A Christmas Carol and The Chimes

by John Holbo on December 19, 2009

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Well, not quite yet (you might remonstrate).

But it’s coming up (you must concede). So I’ve undertaken a seasonal graphic project that doesn’t involve Photoshopping squid. I love Dickens, and “A Christmas Carol” isn’t the only good Christmas story he wrote. I also like all the old, original illustrations for his books and stories. But they tend to be printed on cheap paper, and at small sizes. So I have kindly taken the trouble of scanning them in at high resolution, cleaning them up and generally making them easier to see and appreciate in all their glory. Really, a lot of these images are full of fun little details.

For tonight, two tales worth. First, “A Christmas Carol”. Second – I love the wild title page and frontispiece for this one – “The Chimes”. A New Year’s tale, technically speaking. “A Goblin Story of Some Bells that Rang an Old Year Out and a New Year In.” Kind of an odd tale, really. (As one of my fellow Valve bloggers noted last year: the moral is a bit nuts. But I still love it.)

Obviously not just these old images but the stories themselves are very much in the public domain, hence available from lots of sources as well as your local, friendly neighborhood bookstore or library. Discuss!