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snopes
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Comment: Why nothing on Ebenezer Scrooge? There are a number of stories
arising from Charles Dickens' A CHRISTMAS CAROL, the story in which
Scrooge appears, including:

After publishing his story, Dickens had to sue two unscrupulous writers
who had plagiarized his story and won the lawsuit. Strange but true.

An actor named Seymour Hicks played Scrooge upon the stage and went on
to appear in three separate versions of the story. Again, strange but
true.

Charles Dickens named Jacob Marley after his doctor, Dr. Miles Marley.
Again, strange but true.

Scrooge is clean-shaven in the original novel - not true. He is clearly
described as having "whiskers on his chin" that he has to shave off the
next morning before leaving for his now-famous walkabout. The idea has
been made popular because many of the actors who have portrayed Scrooge
have indeed been clean-shaven, including Alistair Sim and Patrick "Captain
Jean-Luc Picard of the Federation starship ENTERPRISE" Stewart.

It is also not true that in the original novel there is a dramatic
graveyard scene where Scrooge falls or is pushed into his own open grave.
What actually happens is that the Spirit of Christmas Yet to Come (not the
Spirit of Christmas Future as is popularly thought) falls in on itself
when Scrooge grabs onto the Spirit's hand. This idea has appeared only in
film version of the novel, where the director or screenwriter wanted to
add a little - need I say it? - pizzazz to the scene.

The original novel inspired a young artist to come up with another
Scrooge: Uncle Scrooge McDuck. The artist's name was Carl Barks, and he
wrote and drew the classic story "night on bear mountain" (the title
spoofs Mussorgsky's magnum opus NIGHT ON BARE MOUNTAIN) for WALT DISNEY
MAGAZINE for December 1947.

In the original novel, Scrooge's occupation is never clearly stated; all
we know is that he had a partner named Jacob Marley who is dead and a
clerk named Bob Cratchit (and, contrary to popular belief, Bob doesn't
become Scrooge's new partner at novel's end).

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Queen of Slugs
I'll Be Home for After Christmas Sales


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quote:
The original novel inspired a young artist to come up with another
Scrooge: Uncle Scrooge McDuck. The artist's name was Carl Barks, and he
wrote and drew the classic story "night on bear mountain" (the title
spoofs Mussorgsky's magnum opus NIGHT ON BARE MOUNTAIN) for WALT DISNEY
MAGAZINE for December 1947.

Small correction- Mussorgsky's title was "Night on Bald Mountain", not Bare Mountain. (Has someone been thinking about cowboys?)

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KatrinaDuck
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quote:
Originally posted by snopes:
After publishing his story, Dickens had to sue two unscrupulous writers
who had plagiarized his story and won the lawsuit. Strange but true.

An actor named Seymour Hicks played Scrooge upon the stage and went on
to appear in three separate versions of the story. Again, strange but
true.

Charles Dickens named Jacob Marley after his doctor, Dr. Miles Marley.
Again, strange but true.

None of this seems all that strange to me, sorry. Am I missing something?

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Jack Dylan
Deck the Malls


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quote:
None of this seems all that strange to me, sorry. Am I missing something?
I second that. None of them seem particularly strange.

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Jay Tea
The "Was on Sale" Song


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quote:
In the original novel, Scrooge's occupation is never clearly stated
Scrooge and Marley were merchants, with Scrooges talents firmly seated in the counting house, although of course after Marley's death he answered to both names, it was all the same to him [Wink]

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jdmarlin06
I Saw Three Shipments


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quote:
Originally posted by snopes:


Charles Dickens named Jacob Marley after his doctor, Dr. Miles Marley.
Again, strange but true.


you mean he based a character in his play after a real person. get outta here!!! [Wink]
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snopes
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quote:
Small correction -- Mussorgsky's title was "Night on Bald Mountain", not Bare Mountain.
"Night on Bald Mountain" is the most common English translation of Mussorgsky's title. "Night on Bare Mountain" is an equally valid (albeit less common) English rendering of the title:

 -

- snopes

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Dog Friendly
Carol of the Bills


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I read an article years ago that made several points to indicate that the Cratchit family was not all that poor, by the standards of the time. I'm working from memory here, but if I recall correctly:

They had their own home, and lived in Camden Town which was (then) not a slum, but a middle-class neighborhood. Excuse me, "neighbourhood".

Of four children, Belinda, Peter, Martha, and Tiny Tim, only one of them (the eldest) worked.

They could afford a goose for Christmas dinner.

