Most everyone knows the story of Ebeneezer Scrooge from Charles Dicken’s A Christmas Carol. The elderly miser who hates Christmas. With his catchphrase “Bah Humbug” Scrooge became known for denouncing the holiday and the season all together. Rudely, telling this nephew Fred that he won’t join him for Christmas dinner with his wife, whom Scrooge looks down upon for being poor. Then threatening his only employee, Bob Cratchit, that he will be fired for supporting Fred’s love of the holiday. Followed by telling charity workers and Christmas carolers to go away with no money at all. This seems to be a common thing to happen with Scrooge on Christmas.
That is until one Christmas Eve when he is visited by his dead partner, Jacob Marley, who past seven years before that he starts his journey to change his view on Christmas. Marley warns Scrooge of what is about to happen in the night with the visit of the three spirits. Scrooge tells a chained up Marley that he was a good man only to be told that he was nothing more than a man of business who lived off his fellow man. At the end of the visit, Scrooge is shown the evil spirits that torture those who are good outside his window.
Starting at one o’clock in the morning Scrooge is visited by the ghosts of Christmas past, present, and future. Each one shows Scrooge something different that leads him to embracing the Christmas spirit. The Ghost of Christmas Past reminds him of how he loved Christmas in his youth. A lonely young boy who is hated by his father, yet loved dearly by his sister Fan. Fan tells Ebeneezer that their father has changed their ways and he is to come home for Christmas. Only to have the happy occasion last a short while as he is about is to be sent off to be an apprentice at Fezziwigs. Flashing forward a couple of years we see a happy Ebeneeser partake in the Christmas festivities of dancing and singing. There he meets a young girl, Belle, who he falls in love with. This love was not to last long because Ebeneezer was more focused on business and Belle had no money. Later on we learn that Fan died giving birth to her only son, Fred, his only living relative whom he ignores. Towards the end of the Ghost of Christmas Past’s visit, Scrooge becomes angry and sad due to the pain he is experiencing again.
Then there is the Ghost of Christmas present. Shown as a jolly man dressed in a green robe in a room filled with holiday treats. This is the time Scrooge starts to change his ways towards the ones he looks down upon. When we are first introduced to Scrooge he shows his distaste for the poor claiming they should be dead rather than alive. When Scrooge sees the family of Bob Cratchit, his loyal and sole employee, he is touched by the toast that is given in his name. Only to have it be trashed upon by Bob Cratchit’s wife because of his treatment of her husband. This is when Tiny Tim makes his appearance. The youngest son of Bob Cratchit who is crippled. The Ghost of Christmas Present tells Scrooge that Tim will die if the shadows of the future remain the same. Scrooge is terrified and shocked at this begging the ghost to tell him that it not be true only to have his words be thrown back at him about the poor.
From there on the Ghost of Christmas Present brings him to the home of his nephew Fred and his wife. They are having a party that Scrooge was invited to, but he declined rudely. He looks in upon his only living relative to see that Fred takes after Fan in his love of Christmas. Due to Fan’s love, Ebeneezer start to see Fred in a different light. After seeing Fred and being taken from the party, Scrooge is introduced to Ignorance and Want. Underneath the robe of the Ghost of Christmas present are two of mans horrific possessions. Seeing these two shakes Scrooge to the core as he starts to understand how his ignorance and want have made others around him suffer.
Unlike the two former ghosts, the Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come is a scary fellow. Dressed in a black robe with no face to show and bones for a hand Scrooge is shown a nightmare future. Everyone around him is glad that he is dead and selling all of his belongings for profit. Bob Cratchit and his family are depressed due to Tiny Tim dying. Fred and his wife don’t care about him now that he is gone. After seeing all of this, Scrooge is taken to his tombstone and shown the path to Hell. From there he makes a promise to keep Christmas well for the rest of his life.
Waking up in his bed the next morning, Scrooge is a changed man. Happy and jolly, he celebrates Christmas along side everyone else. The first thing he does is buy a Christmas turkey that is bigger than Tiny Tim for the Cratchit family. Then donating a large amount of money to charity to help the poor. Finally, on Christmas day he goes to visit his nephew Fred for dinner where he is welcomed with open arms. The next day, he tells Bob Cratchit that he is going to raise his salary and help his family out. All of this leads to Tiny Tim being able to get well. Scrooge is said to have kept Christmas well staying true to his word.
The story of Ebeneezer Scrooge in A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens is a true classic. Having been translated into film and theater, this is one story that will live on. The story of renewal and the glimpse of what the Christmas Spirit looks like shines on. Charles Dickens created this classic story after witnessing the terrible conditions the poor work in. The story was a best seller becoming a classic to read around the holidays, with Dickens doing a few himself. A Christmas Carol, is a Christmas tradition that I hope lives on for many generations to come.