How did Scrooge receive his nephew?
In Stave One of A Christmas Carol Scrooge's nephew Fred pops by to the office to wish his old Uncle Ebenezer a very Merry Christmas. But Scrooge, being Scrooge, isn't exactly in a holiday mood. He makes it clear in no uncertain terms just what he thinks of his nephew's festive greetings:
"Bah!" said Scrooge. "Humbug!"
Scrooge thinks that Christmas is just a load of nonsense, a complete waste of time. And he can't understand why someone like Fred, who's not very well-off, should be celebrating the festive season in the first place. What has he got to celebrate? Furthermore, says Scrooge, anyone who goes around with the words "Merry Christmas" on his lips should be boiled with his own pudding and have a stake of holly driven through his heart for good measure.
Fred tries his best to get the old man to enter into the Christmas spirit, but he's a lost cause—for now, at least. Thanks to the intervention of the three ghosts Scrooge will eventually come to see the error of his ways and even join a delighted Fred and his family for a spot of Christmas lunch. But for now, when Fred pays him a visit at the beginning of the story, he's just a mean, ornery old miser who hates Christmas.
check Approved by eNotes Editorial