So that magical time of the year is nearly here again – but when you are decorating your tree and hanging your mistletoe, do you ever think where those traditions come from? Have a look at a few of these Christmas traditions, and you may be surprised how they started out to become what we know today!
Mistletoe: A favourite Christmas particularly with those hoping to meet the object of their affections under it! Mistletoe has long been associated with Christmas, but originally the Druids believed that it was a plant that fell from the heavens and grew into a tree – symbolising reconciliation between heaven and earth – which is why a kiss underneath it became popular.
Father Christmas: The big guy himself, you probably know, started out a s St Nicholas, the patron saint of Children and Sailors (which is very appropriate considering all those children he meets and all the travelling he does!). His feast day in Holland was originally celebrated on 6th December, but by 1600, word had spread across to Germany, where he became Kriss Kringle, where he rode a horse through the sky and gave gifts to good children. Although in this time he was accompanied by a sinister elf character known as black Peter, who travelled with him and whipped naughty children! Luckily, it seems Black Peter has cheered up a bit in is old age and taken a job with other elves in his workshop in the North Pole!
Ice rink: Most years in the town where you live there will be an ice skating rink where people can go get a drink, some snacks and skate together. This is a fun, fast and thrilling way to spend christmas but it also comes with its dangers. People do often get injured at these kind of events which is why the organisers try to put in things like Events Medical Cover in place which can be sourced at links including https://outdoormedicalsolutions.co.uk which will keep you feeling safe and covered.
Christmas Tree: Trees were worshipped in many cultures long before the traditional Christian Christmas celebration, but the Christmas Tree that we know today was another tradition we can than the Germans for. St. Boniface spent time in Germany during the 8th Century converting the German people to Christianity. During this time, they started to decorate the fir trees and bring them indoors, as the trees are evergreen they became a symbol of Christianity, the everlasting love of Jesus. In Britain, trees were not introduced until Victorian times, when Prince Albert (who was German) brought one over to Britain for his wife, Queen Victoria! Nowadays, people like to decorate their trees and also their homes – pretty fairy lights and festive designer Christmas fabrics.