By Allan Fuller
December's Quiz Question was:
How many ghosts appear in Charles Dickens A Christmas Carol?
And for an extra bottle...can you name them all?
4 Ghosts; Jacob Marley and the spirits of Christmas Past, Present and Yet to Come
A Christmas Carol. In Prose. Being a Ghost Story of Christmas, commonly known as A Christmas Carol, was written by Charles Dickens, first published in in 1843 It recounts the story of Ebenezer Scrooge, an elderly miser who is visited by 4 ghosts his former business partner Jacob Marley and the spirits of Christmas Past, Present and Yet to Come. After their visits, Scrooge is transformed into a kinder, gentler man.
Dickens wrote A Christmas Carol during a period when the British were exploring and re-evaluating past Christmas traditions, including carols, and newer customs such as cards and Christmas trees. He was influenced by the experiences of his own youth and by a visit to the Field Lane Ragged School, one of several establishments for London's street children. The treatment of the poor and the ability of a selfish man to redeem himself by transforming into a more sympathetic character are the key themes of the story.
Published on 19 December, the first edition sold out by Christmas Eve; by the end of 1844 thirteen editions had been released.. He went on to write four other Christmas stories in subsequent years. In 1849 he began public readings of the story, which proved so successful he undertook 127 further performances until 1870, the year of his death. A Christmas Carol has never been out of print and has been translated into several languages; the story has been adapted many times for film, stage, opera and other media.
Congratulations to Kevin McKeown, whose name was picked out of the hat to win December's Quiz - please email firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange the means of receiving your champagne!