Christmas Ghost Stories

Olivia Bennet

Well, ladies and gents!

The term ghost refers etymologically to a figment of the imagination. Ghosts, or spirits, shadows, gnomes are intangible forms that move between the natural and the supernatural.

Urban myths and scary stories haunt our thoughts and nightmares, and whether they are false or true can never be answered with certainty. Originally, these stories were part of an oral tradition that was passed down from generation to generation, varied or not. The so-called winter tales, synonymous with the imaginary and the phantasmagoric, appear to have been a popular place in the festivities of the Elizabethan period.

In Shakespeare’s work, “A Winter’s Tale” (1623), Prince Mamillius states: “A sad tale’s best for winter. I have one, of sprites and goblins.

In the Victorian era, at Christmas and New Year’s Eve, it was an established ritual to gather around the fireplace and tell stories of these strange creatures wandering at night.

Well, keep reading, hun! 🙂

“A Christmas Carol” by Charles Dickens (1843)

The classic Christmas story of Charles Dickens starring Ebenezer Scrooge was a role model in the history of literature.

The festive spirit did not touch him and the visits by the ghosts of the past and the future made the man reconsider and realize the value of kindness and charity.

“Ghosts And Family Legends: A Volume For Christmas” by Catherine Crowe (1859)

In December 1858, Catherine Crowe’s friends and relatives gathered in a villa in England. Around the fireplace, they were discussing whether there was life after death and everyone was telling a personal story with ghosts.

Miss P. was engaged to an army officer who was in India. One night he appeared in front of her, picked up a chair, sat next to her, and talked to her for half an hour. He was looking at his watch and told her it was time for him to leave. A month later Miss P. received a letter that her fiancée had been killed the same night he had visited her! Creepy, right?

Storytelling lasts for eight nights and guests tell incidents with ghosts, strange dreams and other myths they’ve heard. The reason Catherine Crowe decided to write these stories is that her grandfather died on Christmas Eve and there were reports that the villa was haunted…brrr!

“A Strange Christmas Game” by J.H. Riddell (1868)

Two siblings, John and Claire Lester, inherited a home in Martingdale. One of the previous owners, Jeremy Lester, mysteriously disappeared on New Year’s Eve. This night they were determined to stay awake all night to find out if there were ghosts in the house.

“They’re in the oak parlor,” Claire whispers. Some are at home with them and play card games.

“The Turn of the Screw” by Henry James (1898)

American novelist Henry James (1843 – 1916), studying at Harvard, lived in London and Paris. In the book “The Turn of the Screw” he transfers us to an old mansion where the new governess must protect Miles and Flora from the ghosts that seem to be circulating inside the building.

“The Turn of the Screw” was originally published in 1898 in twelve parts in the American magazine Colliers Weekly. It has been transferred to theater and cinema.

Thank you for reading this article of mine and write below your replies so that I can see them! 

And please let me know your thoughts—did you enjoy the topic? 

If there is anything else you’d be interested in reading about the Regency Era, feel free to let me know…

…and who knows? Maybe you will read about it soon!

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! It’s that time of the year again, so prepare to have the best time ever with friends and family!

God Bless!

Written by Olivia Bennet

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