On February 7, 1812 one the world’s most famous nineteenth century novelist was born. Charles Dickens was born in Portsmouth, England. Charles John Huffam Dickens was born to John and Elizabeth Dickens. He was the second of eight children. At age two, his family moved from Portsmouth to London.
His father worked as a clerk in a Navy Pay Office. Due to his hospitable and generous nature, they had financial trouble. This trouble escalated to a point that landed John in debtors’ prison. After his father went to prison, at the age of twelve, Charles had to go to work for a few months as a warehouse employee, blackening shoes and putting labels on boxes. During this period in his life, (while his father was in jail) was painful for him and is later influenced in some of his writings such as the novel David Copperfield. His father was the inspiration of one of the characters, Mr. Micawber.
Charles Dickens never had much of the opportunity to be a child. Many of his novels such as Oliver Twist and Philip Pirrip express the struggles he faced growing up. At a very young age he became a student of, “The School of Hard Knocks.” The idyllic days of childhood were over and he was rudely introduced to the world of the working poor (Merriman).
From 1824 to 1827 Charles studied at the Wellington House Academy in London (Bloom, Bloom's Classics Critical Views: Charles Dickens). For a year after he was removed from school, Dickens worked in a law office as a solicitor’s clerk. Soon thereafter in 1929, he became employed a free lance reporter. In 1833, Charles began to publish in Monthly Magazine. This is also when he began writing under the pseudonym “Boz,” (Bloom, Charles Dickens).
In 1833, Charles met the love of his life, Maria Beadnell. Unfortunately, her family opposed the marriage and sent her off to school in Paris. Due to being sent away, she and Charles were never together. However, on April 2, 1836, he married Catherine Hogarth. Within the less than twenty years they spent together, Catherine and Charles had ten children. Sadly, Charles’s first child, Mary Hogarth, born in 1837, died in his arms from Dickens disease. Catherine and Charles continued to have more children until 1858.
After getting married, Charles was beginning to become famous for his writings. During which, his family continued to struggle. He continually bailed his father out of jail and for many years, both his parents and siblings turned to him for financial assistance (Merriman). He was the structure that kept the family together after dealing with his father’s many trips to debtors’ prison.
From 1832 to 1834 Charles Dickens worked at various newspapers, including True Sun. In 1834 to 1836, Charles worked as a political reporter for the Morning Chronicle. He also worked as the editor for the Daily News, a paper of the Radical Party (Bloom, Bloom's Guides: A Tale of Two Cities). By this time he was 24 and had written The Pickwick Paper, which he soon...