Monday, 22 December 2014

Dickens at Christmas

Some traditional Christmas images by John Leech.

Whether you're aware of Leech's work or not, these should be immediately familiar as they were created for the first edition of Charles Dickens "A Christmas Carol".  

Originally published in 1843, the tale caught the public imagination at a time when the Victorians were enthusiastically assimilating European customs into the old English traditions.  In the 170 years since, it has never been out of print.  

Whether you've read the original or not, the story has become so pervasive that it pretty much sets the blueprint for a very British Christmas of the industrial era - with equal measures of charity and consumption and a secular nod towards redemption. 

Adapted and parodied by everyone from Alistair Sim to The Simpsons  (not to mention the Muppets) Leech's original designs have been constantly recycled through popular culture all our lives.

No comments:

Post a Comment