Monday, December 5, 2016

Christmas Countdown Characters #5

Bah Humbug!

E is for Ebenezer , Scrooge that is!
Ebenezer Scrooge  is the main character in the classic Christmas novel by Charles Dickens. He is described ..."The cold within him froze his old features, nipped his pointed nose, made his eyes red, his thin lips blue, and spoke out shrewdly in his grating voice...".
 Depicted as a stereotypical nasty money lender, Ebenezer hates Christmas,  is mean to the poor and  exploits his employees - not a nice old man at all! On Christmas Eve, the ghost of his previous business partner Jacob Morley visits and warns that like him, his fate in the after life will be to wander the earth forever because of his greed for money and cold heartedness in life. The visitation of the three Christmas ghosts - the Past, the Present and the Future offers a last chance of redemption by showing Ebenezer visions of the  past love of his sister and fiancĂ©e who are now both lost to him; the pure joy and kindness of  spirit of  his nephew and that of his employee Bob Cratchit, in spite of the  current serious illness of his son, Tiny Tim; and  then the tragic death of Tiny Tim who could not be offered adequate care because of the poor salary of his father, and the lonely death of Ebenezer himself.
When Ebenezer Scrooge awakens, he finds it is Christmas morning, and he is immediately changed - he becomes the model of generosity and humanity. He is reconciled with his nephew, and becomes a benefactor to Tim Cratchit.  One could say that Ebenezer Scrooge is a miraculous transformation!
Ebenezer Scrooge has been voted the most well known Christmas character in Western literature and "scrooge" is popularly used to describe someone who is miserly and cold hearted although  Scrooge undergoes such a humane and radical personality change in the story. The phrase "Bah Humbug" is a declaration that Christmas is a fraud and  has also become  synonymous with Ebenezer Scrooge although in "A Christmas Carol" he only says this twice in the whole book and ultimately  he is the amazing example that the spirit of Christmas can indeed work miracles .

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