At last the dinner was all done, the cloth was cleared, the hearth swept, and the fire made up. The compound in the jug being tasted, and considered perfect, apples and oranges were put upon the table, and a shovel-full of chestnuts on the fire. Then all the Cratchit family drew round the hearth, in what Bob Cratchit called a circle, meaning half a one; and at Bob Cratchit's elbow stood the family display of glass.

meaning half a one - they formed half circle right?


at Bob Cratchit's elbow stood the family display of glass

I can't really understand a sentence above.


The first sentence explains that they have had dinner, tidied up, prepared and lit a fire. When it then says 'compound' it refers to the earlier passage:

compounded some hot mixture in a jug with gin and lemons, and stirred it round and round, and put it on the hob to simmer

Following dinner they have apples, oranges, and roast chestnuts ready, and a hot alcoholic drink has been tasted. They then gather round the hearth in a 'circle' - the author is noting it's really a half-circle, as there would be a wall in the way.

"at Bob Cratchit's elbow stood the family display of glass". If you were wealthy, you might have your glass in a cabinet for display. As Bob is poor, his display isn't very impressive, and probably just on a table.

Two tumblers and a custard cup without a handle.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy