Friday, February 7th will be Charles Dickens's 202nd birthday! In honor of this great author the game this week is all about his clever stories. Below are pairs of First Lines and Last Lines from each of his major works and you get to guess which title goes with each set. I'm leaving you a list of Charles Dickens works to choose from so you can match them up more easily.
To Play: Read each set of quotes below and leave a comment guessing which Charles Dickens Work each set comes from. Guess without looking up the answers. I'll respond with your score.
Scoring: Ten points for each correctly guessed quote set. A high score of 160 points can be earned.
Charles Dickens Works: A Christmas Carol, A Tale of Two Cities, Bleak House, Barnaby Rudge, David Copperfield, Dombey and Son, Great Expectations, Hard Times, Little Dorrit Martin Chuzzlewit, Nicholas Nickleby, Oliver Twist, Our Mutual Friend, Pickwick Papers, The Mystery of Edwin Drood, The Old Curiosity Shop
Charles Dickens Quotes:
Quote Set #1
First Line: "There once lived, in a sequestered part of the county of Devonshire, one Mr Godfrey --------: a worthy gentleman, who, taking it into his head rather late in life that he must get married, and not being young enough or rich enough to aspire to the hand of a lady of fortune, had wedded an old flame out of mere attachment, who in her turn had taken him for the same reason. Thus two people who cannot afford to play cards for money, sometimes sit down to a quiet game for love."
Last Line: "The grass was green above the dead boy's grave, and trodden by feet so small and light, that not a daisy drooped its head beneath their pressure. Through all the spring and summertime, garlands of fresh flowers, wreathed by infant hands, rested on the stone; and, when the children came to change them lest they should wither and be pleasant to him no longer, their eyes filled with tears, and they spoke low and softly of their poor dead cousin."
Quote Set #2
First Line: "LONDON. Michaelmas Term lately over, and the Lord Chancellor sitting in Lincoln’s Inn Hall. Implacable November weather. As much mud in the streets as if the waters had but newly retired from the face of the earth, and it would not be wonderful to meet a Megalosaurus, forty feet long or so, waddling like an elephantine lizard up Holborn Hill."
Last Line: "‘And don’t you know that you are prettier than you ever were?’ ‘I did not know that; I am not certain that I know it now. But I know that my dearest little pets are very pretty, and that my darling is very beautiful, and that my husband is very handsome, and that my guardian has the brightest and most benevolent face that ever was seen; and that they can very well do without much beauty in me — even supposing—.'"
Quote Set #3
First Line: "M----- was dead: to begin with. There is no doubt whatever about that. The register of his burial was signed by the clergyman, the clerk, the undertaker, and the chief mourner. S------ signed it. And S------'s name was good upon 'Change, for anything he chose to put his hand to. Old M----- was as dead as a door-nail."
Last Line: "He had no further intercourse with Spirits, but lived upon the Total Abstinence Principle, ever afterwards; and it was always said of him, that he knew how to keep Christmas well, if any man alive possessed the knowledge. May that be truly said of us, and all of us! And so, as Tiny Tim observed, God Bless Us, Every One."
Quote Set #4
First Line: "The first ray of light which illumines the gloom, and converts into a dazzling brilliancy that obscurity in which the earlier history of the public career of the immortal P------- would appear to be involved, is derived from the perusal of the following entry in the Transactions of the P------- Club, which the editor of these papers feels the highest pleasure in laying before his readers, as a proof of the careful attention, indefatigable assiduity, and nice discrimination, with which his search among the multifarious documents confided to him has been conducted."
Last Line: "He is known by all the poor people about, who never fail to take their hats off, as he passes, with great respect. The children idolise him, and so indeed does the whole neighbourhood. Every year he repairs to a large family merry-making at Mr. W-----'s; on this, as on all other occasions, he is invariably attended by the faithful S--, between whom and his master there exists a steady and reciprocal attachment which nothing but death will terminate."
Quote Set #5
First Line: "Among other public buildings in a certain town, which for many reasons it will be prudent to refrain from mentioning, and to which I will assign no fictitious name, there is one anciently common to most towns, great or small: to wit, a workhouse; and in this workhouse was born; on a day and date which I need not trouble myself to repeat, inasmuch as it can be of no possible consequence to the reader, in this stage of the business at all events; the item of mortality whose name is prefixed to the head of this chapter."
Last Line: "Within the altar of the old village church there stands a white marble tablet, which bears as yet but one word: "A----." There is no coffin in that tomb; and may it be many, many years, before another name is placed above it! But, if the spirits of the Dead ever come back to earth, to visit spots hallowed by the love- the love beyond the grave- of those whom they knew in life, I believe that the shade of A---- sometimes hovers round that solemn nook. I believe it none the less because that nook is in a Church, and she was weak and erring."
Quote Set #6
First Line: "In these times of ours, though concerning the exact year there is no need to be precise, a boat of dirty and disreputable appearance, with two figures in it, floated on the Thames, between Southwark bridge which is of iron, and London Bridge which is of stone, as an autumn evening was closing in."
Last Line: "When the company disperse—by which time Mr and Mrs V-------- have had quite as much as they want of the honour, and the guests have had quite as much as THEY want of the other honour—M------- sees T------ home, shakes hands with him cordially at parting, and fares to the Temple, gaily."
Quote Set #7
First Line: "Thirty years ago, Marseilles lay burning in the sun, one day. A blazing sun upon a fierce August day was no greater rarity in southern France then, than at any other time, before or since. Everything in Marseilles, and about Marseilles, had stared at the fervid sky, and been stared at in return, until a staring habit had become universal there. Strangers were stared out of countenance by staring white houses, staring white walls, staring white streets, staring tracts of arid road, staring hills from which verdure was burnt away. The only things to be seen not fixedly staring and glaring were the vines drooping under their load of grapes. These did occasionally wink a little, as the hot air barely moved their faint leaves."
