For as long as Christmas has been celebrated poets and writers have sought to explore every aspect of it whether the story of the Nativity or the festive traditions that have grown up over the centuries. A Literary Christmas is a seasonal anthology that collects poems short stories and prose extracts by some of the greatest poets and writers in the English language. Like Charles Dickens’s ghosts of Christmas past and present these texts are representative of times old and new – from John Donne’s Elizabethan hymn to the baby Jesus to Rudyard Kipling’s Christmas in India from Thomas Tusser counting the cost of a Tudor feast to P.G. Wodehouse’s wry short story about Christmas on a diet.Enjoy a convivial Christmas Day as described by Samuel Pepys Anthony Trollope George Eliot or Nancy Mitford. Venture out into the snow in the company of Jane Austen John Evelyn and Dickens’s ever-popular Mr Pickwick. Entertain the children with the seasonal tales of Dylan Thomas Kenneth Grahame and George Mackay Brown. For any lover of great literature A Literary Christmas is the perfect gift.This is a new edition – with fresh jacket design – of the British Library’s popular Christmas anthology. Many major poets and writers in the English language are represented in these pages.