels and countless short stories and articles before his death on June 9, 1870.   The inscription on his tombstone in Poet's Corner, Westminster Abbey reads: "he was a sympathiser to the poor, the suffering, and the oppressed; and by his death, one of England's greatest writers is lost to the world.  The stories, characters, and places he wrote about will live forever."

Charles Dickens Tales

Sketches by Boz

Sketches by Boz is a collection of Mr. Dickens early stories which were originally published in 'Monthly Magazine' and other periodicals. The stories depict the adventures of Samuel Pickwick and his friends.

Oliver Twist

This novel also originally published in monthly parts tells the story of a young orphan named Oliver and is set in the seamy underside of the London criminal world.   Orphaned at birth and living at a parish workhouse, Oliver runs away to London after being mistreated and becomes involved with a band of criminals.

Little Dorrit

Using his childhood memories of his own father's imprisonment for debt at Marshalsea, Dickens tells the story of William Dorrit, whose family is also imprisoned there.  The physical and psychlogical aspects of imprisonment are examined throughout the novel.

Great Expectations

An absorbing mystery of a poor village boy named Pip and his expectations of wealth.

The Pickwick Papers

The Pickwick Papers explores the perils, travels, and adventures of the Pickwick Club's members: the founding chairman, former businessman and amateur scientist Mr. Pickwick; his trusted companion Sam Weller; the sportsman Winkle; the poet Snodgrass; and the lover Tracy Tupman.

A Christmas Carol (Our favorite of all times)

The tale of a bitter old miser whose redemption is brought about through his experiences with four ghosts.

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