Charles Dickens Quotes – Quote Wallpaper
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About Charles Dickens
Charles Dickens was one of the great figures in English literature and has maintained his popularity to the present day because of his breadth of appeal. Many of the characters he created have since passed into a sort of modern mythology while many of his quotations have become part of everyday language. His works have been translated into practically every language and his novels have been adapted to plays, films, musicals, and so on.
Charles Dickens was one of the most popular writers of his day as well. His unique blend of humour, pathos and humanitarianism resounds throughout all his works and made him wildly popular in his time. Over the years he has received his fair share of praise, and today he is generally regarded as a serious literary artist as well as a social analyst. His depiction of Victorian society as being industrialized, greedy, and self-important has earned his a seat among the great morally and socially responsible writers of history.
Charles Dickens was born at Portsea on February 7, 1812. His father was a clerk in the Navy Pay Office and his mother was of middle-class origin. Dickens’s earliest years were happy ones. He was considered a delicate and imaginative boy and spent much of his time wandering along with the country of the Thames and Medway estuaries. Indeed, this countryside was later to become the setting of many scenes in his novels. He read Shakespeare, the Arabian Nights, and many 18th Century novels he had found in his attic. At school, he was a quick learner and easily distinguished himself.
In 1822 the Dickens family relocated to London after his father was transferred there. Charles had been left in Chatham to finish his school term and later joined his family. When he arrived he found them living in poverty. His father had run into financial difficulty, and now there was to be no more schooling for Charles, only household chores. Now he roamed the London streets, instead of the Thames and Medway estuaries. In February 1824 his father was arrested for debts and taken to Marshalsea prison. Twelve-year-old Charles was now sent to work in a blacking warehouse for a wage of six shillings a week to support himself, as the rest of the Dickens family had relocated in the Marshalsea. His father was released in May 1824, but let Charles continue working for a few weeks more.
It was these months of humiliation and despair that was to have a profound impact on Charles Dickens. It was this experience that provided him with the relentless drive he was known for, and it was this experience that inspired the creation of the suffering children and victims of injustice so often found in his books.
Dickens studied for a few more years at Wellington House Academy, and then at age fifteen, he became an office boy at the law firm of Ellis and Blackmore. Increasingly dissatisfied with this dull work, he eventually turned to journalism. By 1832 he was a general reporter for the True Sun and also a parliamentary reporter for his uncle’s newspaper, the Mirror of Parliament. He also began writing fictional stories for London magazines. These stories attracted attention and in February 1836 a two-volume collection was published named Sketches By Boz.
At the same time Dickens’s first novel, Pickwick Papers (1836-1837) was being written. This coincided with his marriage to Catherine Hogarth. Catherine bore him ten children in fifteen years, but their relationship eventually deteriorated and they separated in 1858.
In the meantime, Pickwick Papers brought Charles Dickens fame. In the next eight years, he produced five more novels, miscellaneous stories, and several Christmas books, most notable of which was A Christmas Carol, which was published in 1843 and quickly became one of the world’s classics. His many books on various themes earned Dickens a reputation as a social reformer. His public, which he had once made laugh, he now made cry, especially with the death of Little Nell in The Old Curiosity Shop. The character of Nell was based on his sister-in-law, Mary Hogarth, who at age seventeen took ill and died in Dickens’s arms. This sad memory was to haunt him till the end of his days.
By 1849 Dickens had slowed in writing but was reaching the peak of his creative powers. Between 1849-1850 he wrote his most autobiographical novel, David Copperfield. This was followed by Bleak House (1852-1853), Hard Times (1854), and Little Dorrit (1855-1857). In Little Dorrit, there is a fusion of the autobiographical and social criticism, as the Marshalsea debtors’ prison is displayed as a symbol of England’s condition. This was followed by A Tale Of Two Cities (1859) and Great Expectations (1860-1861).
These later novels showed a Dickens who was more sombre than before. This was partly a result of social disillusionment and partly of personal and domestic circumstances. Despite his literary successes, Dickens was not a happy man. His marriage was falling apart and in the spring of 1859, he and his wife separated. The immediate reason for the breakup was Dickens’s growing attraction to the young actress Ellen Lawless Ternan.
Charles Dickens spent the last decade of his life in increased personal unhappiness and failing health. He gained no real happiness from his relationship with Ellen Ternan. Moreover, his sons, given all the advantages he lacked, were not turning out as well as he had hoped. One or two of them apparently had inherited their grandfather’s attitude towards money and it seemed they were destined for useless lives much in the manner of the early Pip in Great Expectations.
From 1858 onward, Dickens spent much of his energy giving a series of public readings from his own works. They were extremely successful, and in 1867, despite poor health, he visited the United States where his performances were a great success as well. He left the United States in April 1868 in irreparably poor health. He continued to push himself and was halfway through his last novel, The Mystery of Edwin Drood, when he had a stroke and died, at Glad’s Hill, on June 9, 1870. He was buried five days later in Westminster Abbey.
CHARLES DICKENS QUOTES – QUOTE WALLPAPER
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There are books of which the backs and covers are by far the best parts.
It’s my old girl that advises. She has the head. But I never own to it before her. Discipline must be maintained.
For it is good to be children sometimes, and never better than at Christmas, when its mighty Founder was a child Himself.
I do not know the American gentleman, God forgive me for putting two such words together.
Although a skillful flatterer is a most delightful companion if you have him all to yourself, his taste becomes very doubtful when he takes to complimenting other people.
My advice is to never do tomorrow what you can do today. Procrastination is the thief of time.
To a young heart everything is fun.
Charity begins at home, and justice begins next door.
There is nothing in the world so irresistibly contagious as laughter and good humor.
No one is useless in this world who lightens the burdens of another.
Suffering has been stronger than all other teaching, and has taught me to understand what your heart used to be. I have been bent and broken, but – I hope – into a better shape.
Heaven knows we need never be ashamed of our tears, for they are rain upon the blinding dust of earth, overlying our hard hearts.
Have a heart that never hardens, and a temper that never tires, and a touch that never hurts.
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