© 2016 Shmoop University, Inc. All rights reserved.
A Christmas Carol

A Christmas Carol


by Charles Dickens

A Christmas Carol Isolation Quotes

How we cite our quotes: (Stave.Paragraph)

Quote #1

Scrooge knew [Marley] was dead? Of course he did. How could it be otherwise? Scrooge and he were partners for I don't know how many years. Scrooge was his sole executor, his sole administrator, his sole assign, his sole residuary legatee, his sole friend, and sole mourner. (1.4)

It's interesting that he and Marley basically had the same lifestyle. We initially get the sense that with Marley's death, Scrooge lost his last bridge to humanity. Which of course is immediately shown to be untrue when we meet Fred and Bob Cratchit. Why the fake out?

Quote #2

"It's not my business," Scrooge returned. "It's enough for a man to understand his own business, and not to interfere with other people's. Mine occupies me constantly. Good afternoon, gentlemen!" (1.65)

Here, Scrooge is more like Dickens's later creations, Mr. Podsnad (from Our Mutual Friend) or Mrs. General (from Little Dorrit)—characters who want to enclose and isolate the unpleasant from their sight because it's just too pesky to deal with.

Quote #3

"How it is that I appear before you in a shape that you can see, I may not tell. I have sat invisible beside you many and many a day." It was not an agreeable idea. Scrooge shivered, and wiped the perspiration from his brow. (1.155)

That's pretty creepy. Also, compare this to how Scrooge watches his own clerk from his little office. He's a bit of a ghost himself.

People who Shmooped this also Shmooped...