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Bob_Cratchit

Bob Cratchit

Robert "Bob" Cratchit is a fictional character, the abused, underpaid clerk of Ebenezer Scrooge in the Charles Dickens story A Christmas Carol.

In the story, Cratchit is seen at work, where he copies letters by hand in an underheated "dismal little cell", "a sort of tank", and in his small Camden Town home with his large family on the following Christmas Day and a future one, gatherings which Scrooge visits invisibly with the Ghost of Christmas Present and the Ghost of Christmas Future, respectively. Cratchit is repeatedly described as "little", and clothes himself in a tattered white comforter, not being able to afford a coat.

Though Cratchit is treated poorly by Scrooge, and, with a weekly salary of "but fifteen bob" (about £56/US$109 in 2005 money using the consumer price index), is not given wages enough to feed his family a proper Christmas dinner, he remains loyal to his boss, even in face of the protestations of his wife. It is partly through concern for the plight of Cratchit's youngest son, the frail and crippled Tiny Tim, that Scrooge makes the transformation from miser to philanthropist, offering Cratchit a raise and "discussion of his affairs".

Children

Six Cratchit children are mentioned in the original story, four of whom are named:

  • Martha, the eldest daughter, who works as an apprentice at a milliner's
  • Belinda, the second daughter
  • Peter, the heir, for whom his father is arranging employment at the weekly rate of 5.5 shillings
  • An unnamed younger son
  • An unnamed younger daughter
  • Tiny Tim

Portrayals of Bob Cratchit

The role of Bob Cratchit has been performed (live action, voiced or animation) by, among others:

Bob Cratchit in popular culture

  • The image of Bob Cratchit has come to symbolise poor working conditions, especially long working hours.

References

External links

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