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A Brief History Of The Holiday

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Published: 5 Dec 2012      

The birth of Jesus Christ was linked to the date December 25 in the 4th century, we find this in Roman history. The original celebrations of Christmas are derived from Roman and other festivals inEuropethat marked the winter solstice.

Some of the customs from the celebrations that are still used today, include decorating homes with greenery, giving gifts, singing songs, and eating special foods.

Christmas grew over the years with the legend of St. Nicholas. we cannot be sure how much of his history is real but the man who became St. Nicholas was around in the 4th century and is thought to be a bishop inAsia Minor.

The bishop has been attributed to many miracles a lot of which cannot be proven. Even though they cannot be proven some countries still named him their patron saint. He is also know as the patron saint of, children, poor and the sailors.

the Feast of St. Nicholas was marked on December 6 In his honour and gifts were given the night before. This tradition became well established in many countries inEuropeby the 12th century. St. Nicholas' Day and Christmas Day are so close together they eventually, became, one as their traditions were so similar.

St. Nicholas is know by many names in different countries. In The Netherlands have Sinter Klaas.; Père Noël does the same inFrance; and in Germany St. Nicholas has had many names including Klaasbuur, Burklaas, Rauklas, Bullerklaas, and Sunnercla, Father Christmas gives gifts inGreat Britainalthough Father Christmas is becoming more popular. In theUnited States, the Dutch settlers' Sinter Klaas evolved into Santa Claus.

Other Christmas facts:

  • Some Christians celebrate Jesus Christ's coming on January 6, the Epiphany, when they believe he was baptized.
  • The song "The Twelve Days of Christmas" refers to the 12 days between Christmas and the Epiphany.
  • The word Christmas comes from the Old English Cristes maesse, which means Christ's mass.
  • The story of Jesus Christ's birth is told in New Testament's gospel of Saint Luke and Saint Matthew.
  • The German word Christkindl, which means Christ child, eventually turned into Kriss Kringle.
  • The word Xmas is sometimes used instead of Christmas. In Greek, Xis the first letter of Christ's name.
  • The earliest English reference to December 25th as Christmas Day did not come until 1043.
  • In 1969, the Roman Catholic church dropped St. Nicholas' Feast Day from its calendar because his life is so unreliably documented.
  • Santa Claus generally was depicted as an elf until 1931, when Coca-Cola ads portrayed him as human-sized.
  • Rudolph didn't become Santa's ninth reindeer until 1939 when an advertising writer for the department store Montgomery Ward created him.