Charles Dickens spent 22 years married to his wife, Catherine Hogarth. She was the oldest daughter of George and Georgina Hogarth. She moved to England, from Scotland, with her family in 1834. She met Dickens in 1834 after he had recently ended a relationship with Maria Beadnell. The two became engaged in 1835 and married in April of the next year. Less than a year later, their first child was born. Together, the two had ten children.
The first years of their marriage were quite happy but, he grew disenchanted with his wife and the fact that he had so many children to support, something he blamed on Catherine. He met and started a relationship with Ellen Ternan in 1857. She would be his companion for the rest of his life. She outlived Dickens by forty-four years.
Below, readers can explore facts about the ten children Charles Dickens, and Catherine Hogarth had together.
Charles Culliford Boz Dickens
Charles was the first child born to Dickens and his wife. He was born in 1837 and started his working life in the banking and business industry. He went bankrupt in 1868 and worked at All The Year Round, having been hired by his father. He later wrote reference books like Dickens’s Dictionary of the Thames. He died when he was 59 in 1859.
Mary was the second child born to the Dickens’. She was born only a year after her older brother. Little is known about her life except that she lived with Dickens’ aunt, Georgina, after Dickens’ passed away. She wrote the book My Father as I Recall Him.
Kate Macready Dickens
Kate, the third child born to the Dickens’, was the only one of the ten to side with her mother when her parents split. Throughout her life, she earned the nickname “Lucifer Box” because of her temper. She married twice and passed away in 1929.
Walter Landor Dickens
The Dickens’ fourth child, Walter, was named for Walter Savage Landor. He was educated at Wimbledon and nicknamed “Young Skull.” He became a cadet in the East India Company and spent time in India when he was only 16. He earned the rank of lieutenant before dying of an aortic aneurysm in Calcutta, India in 1863. He is buried in the South Park Street Cemetery. His father was left with many unpaid bills that Walter had accumulated throughout his life.
Francis Jeffrey Dickens
Francis was Dickens’ fifth child and third boy. He was nicknamed “Chickenstalker.” A name that came from the character Mrs. Chickenstalker in a book The Chimes. He trained to become a doctor in Germany before deciding to join the Bengal Mounted Police. He spent seven years in India. He later joined the North-West Mounted Police as a Sub Inspector in Canada in 1874.
Alfred D’Orsay Tennyson Dickens
Alfred was the sixth child born to Charles and Catherine. He left England when he twenty and moved to Australia, leaving behind unpaid bills. He was nicknamed “Sampson Brass” and “Skittles” by his father. Dickens hoped his son would make his own life in Australia. He remained there for forty-five years. He eventually purchased Wangagong station and later moved to Victoria to work as a station agent. He lectured during his lifetime about his famous father.
Sydney Smith Haldimand Dickens
Sydney was the Dickens’ seventh child. He was born in 1847 and had a successful career in the navy. But, like other Dickens’ children, he accumulated debt that fell on his father. He was given the nicknames “The Ocean Spectre” and “The Admiral” by his father. He was promoted to lieutenant in 1872. Despite being proud of his son’s career, at one point he refused to let Sydney into the house because he had accumulated so much debt. He died in 1872 after being invalided on the Topaze.
Henry Fielding Dickens
Henry was the eighth child born to the Dickens. He is often cited as the most successful of the ten. He spent his life as a sportsman and was knighted in 1922. He worked as a barrister and Common Serjeant of London. He outlived the rest of the Dickens children, dying in 1933.
Dora Annie Dickens
The ninth child born to the Dickens. She was named for “Dora” from David Copperfield. She sadly passed away as an infant.
Edward Bulwer Lytton Dickens
The tenth and final child born to the Dickens. He was nicknamed “Plorn” and named for the author Edward Bulwer-Lytton. He moved to Australia when he was sixteen and entered politics. He served as a member of the New South Wales Legislative Assembly. He died at the age of 49.
Are there any living descendants of Charles Dickens?
There are believed to be around 60 direct descendants of Charles Dickens alive today.
What family did Charles Dickens have?
Dickens was born to John and Elizabeth Dickens and was the second of eight children that couple had. He later married Catherine Hogarth, and together, they had ten children.
Did Charles Dickens have ten kids?
Yes, Charles Dickens had ten children. Three girls and seven boys. One girl, Dora, died when she was less than a year old.