Search collection catalog »
E-NEWS Facebook logo Twitter logo Google logo YouTube
The Morgan Online Exhibitions
Charles Dickens's Christmas Carol | Page 60 (63 of 70)
Zoom view Quick view
« Previous Next »
Introduction

Contents/thumbnails

Dickens at work

Provenance

Preserving the manuscript

More online exhibitions

In the shop:

Christmas Carol audiobook thumbnail
Audiobook


A Christmas Carol thumbnail
Facsimile


Recording of A Christmas Carol courtesy of Naxos AudioBooks.


Listen:

60

For the first time the hand appeared to shake.

"Good Spirit," he pursued, as down upon the ground he fell before it. "Your nature intercedes for me, and pities me. Assure me that I yet may change these shadows you have shewn me, by an altered life!"

The kind hand trembled.

"I will honor Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year. I will live in the Past, the Present, and the Future. The Spirits of all Three shall strive within me. I will not shut out the lessons that they teach. Oh tell me, I may sponge away the writing on this stone!"

In his agony, he caught the spectral hand. It sought to free itself, but he was strong in his entreaty, and detained it. The Spirit, stronger yet, repulsed him.

Holding up his hands in one last prayer to have his fate reversed, he saw an alteration in the phantom's hood and dress. It shrunk, collapsed, and dwindled down into a bedpost.

Charles Dickens (1812–1870)
Autograph manuscript signed, December 1843
Page 60
Purchased by Pierpont Morgan before 1900; MA 97

Compelled by personal financial difficulties, Dickens wrote A Christmas Carol in only six weeks, during a period of intense creativity in fall 1843. The original manuscript of A Christmas Carol reveals Dickens's method of composition, allowing us to see the author at work. The pace of writing and revision, apparently contiguous, is urgent, rapid, and boldly confident. Deleted text is struck out with a cursive and continuous looping movement of the pen and replaced with more active verbs—to achieve greater vividness or immediacy of effect— and fewer words for concision. This heavily revised sixty-six-page draft—the only manuscript of the story—was sent to the printer in order for the book to be published on 19 December, just in time for the Christmas market.


Top of page


© The Morgan Library & Museum, 225 Madison Avenue, New York, NY 10016, (212) 685-0008

Home Museum »
Visit the Museum
Exhibitions
Calendar
Public Programs
Education
Collection »
Collection highlights
Online Exhibitions
Music Manuscripts Online
Conservation
The Drawing Institute
Multimedia
CORSAIR Collection Catalog
Research »
CORSAIR Collection Catalog
Research Services
Reading Room
Research Guides
The Drawing Institute
Photography & Rights
About »
Press
History of the Morgan
The Morgan Campus
Employment
Internships
Volunteer
Support »
Membership
Make a Donation
Corporate Membership
Corporate Entertaining
Shop Contact

E-News | Site Index | Terms and Conditions