A Christmas Carol

A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens.

  • A Christmas Carol is a classic Christmas story written by Charles Dickens (1812 – 1870).
  • The first version of A Christmas Carol was published on December 19th in 1843 by Chapman & Hall.
  • A Christmas Carol is a so called novella which is longer than a short story but shorter than a novel.
  • Charles Dickens was only 31 one years old when A Christmas Carol was published.
  • A Christmas Carol is Charles Dickens most famous work and probably the world’s most widely read book about Christmas.
  • The ghosts in A Christmas Carol are: Jacob Marley (Ebenezer Scrooge’s former business partner) and the Ghosts of Christmases Past, Present and Yet to Come.
  • A Christmas Carol is divided into the following parts:
    • Stave I. Marley’s ghost.
    • Stave II. The first of the three spirits.
    • Stave III. The second of the three spirits.
    • Stave IV. The last of the three spirits.
    • Stave V. The end of it.

The storyline

A Christmas Carol tells the story of Ebenezer Scrooge, a greedy and wicked businessman who believes that Christmas is humbug, but whose personality is changed for the better after being plagued by ghosts on Christmas night.

Preface

This is the words Charles Dickens wrote in the preface of A Christmas Carol.

I have endeavoured in this Ghostly little book, to raise the Ghost of an Idea, which shall not put my readers out of humour with themselves, with each other, with the season, or with me.

May it haunt their houses pleasantly, and no one wish to lay it.

Their faithful Friend and Servant,

C. D.

December, 1843.

The beginning of A Christmas Carol

This is how A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens: Stave one – Marley’s ghost begins.

Marley 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. Scrooge signed it: and Scrooge’s name was good upon ‘Change, for anything he chose to put his hand to. Old Marley was as dead as a door-nail.

Mind! I don’t mean to say that I know, of my own knowledge, what there is particularly dead about a door-nail. I might have been inclined, myself, to regard a coffin-nail as the deadest piece of ironmongery in the trade. But the wisdom of our ancestors is in the simile; and my unhallowed hands shall not disturb it, or the Country’s done for. You will therefore permit me to repeat, emphatically, that Marley was as dead as a door-nail.

Scrooge knew he was dead? Of course he did. How could it be otherwise? Scrooge and he were partners for I don’t know how many years. Scrooge was his sole executor, his sole administrator, his sole assign, his sole residuary legatee, his sole friend, and sole mourner. And even Scrooge was not so dreadfully cut up by the sad event, but that he was an excellent man of business on the very day of the funeral, and solemnised it with an undoubted bargain.