Last Line: "They went quietly down into the roaring streets, inseparable and blessed; and as they passed along in sunshine and shade, the noisy and the eager, and the arrogant and the froward and the vain, fretted and chafed, and made their usual uproar."
Quote Set #8
First Line: "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to Heaven, we were all going direct the other way— in short, the period was so far like the present period, that some of its noisiest authorities insisted on its being received, for good or for evil, in the superlative degree of comparison only."
Last Line: "It is a far, far better thing that I do, than I have ever done; it is a far, far better rest that I go to than I have ever known."
Quote Set #9
First Line: "In the year 1775, there stood upon the borders of Epping Forest, at a distance of about twelve miles from London—measuring from the Standard in Cornhill,' or rather from the spot on or near to which the Standard used to be in days of yore—a house of public entertainment called the Maypole; which fact was demonstrated to all such travellers as could neither read nor write (and at that time a vast number both of travellers and stay-at-homes were in this condition) by the emblem reared on the roadside over against the house, which, if not of those goodly proportions that Maypoles were wont to present in olden times, was a fair young ash, thirty feet in height, and straight as any arrow that ever English yeoman drew."
Last Line: "From that period (although he was supposed to be much affected by the death of Mr W----- senior), he constantly practised and improved himself in the vulgar tongue; and, as he was a mere infant for a raven when B----- was grey, he has very probably gone on talking to the present time."
Quote Set #10
First Line: "My father's family name being P-----, and my Christian name P-----, my infant tongue could make of both names nothing longer or more explicit than P--. So, I called myself P--, and came to be called P--."
Last Line: "I took her hand in mine, and we went out of the ruined place; and, as the morning mists had risen long ago when I first left the forge, so the evening mists were rising now, and in all the broad expanse of tranquil light they showed to me, I saw no shadow of another parting from her."
Quote Set #11
First Line: "Whether I shall turn out to be the hero of my own life, or whether that station will be held by anybody else, these pages must show. To begin my life with the beginning of my life, I record that I was born (as I have been informed and believe) on a Friday, at twelve o'clock at night. It was remarked that the clock began to strike, and I began to cry, simultaneously."
Last Line: "My lamp burns low, and I have written far into the night; but the dear presence, without which I were nothing, bears me company. O A----, O my soul, so may thy face be by me when I close my life indeed; so may I, when realities are melting from me, like the shadows which I now dismiss, still find thee near me, pointing upward!"
Quote Set #12
First Line: "D----- sat in the corner of the darkened room in the great arm-chair by the bedside, and Son lay tucked up warm in a little basket bedstead, carefully disposed on a low settee immediately in front of the fire and close to it, as if his constitution were analogous to that of a muffin, and it was essential to toast him brown while he was very new."
Last Line: "Never from the mighty sea may voices rise too late, to come between us and the unseen region on the other shore! Better, far better, that they whispered of that region in our childish ears, and the swift river hurried us away!"
Quote Set #13
First Line: "Night is generally my time for walking. In the summer I often leave home early in the morning, and roam about fields and lanes all day, or even escape for days or weeks together; but, saving in the country, I seldom go out until after dark, though, Heaven be thanked, I love its light and feel the cheerfulness it sheds upon the earth, as much as any creature living."
Last Line: "Such are the changes which a few years bring about, and so do things pass away, like a tale that is told!"
Quote Set #14
First Line: "As no lady or gentleman, with any claims to polite breeding, can possibly sympathize with the C--------- Family without being first assured of the extreme antiquity of the race, it is a great satisfaction to know that it undoubtedly descended in a direct line from Adam and Eve; and was, in the very earliest times, closely connected with the agricultural interest. If it should ever be urged by grudging and malicious persons, that a C---------, in any period of the family history, displayed an overweening amount of family pride, surely the weakness will be considered not only pardonable but laudable, when the immense superiority of the house to the rest of mankind, in respect of this its ancient origin, is taken into account."
Last Line: "And coming from a garden, T--, bestrewn with flowers by children's hands, thy sister, little R---, as light of foot and heart as in old days, sits down beside thee. From the Present, and the Past, with which she is so tenderly entwined in all thy thoughts, thy strain soars onward to the Future. As it resounds within thee and without, the noble music, rolling round ye both, shuts out the grosser prospect of an earthly parting, and uplifts ye both to Heaven!"
Quote Set #15
First Line: "‘Now, what I want is, Facts. Teach these boys and girls nothing but Facts. Facts alone are wanted in life. Plant nothing else, and root out everything else. You can only form the minds of reasoning animals upon Facts: nothing else will ever be of any service to them. This is the principle on which I bring up my own children, and this is the principle on which I bring up these children. Stick to Facts, sir!’"
Last Line: "Dear reader! It rests with you and me, whether, in our two fields of action, similar things shall be or not. Let them be! We shall sit with lighter bosoms on the hearth, to see the ashes of our fires turn gray and cold."
Quote Set #16
First Line: "An ancient English Cathedral Tower? How can the ancient English Cathedral tower be here! The well-known massive gray square tower of its old Cathedral? How can that be here! There is no spike of rusty iron in the air, between the eye and it, from any point of the real prospect. What is the spike that intervenes, and who has set it up?"
Last Line: “Or,” pursued P----, in a kind of despondent rapture, “or if I was to deny that I came to this town to see and hear you, sir, what would it avail me? Or if I was to deny—”