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(Charles, 1812-1870, Novelist)]
Fine unsigned carte de visite photo by John and Charles Watkins
showing him full length seated in a very elaborate armchair with his cane between his legs, he is wearing a casual jacket and trousers and looking straight at the camera, there is a table with a statue on it behind him, 4" x 2½", London, no date circa
In 1857, Dickens hired professional actresses for the play
The Frozen Deep
, written by him and his protégé, Wilkie Collins. Dickens fell in love with one of the actresses, Ellen Ternan, and this passion was to last the rest of his life. Dickens was 45 and Ternan 18 when he made the decision, which went strongly against Victorian convention, to separate from his wife, Catherine, in 1858—divorce was still unthinkable for someone as famous as he was. When Catherine left, never to see her husband again, she took with her one child, leaving the other children to be raised by her sister Georgina who chose to stay at Gad's Hill.
In June 1862 Dickens was offered £10,000 for a reading tour of Australia. He was enthusiastic, and even planned a travel book,
The Uncommercial Traveller Upside Down
, but ultimately decided against the tour. Two of his sons— Alfred D'Orsay Tennyson Dickens and Edward Bulwer Lytton Dicken did migrate to Australia, Edward becoming a member of the Parliament of New South Wales.
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