What is the lifespan of the Ghost of Christmas Present in A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens?   

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kathik eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol, Ebenezer Scrooge is visited by his deceased partner, Jacob Marley, and by three spirits. We find out near the end of the book that all three visitations took place in the span of one night. When the Ghost of Christmas Present is about to leave, Scrooge notices how much the spirit has aged since he first arrived and asks him about his lifespan. The Ghost of Christmas Present says,

"'My life upon this globe is very brief," replied the Ghost. "It ends tonight.'" (Dickens 85)

He goes on to say that his life will be over at midnight. Earlier in the stave, the Ghost of Christmas Present tells Scrooge that he has "more than eighteen hundred" brothers, and he is very young. This possibly hints at the idea that he and his brothers are only here for a very short time to impart a lesson such as the one he is giving Scrooge.

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A Christmas Carol

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