Why Did the Grinch Hate Christmas?

The Grinch is an interesting and unforgettable fictional character created in 1957 by the author Theodore Seuss Geisel, more popularly known as Dr. Seuss. The character made his first appearance in the book titled ‘How the Grinch Stole Christmas’. He has become so famous and well-known that now, the word ‘Grinch’ has become synonymous with anyone who hates celebrations and festivities, especially during Christmas.

Interesting Details About the Grinch

The Grinch has become so famous not only owing to his attitude but also due to his unique appearance. In keeping with his character, the Grinch has a rather unusual and unpleasant appearance. He looks like a green monster and his entire body is covered with bright green fur. He has a cat-like face with yellow teeth and yellow eyes. To suit his grumpy image, he has red pupils in his yellow eyes and he always has a rather bitter expression on his face. He has a loose midsection and he is quite flexible when it comes to moving around. The most important characteristic of the Grinch will have to be his heart which is two sizes too small.

The Grinch hates the people of Whoville. He lives in his cave, all alone, with his pet dog, Max. From his cave, he comes down only on holidays, particularly during Christmas to wreak havoc among the residents of Whoville. He hates the Holiday season with passion and aims to sabotage the merrymaking and celebrations of Whoville residents.

As for Max, although he is a very loyal companion, the Grinch does not treat him well. When the Grinch attacks Whoville, he forces Max to help him in his malicious goal to sabotage the Christmas spirit of its people. He sets up a pair of crooked antlers on the head of Max with the purpose of disguising him as a reindeer. He also puts a sleigh on Max’s back where the stolen gifts and goods are to be placed.

Interestingly, even the mountain where the Grinch resides suits him perfectly with its rather grumpy sounding name – Mount Crumpit! He does not like the affable and happy Whos and he takes great relish in the thought that he can destroy and crush their festive spirit and enthusiasm by stealing their gifts and goodies.

Reasons for the Grinch Hating Christmas

The reason sited in the book for the Grinch’s intense hatred of Christmas is that his heart was two sizes too small. Having said that, this interesting, simple yet meaningful children’s tale, can lend itself to a variety of interpretations. That is probably the true beauty of this book and it certainly makes the readers appreciate the true spirit and essence of Christmas. It is possible that the Grinch hates Christmas because he feels alienated from society due to his nature and strange appearance.  This makes him envious and bitter and he strives to ruin happiness around him as he probably feels he has been wronged. The story also goes on to prove that mere materials gifts do not define Christmas. As the Grinch himself realizes eventually, even without material pleasures, Christmas brings along with it, immense joy, hope and a sense of belonging.

The realization that true celebration is to be with your loved ones and that sharing spreads infectious happiness, makes the Grinch regret his actions. As a consequence, he returns the stolen goodies and is soon accepted and welcomed with warmth by the Whoville people. His heart is said to grow three times bigger. This symbolically shows that he is no longer petty and mean and he has blossomed into a loving, generous being, thus embodying the true meaning of Christmas.

Adaptations of the Story

The book, ‘How the Grinch Stole Christmas’ has been adapted into a television series special in 1966. It was produced by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayor’s MGM Animation / Visual Arts and directed by Chuck Jones. This was followed by two more television specials and a musical. In 2000, Jim Carrey played the title role in his inimitable style in the movie adaptation of this book.

The timeless tale of the Grinch will continue to entertain generations of readers and his simple tale will always be sited as an example to capture the true meaning of Christmas.

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