Happy Birthday Charles Dickens!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

in Famous People

Today marks the 200th anniversary of the birth of one of the most well-loved storytellers of all time - Charles Dickens. The great 19th century English novelist and outspoken supporter of social reform will be remembered in a new set of British stamps to be issued by the Royal Mail in June this year featuring famous characters from some of his novels, including Oliver Twist, David Copperfield and A Tale Of Two Cities.

The Pickwick Papers and David Copperfield by Charles Dickens

This is not the first time that characters from his books have been featured on British stamps – on 3 June 1970 four stamps were issued to commemorate the centenary of his death. The four 5d Dickens stamps pictured Mr. and Mrs. Micawber (David Copperfield); Mr. Pickwick and Sam (The Pickwick Papers); David Copperfield and Betsy Trotwood (David Copperfield); and of course, a scene showing Oliver asking for more (Oliver Twist).

David Copperfield and Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens

William Wordsworth stampThe four stamps in the 1970 Charles Dickens Commemorative Set were issued alongside a single William Wordsworth stamp, which marked the 200th anniversary of the poet's birth and depicted Grasmere, home of the Lake Poets.

Curiously, Britain was not the first country to issue a commemorative stamp celebrating Charles Dickens. That honour goes to Russia, or the Soviet Union as it was then called, which marked the 150th anniversary of his birth in 1962.

Russia Famous Writer English Novelist Charles Dickens stamp 1962
Russia Famous Writer English Novelist Charles Dickens stamp 1962
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GB 1970 sg824 8 Literary Anniversaries Charles Dickens  Wordsworth set MNH
GB 1970 sg824 8 Literary Anniversaries Charles Dickens Wordsworth set MNH
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G517 PITCAIRN ISLANDS ART BICENTENARY OF THE BIRTH CHARLES DICKENS 1SET MNH
G517 PITCAIRN ISLANDS ART BICENTENARY OF THE BIRTH CHARLES DICKENS 1SET MNH
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G444 2012 ASCENSION ISLAND ART CHARLES DICKENS CHRISTMAS CAROL 1SET MNH
G444 2012 ASCENSION ISLAND ART CHARLES DICKENS CHRISTMAS CAROL 1SET MNH
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GB SIGNED FDC BENHAM OFFICIAL FIRST DAY COVERS MULTIPLE LISTING
GB SIGNED FDC BENHAM OFFICIAL FIRST DAY COVERS MULTIPLE LISTING
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Dubai 371 374 fine used cancelled 1970 Charles dickens
Dubai 371 374 fine used cancelled 1970 Charles dickens
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GB 1970 Literary Anniversaries Charles Dickens FDC Southampton CDS VGC
GB 1970 Literary Anniversaries Charles Dickens FDC Southampton CDS VGC
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Antigua Scott  237 240 MNH Charles Dickens
Antigua Scott 237 240 MNH Charles Dickens
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GB 1970 Charles Dickens Death Centenary Wessex FDC Old Curiosity Shop CDS VGC
GB 1970 Charles Dickens Death Centenary Wessex FDC Old Curiosity Shop CDS VGC
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Antigua 1334 41 MNH Disney International Literacy Year Charles Dickens
Antigua 1334 41 MNH Disney International Literacy Year Charles Dickens
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first day of issue non colour charles dickens
first day of issue non colour charles dickens
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first day cover 2012 charles dickens
first day cover 2012 charles dickens
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STHELENA SG249 52 1970 CHARLES DICKENS MNH
STHELENA SG249 52 1970 CHARLES DICKENS MNH
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1970 Charles Dickens Oliver 5d FDC Broadstairs Kent Slogan Medical Insert
1970 Charles Dickens Oliver 5d FDC Broadstairs Kent Slogan Medical Insert
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1970 QEII Charles Dickens Sovereign FDC Chigwell Essex E78 SHS see Note
1970 QEII Charles Dickens Sovereign FDC Chigwell Essex E78 SHS see Note
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