The following is a detailed timeline we are compiling of the movements of the life of the Victorian writer Charles Dickens during each year of his life, as we come across them in letters, newspaper articles and other research. We have also included some key contemporary events that occurred in society and major news events from across the world at the time.


January. Mary Shelley’s Gothic tale Frankenstein is published.

January. Percy Shelley’s sonnet Ozymandias is published.

February, 7. Charles Dickens’s 6th birthday.

March, 10. Gioachino Rossini’s witty comic opera The Barber of Seville is first performed in England at the King’s Theatre, Haymarket.

May, 7. Marriage of the Duke of Cambridge. The seventh son of King George III, Adolphus, Duke of Cambridge marries Princess Augusta of Hesse-Cassel. They will have three children, althrough none will inherit the British throne.

May, 11. The Royal Coburg Theatre is founded in south London (later renamed the Old Vic).

May, 29. Marriage of the Duke of Kent. The fourth son of King George III, Edward, Duke of Kent marries Victoria, Dowager Princess of Leningen in Schloss Ehrenburg, Coburg. Victoria is the sister of Princess Charlotte’s widowed husband, Prince Leopold of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld.

July, 11. Marriage of the Duke of Clarence. The third son of King George III, William, Duke of Clarence marries Princess Adelaide of Saxe-Meiningen at Kew Palace. None of their children will survive beyond infancy.

July, 30. Birth of Emily Brontë, novelist (died in 1848).

September, 25. The first blood transfusion using human blood is carried out in London by Dr. James Blundell.

November, 17. Death of Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz, Queen consort of the United Kingdom, wife of George III (born in 1744).

Missing a date? if you know of any movements not covered here we would welcome letting us know, along with a reference to any source material so we can try to fill in the gaps.