Bob was literate. He kept Scrooge's accounts. This was quite a saleable skill in Dickens' time, and would have allowed Mr. Cratchit to find a new job quite easily if he wasn't happy with his wages or working conditions.

There may have been more in the article, as I say I read it many years ago.

Comments?

Dog (I wear the chains I forged in life!) Friendly

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Jay Tea
The "Was on Sale" Song


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quote:
I read an article years ago that made several points to indicate that the Cratchit family was not all that poor, by the standards of the time. I'm working from memory here, but if I recall correctly:

That was the point - he ought not to have been poor, but with Scrooge as his paymaster he had to scratch a living, and his inner-loyalty prvented him from moving to a cushier option, which in turn seemingly doomed his family to an existence of poverty and woe.

"A merry Christmas, Bob!'' said Scrooge, with an earnestness that could not be mistaken, as he clapped him on the back. ``A merrier Christmas, Bob, my good fellow, than I have given you for many a year! I'll raise your salary, and endeavour to assist your struggling family, and we will discuss your affairs this very afternoon, over a Christmas bowl of smoking bishop, Bob! Make up the fires, and buy another coal-scuttle before you dot another i, Bob Cratchit."

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Dog Friendly
Carol of the Bills


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Huh? But they weren't poor, by the standards of the time. Not wealthy, maybe, but pretty comfortable, or at least that was the point of the article.

And why would Bob have been loyal to the Scrooge-that-was? With a family to support?

I don't think I understand your response.

Dog (Are there no prisons?) Friendly

--------------------
"Nobody ever got stoned and beat up his old lady" -- Spence, snapdragonfly's friend

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Jay Tea
The "Was on Sale" Song


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Well Dog' it's pretty clear I don't understand what you are banging on about either [Wink]

Cratchit 'was' poor for a man in his position. He 'should' have been wealthier, regardless of the fact that he still had it good compared to many, but the family meals were still meagre, he couldn't afford extra coal for his grate at work etc etc Not in the workhouse perhaps, but 'obviously' poorer than a merchant's clerk should have been. This was my point.

quote:

And why would Bob have been loyal to the Scrooge-that-was? With a family to support?

Why else did he stay? The stimulating conversation? The extra time off at Christmas?

Dickens explored the human condition, many of us remain loyal to tyrants for various reasons. Cratchit felt loyal to the firm and to Scrooge, for all his sins. And of course, his loyalty was rewarded by Scrooges ultimate change of character.

--------------------
This is where I come up with something right? Something really clever...

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Blatherskite
I'm Dreaming of a White Sale


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quote:
Originally posted by Dog Friendly:
I read an article years ago that made several points to indicate that the Cratchit family was not all that poor, by the standards of the time.

Were they meant to be the poorest of the poor?

The poorest of the poor were the people Scrooge refused to give charity to.

I think the Cratchits were just meant to be an ordinary family made poorer by Scrooge's stinginess (and possibly by looking after Tiny Tim?). They might have had to scrape and save for that goose, or they might have been miserable enough not to bother, but they still got it because it was Christmas. They celebrated with what they had, while Scrooge lived in cold, dark rooms and ignored his family. If they had been written too poor to have a bit of a Christmas do, Scrooge would have had less of a reason to think 'Why shouldn't I?'.

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TrishDaDish
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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quote:
Scrooge is clean-shaven in the original novel - not true. He is clearly described as having "whiskers on his chin" that he has to shave off the next morning before leaving for his now-famous walkabout. The idea has been made popular because many of the actors who have portrayed Scrooge have indeed been clean-shaven, including Alistair Sim and Patrick "Captain
Jean-Luc Picard of the Federation starship ENTERPRISE" Stewart.

Ah, yes. Because when you think "been portraying Scrooge wrong forever" you think of Patrick Stewart's performance...from 7 years ago! Man, that's ancient! [Roll Eyes]

I must admit, I have this problem with people who portray Hamlet. I mean, aside from the whole 40 year olds playing college bound melancholy princes, Hamlet is described as having a beard ("Who calls me villian? Breaks my pate across? Plucks off my beard and blows it in my face?"), but they're always clean shaven. But I don't go mental about it.

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Senior
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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quote:
Originally posted by snopes:
Scrooge is clean-shaven in the original novel - not true. He is clearly described as having "whiskers on his chin" that he has to shave off the next morning before leaving for his now-famous walkabout.

If Scrooge had a beard, then he wouldn't have had to shave. I have a beard and I don't shave. In fact, not shaving is how I have a beard. Like most men, Scrooge was clean shaven and shaved "the whiskers on his chin" every morning.

