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A Christmas Carol

Question

When Dickens first presents Scrooge he describes him as 'Hard and sharp as flint'. What is the effect of this?

2 years ago

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3 Replies

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Furman Leannon


3 Answers

Carla Profile Picture
Carla Verified Sherpa Tutor ✓

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Hi Furman,


This is a simile and it likens Scrooge to something that the reader can recognize, tough and unbreakable.


Hope this helps

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Brian R Profile Picture
Brian R Verified Sherpa Tutor ✓

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Hello Furman, the first answer is an excellent one - I want to also add that this is a reference to the Scrooge we meet at the beginning of the story not the one we read about as he sees his past self and the people he has lost. The simile also shows us his emotional state at the beginning of the story by the end his heart has changed a great deal.

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Shahanna G Profile Picture
Shahanna G Verified Sherpa Tutor ✓

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The quotation tells the reader that Scrooge is a very dislikable character as he is perceived as tough by everyone around him. However, this is rather ironic as the Hebrew translation for Ebenezer is 'stone of help'. This highlights that Scrooge may be a miserable, miserly character at the start of A Christmas Carol, but he has the capacity to change. Dickens uses Scrooge's first name to foreshadow what will later happen in the novella, that he holds the capacity to care for others such as the Cratchits and his nephew Fred.

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