Marley was dead

bones - click to enlarge

Mind! I don’t mean to say that I know, of my own knowledge, what there is particularly dead about a door-nail. I might have been inclined, myself, to regard a coffin-nail as the deadest piece of ironmongery in the trade. But the wisdom of our ancestors is in the simile; and my unhallowed hands shall not disturb it, or the Country’s done for. You will therefore permit me to repeat, emphatically, that Marley was as dead as a door-nail.

Charles Dickens (of course), A Christmas Carol

The next few pictures may seem a little out of season — I took them on Halloween, just before the boys went out to gather candy — but I actually think of Christmas as a ghostly time, too. Not just Dickens, with “A Christmas Carol”, but the whole scribbling bunch of Victorian yarn-tellers made Christmas ghost stories a tradition. So make yourself some cocoa, pull down the musty M.R. James from the shelf, and sit by the fire with some Christmas ghastliness.

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