Did you know some of the following facts about the Christmas period and Christmas traditions and customs:
A traditional Christmas dinner in early England was the head of a pig prepared with mustard.
It is believed that the tradition of using the Crib to tell the story of the Nativity was started by St Francis of Assisi.
The tradition of the Christmas tree in Protestant countries was attributed to Martin Luther. In Catholic countries the custom was unknown up to the past century. In England the tradition was popularised by the German Prince Albert, husband of Queen Victoria. The German immigrants brought the Christmas tree to America in the 17th century. Public outdoor Christmas trees with electric candles were introduced in Finland in 1906, and in New York, USA, in 1912.
Joulupukki is the name given to Father Christmas in Finland. The name literally means “Yule Buck”.
The initials of the Three Kings — C+M+B (Caspar/Gaspar, Melchior, and Balthasar) — plus the year are inscribed in chalk over doorways in German-speaking countries on the eve of January 6th to protect house and home.
The Advent season and its celebration has changed over the years from a more serious, sombre character (including giving up things, as is done during Lent) to one of a more joyous nature — including such treats as chocolate-filled Advent calendars.
In 1171, the English King, Henry II, took Christmas festivities to Ireland.