Charles Lever

Orfeas Katsoulis | Aug 17, 2023

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Charles James Leaver (August 31, 1806 (1806-08-31), Dublin - June 1, 1872, Trieste) was an Irish writer and physician.

He was born into the family of a wealthy English immigrant, an architect and builder, and an Irish aristocrat descendant of the Cromwellian settlers.

He was educated in private schools. In 1823-1828 he studied in Trinity College. Traveled around Europe, lived in Holland and Germany, met J. W. Goethe and the future Emperor Napoleon III, then went with Irish emigrants to Quebec, lived for a time among the Canadian Indians, but soon returned home to complete his medical education.

He studied medicine at the University of Göttingen and Leuven. In 1831 he received a degree in medicine. After graduating as a doctor, he opened a practice in Dublin, but a vicious passion for gambling and other extravagant habits soon absorbed both the inheritance and the doctor's considerable income, and therefore the future writer had to find a use for his brilliant talent as a storyteller.

In 1840 C. Leaver settled in Brussels, but in 1842 he returned home and accepted the post of editor of the Dublin University Magazine, around which he gathered a group of Irish intellectuals. In 1845 the writer went abroad again and never returned to Ireland: in 1857 he was appointed vice-consul and then consul in Trieste, and in 1867 he represented Great Britain at the funeral of the Mexican emperor Maximilian I Habsburg.

Ч. Leaver is buried in the English cemetery in Trieste next to his wife.

All his colorful life is reflected in the many novels of the prolific writer, which describe for the most part either the ridiculous aspects of Irish life or the life of the English abroad.

His experiences with cholera epidemics in Kilkee, Clare, and Port Stewart formed the basis of his novels St. Patrick's Day Eve (1845) and The Martins of Crow Martin (1856). In the second half of the 1830s he began to publish in various periodicals, but he gained real fame after the publication of his novel Confessions of Harry Lorreker (1837).

Among his books the most popular are Charles O'Malley, where a very amusing type of Irish servant, Con Cregan, Arthur O'Leary, The Knight of Gwynne, Harry Lorrequer. , in books describing the personal adventures of the author and Englishmen while traveling, "The Dalton," "The Dodd Family Abroad," etc. One of C. Leaver's most remarkable novels is "A Day's Ride, a Life's Romance," where sincere feeling merges with cold mockery.

In the novels "Irish Dragoon Charles O'Malley" (1841), "Guardsman Jack Hinton" (1843) Ch. Leaver humorously depicted the life of the military and Dublin aristocracy. The novels "Our" Tom Burke (vols. 1-2, 1843-1844) and "O'Donogh, An Account of Ireland Fifty Years Ago" (1845) provide realistic descriptions of Irish society. The novel Lutterel of Arran (1865, Russian translation 1866) from the lives of peasants and the petty bourgeoisie, written in a domestic-descriptive manner, contains elements of social criticism. The novel "Barrington" ("Barrington", 1862), which paints a picture of social life and everyday life of the middle classes of the Irish bourgeoisie, is dedicated to C. Dickens, with whom C. Leaver was connected by a long friendship and to whom he is close in his humor. He was also friends with W. Thackeray.

According to the authors of ESBE, Leaver's works are poorly put together, they lack the unity of the plot, no plan, but they shine with humor and liveliness of presentation.


  1. Charles Lever
  2. Ливер, Чарльз
  3. ^ a b c Seccombe 1911, p. 508.
  4. ^ Charles James Lever (1847) The Knight of Gwynne, Chapman and Hall, London (digitized by Google Books)
  5. 1 2 Charles James Lever // Encyclopædia Britannica (англ.)
  6. 1 2 Charles Lever // Internet Speculative Fiction Database (англ.) — 1995.
  7. Bassett T. J. At the Circulating Library (англ.) — 2007.

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