portrait of Charles Dickens
(Ca. 1867)

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Quotes of the Day for 7 February 2012 – Charles Dickens

Charles Dickens was born in 1812, two hundred years ago today, at Landport, Portsmouth, England. His father John was a clerk, a pay officer for the nearby naval facilities but a spendthrift. He was thrown into debtors' prison when Charles was only twelve, and the boy was put to work in a "blacking" factory pasting labels on jars of boot polish. Actually, they threw the whole family in prison where they stayed three months, while Charles lived alone and earned 6 shillings a week. It took John three years to put his finances back in order and rescue Charles from the drudge labor, apparently his mother favored leaving the boy there so the family would continue to receive his wages. After gaining fame and fortune as the first professional novelist, Charles provided far better for his parents than they had for him. Readers wondered at the powerful way Dickens wrote so vividly about the bleak conditions of the poor, his family's early experience with the poor house was not publicly known until after his death.

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You will find an expanded profile, photo, additional biographical links, and all quotes from this author on the author's Notable Quotable page.

The quotes:

Have a heart that never hardens, and a temper that never tires, and a touch that never hurts.

The stateliest building man can raise is the ivy's food at last.

He had but one eye, and the popular prejudice runs in favor of two.

Fan the sinking flame of hilarity with the wing of friendship; and pass the rosy wine.

It would do us no harm to remember oftener than we do, that vices are sometimes only virtues carried to excess!

It is a far, far better thing that I do, than I have ever done; it is a far, far better rest that I go to than I have ever known.

When a man bleeds inwardly, it is a dangerous thing for himself; but when he laughs inwardly, it bodes no good to other people.

Cheerfulness and contentment are great beautifiers and are famous preservers of youthful looks.
     All from Charles Dickens, 1812 - 1870

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