Twinkling lights, chilly nights, beautifully wrapped gifts, and tall decorated evergreen trees are just a few of the images that come to mind when one thinks about the Christmas season. In some parts of the world, Christmas just isn’t Christmas without a blanket of white snow on the ground. In other places,it is about church services and silent prayers. Christmas is one of the major holidays around the world because it has become much more than a Christian holiday celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ. t has become a time for joy and togetherness no matter what your religion may be or where you arelocated. Throughout literature, countless Christmas stories have talked about the magic of Christmas and its meaning in people’s lives. However, few of them are as famous and well-loved as A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens.
First published in December of 1843, A Christmas Carol tells the story of Ebenezer Scrooge, 1)greedy businessman who has no time for charity for anyone. The perfect example of this is the relationship Scrooge has with his employee, Bob Cratchit. Although Cratchit is a kind, soft-spoken, and loyal man, Scrooge treats him with impatience and cold-heartedness.
Dickens was inspired to write A Christmas Carol for several reasons including the new-found popularity with old Christmas traditions, especially those found in the writings of Washington Irving. Dickens’ troubles while growing up were another source, which mainly helped shape Ebenezer Scrooge’s character. The third major inspiration was the 2)plight of the poor, particularly poor children. In some ways,Dickens hoped that the coming together for Christmas 3)festivities could create more harmonybetween the social classes.
The plot of A Christmas Carol is a transforming journey. On the night before Christmas, Ebenezer Scrooge is warned that he will be visited by three spirits. Although 4)startled by the vision, Scrooge dismisses it and goes to bed. Not long after, Scrooge is woken up by the Ghost of Christmas Past, who reminds him of the young man he used to be. Scrooge remembers with joy the people he loved and the fun he used to have.
The second spirit is the Ghost of Christmas Present. This spirit takes Scrooge to the home of Bob Cratchit, where he finds the Cratchit family very poor but very kind. Scrooge takes a special interest in Cratchit’s youngest son, Tiny Tim, who has a big heart and 5)boisterous spirit despite being crippled. The final spirit is the Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come. Scrooge sees the death of Cratchit’s young son. He also sees his own passing, and no one cares or has a kind word to say about him. Terrified and ashamed, Scrooge wakes up to find it is Christmas morning. He immediately sets out to change his ways and future, beginning first with Bob Cratchit and his family.
Scrooge’s journey from 6)miser to 7)Samaritan gives spotlight to the true meaning most people attach to Christmas. It’s not about how rich you are in possessions, but how rich you are in love and family. Undoubtedly, this is the reason A Christmas Carol has stood the test of time and will hold a special place in thehearts of all for many years to come.
1) greedy (a.) 贪婪的
2) plight (n.) 困境
3) festivity (n.) 欢庆，庆典
4) startle (v.) 使吓一跳
5) boisterous (a.) 活跃的，喧闹的
6) miser (n.) 守财奴，吝啬鬼
7) Samaritan (n.) 撒马利亚人，乐善好施者