Charles Dickens, one of the most acknowledged and a prolific writer of the Victorian Era has probably given more to literature than anyone during that period. His remarkable portrayal of characters, grip on the issues of the age, precise knowledge about the class bias and excellent usage of prose is hard to forget and will haunt the reader’s mind forever.
Dickens the mouthpiece of the downtrodden brought great awareness of the difficulties faced by working class during the Industrial development and Victorian period. There is a great bit to know about this great man who has and still will contribute to the world. Here in are some of the fascinating facts about Charles Dickens the world needs to know.
- Dickens was one of those fortunate lads who had a poor background and received schooling. However, his fortunes didn’t last long as his father was imprisoned and he was forced to work in a boot polish factory. The struggle and loneliness felt by Dickens for three horrible years is reverberated in his works. The same conflict can be seen in one of his most autobiographical novel “David Copperfield”.
- Charles Dickens is credited for providing many words to English vocabulary and most of them are found in “The Oxford English Dictionary”. Some of the contributions of Dickens to English are dustbin, whoosh, crossfire, butter-fingers, slow-coach, etc. Although he is credited for the word ‘boredom’ it has been found ever since the 1830s and can only be given credits for popularizing the term.
- The humanitarian characteristics of Charles Dickens are highlighted during the 1865 Staplehurst rail crash where he helped passengers who are wounded before the arrival of rescue teams. It was a fortunate incident because Dickens himself was involved in the crash and his carriage did not run off the tracks.
- Dickens wrote many courtship letters to his future wife and hilariously he addressed her with terms such as ‘dearest darling Pig’ and ‘dearest Mouse’. Although these were meant to woo her with darling words, many different interpretations were elicited by scholars making those terms look negative. The most unfortunate thing is, Dickens’s love swayed after the marriage and it tilted more towards the sisters of his wife (Catherine). His interest towards Mary grew and after the death of Mary he wore her ring till the end.
- At his Gad’s Hill home Dickens used a secret door. This secret door was in the form of a bookcase which was a fake one. Interestingly, the books inside the bookcase were also not real and had fake titles. For instance, he had voluptuous volumes of books titled “The History of a Short Chancery Suit” (47 volumes) and “The Life of a Cat” (9 volumes).
Charles Dickens in his lifetime wrote hundreds of short stories, many plays, letters, fifteen novels and so on. He was a firm believer of the paranormal and became the member of ‘The Ghost Club’. The life and contributions of Charles Dickens were honored by the British Government by printing his face on the £10 note. The world has a lot to learn from the works of Dickens and prose form will always be indebted to him.