King's College London
Exhibitions & Galleries
Charles Dickens: a writing lifetime
Special Collections Exhibitions|Charles Dickens: a writing lifetime 

Charles Dickens: a writing lifetime

First editions and other rare materials at King’s College London

Portrait of Dickens in 1839, aged 27. From: BW Matz. Character Sketches from Dickens. London: Raphael Tuck & Sons Ltd, 1924 [Rare Books Collection PR4589 M3]Portrait of Dickens in 1839, aged 27. From: BW Matz. Character Sketches from Dickens. London: Raphael Tuck & Sons Ltd, 1924 [Rare Books Collection PR4589 M3]This online Special Collections exhibition – designed to celebrate 200 years since the birth of Charles Dickens in 1812 – presents a selection of rare early and original materials which together represent the breadth of his writing career.

It features material from all periods of Dickens's writing life, published and manuscript, from early work published anonymously, a review of his first pseudonymous book, Sketches by 'Boz', first editions of several of his novels which demonstrate the range of his achievement as a novelist, a manuscript letter from King's College London Archives in the novelist's hand, and one of Dickens's public speeches as it was originally printed for charitable distribution.

A second online exhibition is planned to follow later in 2012, focusing upon other materials in the Foyle Special Collections Library which are associated with Dickens and with the Cleveland Street Workhouse, an important London workhouse which - it has recently been discovered - stood only a few doors from his first London home.

Dr Ruth Richardson, guest curator.

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