Charles Dickens (1812-1870)

Death: 9th June 1870
Location: Westminster Abbey, London, England
Cause of death: Stroke
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English author. Considered by many to be the greatest novelist of his time. He is remembered for his use of the serialised novel, through which he commented on social issues of the day. Having his work published in installments made it not only accessible due to their price but they could be described as the soap operas of their day due to the use of cliff-hangers which built up anticipation for the next issue.
His childhood was a happy one and his family was relatively well-off, but when Charles was twelve his father was imprisoned for debt and Charles had to start working in a factory. In 1827 Charles started working as a law clerk and then as a journalist. Aged twenty his first novel, The Pickwick Papers, was published.
In 1836 he married Catherine Hogarth which whom he had ten children. In 1842 the couple travelled to North America and Dickens wrote about this in American Notes, but in 1858 the couple separated. Dickens created characters that have become some of the best remembered in English literature, this is partly due to their names, for example Ebenezer Scrooge, Fagin and Miss Havisham. He is also known for his love and knowledge of London which shows in all his work. Dickens had wished to be buried in Rochester Cathedral, but he was buried at Westminster Abbey.