Ebenezer Scrooge.

Ebenezer Scrooge is the focal character of Charles Dickens’ 1843 novella, A Christmas Carol, and arguably both one of the most famous characters created by Charles Dickens and in English literature. The miserly, bitterly cold hearted owner of a London counting-house, a modern accountant’s office, he works with his clerk Bob Catchit.

The tale of Scrooge’s redemption by a visit from his dead business partner and subsequently the three Ghosts of Christmas (Ghost of Christmas Past, Ghost of Christmas Present, and Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come) has become a defining tale of the Christmas holiday period. Ebenezer Scrooge is arguably both one of the most famous characters created by Dickens and one of the most famous in English literature.


The term ‘Scrooge’ has come into the English language as a byword for miserliness and misanthropy. Scrooge’s catchphrase, “Bah! Humbug!” is often used to express disgust with many of the modern Christmas traditions.


View our archive of fully referenced quotations said by, or related to the character Ebenezer Scrooge from the classic short story A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens.


He has the power to render us happy or unhappy; to make our service light or burdensome; a pleasure or a toil.

Background. "He has the power to render us happy or unhappy; to make our service light or burdensome; a pleasure or a toil." is a quotation from A Christmas Carol (Stave 2). A Christmas Carol is a novella, or short story, written by Charles Dickens and first published in the Christmas of 1843.   Context. Illustration from the original publication of A Christmas Carol showing a joyous Mr and Mrs Fezziwig dancing away at their Christmas party. This [...]

2018-05-11T19:42:12+00:00 Categories: A Christmas Carol|Tags: |

A tight-fisted hand at the grindstone.

Background. "A tight-fisted hand at the grindstone." is a quotation from A Christmas Carol (Stave 1). A Christmas Carol is a novella, or short story, written by Charles Dickens and first published in the Christmas of 1843.   Illustration from the original publication of A Christmas Carol showing Ebenezer Scrooge (left), here being visited by the ghost of his former business partner, Jacob Marley. Context. The quote is from a paragraph describing Ebenezer Scrooge at the beginning of [...]

2018-05-11T19:46:41+00:00 Categories: A Christmas Carol|Tags: , |

Scrooge had a very small fire, but the clerk’s fire was so very much smaller that it looked like one coal.

Background. "Scrooge had a very small fire, but the clerk’s fire was so very much smaller that it looked like one coal." is a quotation from A Christmas Carol (Stave 1). A Christmas Carol is a novella, or short story, written by Charles Dickens and first published in the Christmas of 1843.   Context. This quotation reflects the miserly attitude of the lead character Ebenezer Scrooge. Even though it is mid-Winter time, the mean-spirited Scrooge maintains only a small fire [...]

2018-05-11T19:59:59+00:00 Categories: A Christmas Carol|Tags: |

Much good may it do you! Much good it has ever done you!

Background. "Much good may it do you! Much good it has ever done you!" is a quotation from A Christmas Carol (Stave 1). A Christmas Carol is a novella, or short story, written by Charles Dickens and first published in the Christmas of 1843.   Context. The quote is from a paragraph describing Ebenezer Scrooge at the beginning of A Christmas Carol, who prefers his own company and has few friends. His nephew has visted him whilst he is working [...]

2017-12-08T13:07:10+00:00 Categories: A Christmas Carol|Tags: |

Keep Christmas in your own way, and let me keep it in mine.

Background. "Keep Christmas in your own way, and let me keep it in mine." is a quotation from A Christmas Carol (Stave 1). A Christmas Carol is a novella, or short story, written by Charles Dickens and first published in the Christmas of 1843.   Context. The quote is from a paragraph describing Ebenezer Scrooge at the beginning of A Christmas Carol, who prefers his own company and has few friends. His nephew has visted him whilst he is working [...]

2017-12-08T13:07:11+00:00 Categories: A Christmas Carol|Tags: |

It’s likely to be a very cheap funeral, for upon my life I don’t know of anybody to go to it.