--------------------
Ad astra per asparagus.

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snopes
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quote:
Scrooge is clean-shaven in the original novel - not true. He is clearly
described as having "whiskers on his chin" that he has to shave off the
next morning before leaving for his now-famous walkabout.

But all that might mean is that he had one or two day's worth of growth (especially since many men didn't shave every day back then). It's not exactly "clean-shaven," but it's a lot closer to being clean-shaven than to being bearded.

- snopes

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Senior
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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That's what I said, snopes.

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Ad astra per asparagus.

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Christie
The Bills of St. Mary's


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quote:
Originally posted by TrishDaDish:
I must admit, I have this problem with people who portray Hamlet. I mean, aside from the whole 40 year olds playing college bound melancholy princes, Hamlet is described as having a beard ("Who calls me villian? Breaks my pate across? Plucks off my beard and blows it in my face?"), but they're always clean shaven. But I don't go mental about it.

I had always understood that Hamlet was supposed to be about 30. I can't recall now what proofs (if any) were given for this but I remember reading and being told this on several occasions.

Given Hamlet's demeanour in the play I would vastly prefer to believe he is in fact "college bound" as you say, rather then a 30 yr old.

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If you can keep your head when all about you are losing theirs, it's just possible you haven't grasped the situation. - Jean Kerr

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Steve
Happy Holly Days


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Hamlet's age is pretty clearly given as thirty in the graveyard scene in one version of the play.

ETA:
HAMLET
How long hast thou been a
grave-maker?

First Clown
Of all the days i' the year, I came to't that day
that our last king Hamlet overcame Fortinbras.

HAMLET
How long is that since?

First Clown
Cannot you tell that? every fool can tell that: it
was the very day that young Hamlet was born; he that
is mad, and sent into England.

[snip]

First Clown
I have been sexton here, man
and boy, thirty years.


On the other hand, it seems odd that a 30 year old would want to go back to his university.

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Christie
The Bills of St. Mary's


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It could be that he just wants to go back to Wittenberg (IIRC it was Wittenberg) where he had been carefree and happy when he was a student. That would have been consistent with his character. I think! I should re-read the play before I say anything else [Smile] .

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If you can keep your head when all about you are losing theirs, it's just possible you haven't grasped the situation. - Jean Kerr

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Brad from Georgia
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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Scrooge had "a frosty rime" on his chin in the afternoons--a heavy five o'clock shadow, not a beard, and frosty because it was white. But then Scrooge carried his own low temperature about with him. Maybe that was why Bob stayed on--the counting-house was so comfortable in those sultry British summers.

Did Dickens actually play Scrooge in theatrical versions of the book? I know he had a "performance script," a cut-down reading-aloud version of the novel, but it was a one-man show, a reading of the book, not a regular stage play.

For that matter, Count Dracula is described at one point in that novel as strolling about on a sunny afternoon wearing a natty suit and straw hat, but you don't see that in most of the movie versions.

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Steve
Happy Holly Days


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As part of my ongoing efforts to prove myself the smartest person on earth,I was going to disagree with you at great length and say that Hamlet had just come from the university.

But then I realized I wasn't so sure (I mean I'm not sure about Hamlet--I'm sure I'm the smartest guy ever). Anyway, I found this webpage where people discuss the whole thing better than I ever could, and the first post backs up what you say.
http://www.greenspun.com/bboard/q-and-a-fetch-msg.tcl?msg_id=00ARd7

Okay, so can I still be second smartest person ever?

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Senior
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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I read somewhere that if Hamlet and Othello changed places, the two plays would be a lot shorter. Hamlet would see through Iago's machinations very quickly. Othello would kill Claudius at the first opportunity.

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Steve
Happy Holly Days


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Harold Bloom mentions that, Senior.
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Christie
The Bills of St. Mary's


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quote:
Originally posted by Steve:
As part of my ongoing efforts to prove myself the smartest person on earth,I was going to disagree with you at great length and say that Hamlet had just come from the university.

But then I realized I wasn't so sure (I mean I'm not sure about Hamlet--I'm sure I'm the smartest guy ever). Anyway, I found this webpage where people discuss the whole thing better than I ever could, and the first post backs up what you say.

Okay, so can I still be second smartest person ever?

I just did some googling as well and I can't believe how controversial this subject is*! Wow. It looks like there are some pretty learned people out there who could make a good case for several different interpretations of his age - for many valid reasons.

Personally I'd really like to believe Hamlet is only meant to be about 18 as I can still recall the feeling of "what the hell" that I got when I was first told he was 30. I lost a lot of my sympathy for him then. Still adore the play though [Cool] .

