|On Saturday I managed to get out and start a bit of festive photo blogging. And my|
first port of call was a visit to the former London home of literary giant Charles Dickens.
The house at 48 Doughty Street Bloomsbury is now a museum housing many of Dicken's
And being the month of December the organizers of the museum had the house decorated
throughout with lots of festive decorations. After all we do tend to associate Dickens
with this time of the year, although he didn't actually write A Christmas Carol while
living here, but he was working on some ideas for a Christmas story that would
eventually lead up to the release and publication of 'A Christmas Carol.'
With his new young wife Catherine, Dickens moved here to Doughty Street in
1837, the year Queen Victoria began her long reign. But the family only stayed
here for the next three years in what hat has often been described as a very fruitful
period for Dickens.
Joining the family at Doughty Street was Catherine's Sister Mary who sadly died
at the young age of only 17 in 1937. This had a great impact on Dicken's life
who it is now believed was very emotionally attached to the young Sister. And some
writers have hinted at Dicken's unfullfilled sexual attraction for the young
Mary Hogarth. Apparently Dicken's once confided in a close literary associate that
he would often dream of Mary at night. And when Mary died in the arms of Dickens in
1837 it was one of the biggest upheavals in the writers life. He put aside all his
writing work while publishers were screaming over his writing commitments.
While visiting the upstairs rooms at Doughty Street I looked in on the room where
the young Mary died. Even her white gown is still layed out on the bed. But for some
reason while being deep in thought I forgot to take a few pictures of the top floor
bedrooms with their typical Victorian four poster beds.
I did make a short video of my visit to the house which I posted up on my Youtube
page, but I was thoroughly disappointed with the outcome. Maybe it was because
many of the rooms were quite dark. I also feel quite lost without the steadying effect
of a camera tripod. But I enjoyed my little visit prying around on all four floors. And
thankfully there weren't staff and volunteers standing guard in every room like they
annoyingly do at Hampstead's Kenwood House. This allows you time to quietly stand
in any of the rooms at Doughty Street and take it all in, alone in peace and
quiet with just your thoughts.
For more information on The Dickens home, visit their website.
THE CHARLES DICKENS MUSEUM
|Above and below is The Dining Room on the ground floor. And it's in this|
room where Dickens and his family spent many happy hours socialising
with London's literary elite.
Gawd Bless Us All!
While one visitor seems interested in the Dining room table layout
it looks like the husband is more interested in Mr Pickwick's Clock.
|Situated on the first floor is Dicken's study. And it's here we see the very desk and|
chair (above) where he wrote 'Great Expectations' 'A Tale of Two Cities' and
'Our Mutual Friend.'
It's also here that he kept all his reading books.
Above: Click on picture to enlarge and read.
|Above and Below: The Ground floor Entrance and Gift Shop.|
Below left: A portrait of the younger Dickens looking fine and dandy which hangs
in the Ground floor Dining Room. The portrait is by Samuel Drummond (1837).
And there was I thinking it was actor Alan Cumming. There's definitely a strong
Below right is a new reprint edition of Oliver Twist which was published last year
by MacMillan Collectors Library.