Background. "It’s likely to be a very cheap funeral for upon my life I don’t know of anybody to go to it." is a quotation from A Christmas Carol (Stave 4). A Christmas Carol is a novella, or short story, written by Charles Dickens and first published in the Christmas of 1843.   Context. The quote is said by some businessmen taking about the death of Ebenezer Scrooge who are joking about the lack of people likely to be at his [...]

2018-05-11T20:57:22+00:00 Categories: A Christmas Carol|Tags: |

Solitary as an oyster.

Background. "Solitary as an oyster." is a quotation from A Christmas Carol (Stave 1). A Christmas Carol is a novella, or short story, written by Charles Dickens and first published in the Christmas of 1843.   Illustration from the original publication of A Christmas Carol showing Ebenezer Scrooge (left), here being visited by the ghost of his former business partner, Jacob Marley. Context. The quote is from a paragraph describing Ebenezer Scrooge at the beginning of A Christmas [...]

2018-05-11T20:49:38+00:00 Categories: A Christmas Carol|Tags: |

A squeezing, wrenching, grasping, scraping, clutching, covetous, old sinner!

Background. "A squeezing, wrenching, grasping, scraping, clutching, covetous, old sinner!" is a quotation from A Christmas Carol (Stave 1). A Christmas Carol is a novella, or short story, written by Charles Dickens and first published in the Christmas of 1843.   Illustration from the original publication of A Christmas Carol showing Ebenezer Scrooge (left), here being visited by the ghost of his former business partner, Jacob Marley. Context. The quote is from a paragraph describing Ebenezer Scrooge at [...]

2018-05-15T11:28:14+00:00 Categories: A Christmas Carol|Tags: |

External heat and cold had little influence on Scrooge. No warmth could warm, no wintry weather chill him.

Background. "External heat and cold had little influence on Scrooge. No warmth could warm, no wintry weather chill him." is a quotation from A Christmas Carol (Stave 1). A Christmas Carol is a novella, or short story, written by Charles Dickens and first published in the Christmas of 1843.   Illustration from the original publication of A Christmas Carol showing Ebenezer Scrooge (left), here being visited by the ghost of his former business partner, Jacob Marley. Context. This [...]

2018-05-15T11:34:27+00:00 Categories: A Christmas Carol|Tags: |

Bah! Humbug.

Background. "Bah! Humbug" is a quotation from A Christmas Carol (Stave 1). A Christmas Carol is a novella, or short story, written by Charles Dickens and first published in the Christmas of 1843.   Context. Taken from the line: "Scrooge having no better answer ready on the spur of the moment, said, “Bah!” again; and followed it up with “Humbug." The word humbug was in common use before Charles Dickens wrote this now famous phrase and was used to describe [...]

2017-10-08T19:26:24+00:00 Categories: A Christmas Carol|Tags: , |

Once upon a time—of all the good days in the year, on Christmas Eve—old Scrooge sat busy in his counting-house. It was cold, bleak, biting weather: foggy withal: and he could hear the people in the court outside, go wheezing up and down, beating their hands upon their breasts, and stamping their feet upon the pavement stones to warm them.

Background. "Once upon a time—of all the good days in the year, on Christmas Eve—old Scrooge sat busy in his counting-house. It was cold, bleak, biting weather: foggy withal: and he could hear the people in the court outside, go wheezing up and down, beating their hands upon their breasts, and stamping their feet upon the pavement stones to warm them" is a quotation from A Christmas Carol (Stave 1). A Christmas Carol is a novella, or short story, written [...]

2017-12-08T13:11:38+00:00 Categories: A Christmas Carol|Tags: , |

I am as light as a feather, I am as happy as an angel, I am as merry as a schoolboy. I am as giddy as a drunken man. A merry Christmas to everybody! A happy New Year to all the world.

Background.  "I am as light as a feather, I am as happy as an angel, I am as merry as a schoolboy. I am as giddy as a drunken man. A merry Christmas to everybody! A happy New Year to all the world" is a quotation from A Christmas Carol (Stave 5). A Christmas Carol is a novella, or short story, written by Charles Dickens and first published in the Christmas of 1843.   Context. Taken from the following passage in [...]

2018-04-24T21:28:36+00:00 Categories: A Christmas Carol|Tags: , |