A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens

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What is an analysis of Dickens's description of the Ghost of Christmas Present?

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The narrator provides a lengthy description of the Ghost of Christmas Present in the third stave (or chapter) of the novel. It wears a "deep green robe," and the walls are all hung with "living green" as well, and the green color as well as the description of the evergreen decorations seem to connect him both to nature as well as to Jesus Christ, through the symbolism of the evergreen (that never dies). Similarly, on his head, he wears a "holly wreath" that can be interpreted similarly: it is made of evergreen, which never dies, and is a circle, which never ends (like the life of Jesus, whose birth Christmas celebrates).

The spirit's "breast was bare, and his feet are as well, which seems to signify that he has nothing to hide and that he has no need of protection from the world. He has "dark brown curls" that are "long and free," apparently symbolizing his unconstrained nature. Further, he has an "open hand" that signifies his generosity of spirit; consider the torch he carries from which he sprinkles a kind of dust that makes people feel happy and fulfilled. He wears an "antique scabbard" and a rusty "ancient sheath," but no sword. These symbolize his peaceful nature; he has no need of weapons.

Consider, later, when he tells Scrooge that people do bad or violent things in God's name all the time but that they do those things of their own accord and that God does not ever love violence. In short, the spirit is not God, but he seems to be God's representative, connected as he is to the idea of immortality (though he, himself, is not immortal), to generosity, and to peace.

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