This biography is largely a composition of letters written by and to Charles James Lever. The compilation of the letters has been made by Edmund Downey.
young Lever took lessons in fencing and dancing, and won distinction in those arts. His father, writing at this period to Lancashire, says: "Charles is still at school. I don't know what to make of him;... he is a very smart fellow."
As his business grew, James Lever found himself advancing in social paths. He was fond of good company, and of this there was a plenitude in Dublin. The commercial depression which followed the union of the parliaments, though it had undermined many of the city's sources of wealth, tarnished its brilliancy, and destroyed its life as a political capital, had not succeeded in crushing the high spirits of the citizens. Many of the guests who enjoyed the hospitality of James Lever had suffered sadly from the political and other changes which had occurred in the early years of the nineteenth century, but they could still enjoy a good dinner and a good story, and could appreciate a good host. Much of the conversation which took place at Lever's supper or dinner-parties was of t