*EDIT - I mean the subject of Hamlet's age, not that you are the smartest guy ever!

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If you can keep your head when all about you are losing theirs, it's just possible you haven't grasped the situation. - Jean Kerr

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Brad from Georgia
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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My theory is that the play covers twelve years, and there's a lot going on that Shakespeare never bothered to write about.

Fortinbras's ten-year march through Poland, f'rinstance.

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Singing in the Drizzle
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quote:
Originally posted by snopes:

Scrooge is clean-shaven in the original novel - not true. He is clearly
described as having "whiskers on his chin" that he has to shave off the
next morning before leaving for his now-famous walkabout. The idea has
been made popular because many of the actors who have portrayed Scrooge
have indeed been clean-shaven, including Alistair Sim and Patrick "Captain
Jean-Luc Picard of the Federation starship ENTERPRISE" Stewart.


Just popped the DVD in for the Patrick Stewart version of A Christmas Carol. He definatly needs a shave.
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Toys for big boys.
Deck the Malls


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The book is a bit short to be a novel though, isnt it? The version I studied for Enlgish Lit GCSE was around 100 pages long.

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Kathy B
Angels Wii Have Heard on High


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quote:
After publishing his story, Dickens had to sue two unscrupulous writers who had plagiarized his story and won the lawsuit. Strange but true.
Dickens did not sue two writers; he sued a publishing company called Lee and Haddock. Dickens took them to court and won, but they declared bankruptcy and Dickens wound up liable for £700 of court costs. Source
quote:
An actor named Seymour Hicks played Scrooge upon the stage and went on to appear in three separate versions of the story.
Seynour Hicks played Scrooge on stage and in the 1913 silent film adaptation of ACC called Scrooge. He co-wrote the screenplay for the 1935 film Scrooge and p[layed the title role. Source 1 Source 2
quote:
Charles Dickens named Jacob Marley after his doctor, Dr. Miles Marley.
It was not Dicken's doctor.
quote:
Jacob Marley’s name was the surname of Dr. Miles Marley who practiced in Cork Street. He met Dickens at a party, and, knowing that the novelist was interested in unusual names, mentioned that he thought his own name quite remarkable. Dickens reportedly replied: “Your name will be a household word before the year is out.”
Source (a Google cache)

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robbiev - singin' off key
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quote:
Originally posted by Singing in the Drizzle:
Just popped the DVD in for the Patrick Stewart version of A Christmas Carol. He definatly needs a shave.

OMG!!?!??!11/!? You own that? And I thought I had a rather extensive DVD collection. Guess I'm an amateur.

Robbiev -make it so- 427

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TrishDaDish
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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Woof! All I was sayin' was Hamlet is described in the play as having a beard, but most movies have him clean shaven, like our friend Scrooge.

I only have a minor quibble about the actor's ages in movie versions of Hamlet, but then, I also love the play and have quibbles with a lot of stuff that gets cut out for the sake of a short version in film form. (Save Branaughs's version, but even he screws it up with saying "in our philosophy" instead of "in your philosophy". GAH!!!)

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Kathy B
Angels Wii Have Heard on High


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I can't find any mention of Scrooge having "whiskers on his chin"."

Text of A Christmas Carol

I searched for these words
whiskers
chin
shav (which would get me shave, shaven, shaving)
shaving
beard
face

I got no hits on "whiskers" or "beard."

What I found:
"The cold within him froze his old features, nipped his pointed nose, shrivelled his cheek, stiffened his gait; made his eyes red, his thin lips blue; and spoke out shrewdly in his grating voice. A frosty rime was on his head, and on his eyebrows, and his wiry chin. He carried his own low temperature always about with him; he iced his office in the dog-days; and didn't thaw it one degree at Christmas." You could argue that the rime was metaphorical, not physical.
AND
Scrooge is sending a turkey to Bob Cratchit. "The hand in which he wrote the address was not a steady one, but write it he did, somehow..." He then gets ready to go out. "Shaving was not an easy task, for his hand continued to shake very much; and shaving requires attention, even when you don't dance while you are at it. " There is nothing to suggest he is doing anything more than his routine morning shave. He is certainly not mentioned as removing a beard and there is nothing that even approximates the words "whiskers on his chin.'

John Leech provided six illustrations for the original 1843 edition. Here is Scrooge with Ignorance and Want.
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See all the illustrations here. Scrooge is clearly clean shaven.

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The plural of "anecdote" is not "data."

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