How Many Days Till Christmas
The countdown to christmas has begun, and to help you we have provided you with a handy christmas countdown timer which you can check as often as you like. ‘How Many Days Till Christmas’ also offers up some great christmas gift ideas and if you sign up to our mailing list will receive the best offers and gift ideas for your loved ones.
Planning a Holiday over Christmas?
Make sure to check the dates for all of the bank holidays 2012 which happen at that time.
Planning a Holiday before that?
Ask yourself “when do the clocks go back?” and make sure it doesn’t disrupt your travel plans.
A brief history of Christmas…
We all celebrate Christmas because it is what we all traditionally know as Jesus’ birthday but it is actually very unlikely that he was actually born on what we celebrate as Christmas day, the 25th December.
Prior to the Saxons converting to Christianity Christmas was traditionally called ‘Yule’ which is actually Saxon for the word mid-winter. Once converted, in the 11th century, it came to mean ‘Jesus’ Birthday’.
Christmas was historically as important as any other Christian festival on the calendar, and it bared absolutely no importance in the UK until almost the nineteenth century.
Everything which we traditionally believe to make up Christmas were not invented until the 19th Century; this includes Christmas trees, Christmas cards, decorations, Christmas crackers, and more importantly Father Christmas or ‘Santa Claus’ with his now custom red suit and white beard.
In fact originally Father Christmas and Santa Claus were two different men. Father Christmas was English and wore green in representation of the return of spring. He was known to visit families and feast with them, not bring them all gifts. Santa Claus was actually Dutch and was based on a Christian bishop known as St Nicholas from Turkey, who gave gifts to the poor. In the 19th Century they merged with one another.
Wore green you say!? Yep Coca Cola turned Father Christmas red as part of an advertising campaign, hence the reason it’s always such a huge event when the traditional Coca Cola advert returns to our TV screens at Christmas time.
Also prior to the 19th Century people decorated their houses with ivy, mistletoe and holly and many other different parts. Once the 19th Century came people also started to use colourful paper decorations.
The first Christmas card was invented in 1843. Prior to this people would never have sent cards due to the cost of postage, but in 1840 the penny post was invented and by 1860 the sending of Christmas cards was common practice.
Christmas trees did make it to mainland England a bit earlier however at the turn of the 18th Century. They had been common used in mainland Europe since the 16th Century. By the 17th Century people began to put items such as tinsel and paper decorations on their trees. Christmas tree lights weren’t invented until 1882.
When it comes to mince pies the British have been eating these since the 16th Century. They were traditionally made of minced meat, but in the 19th Century this was substituted for dried fruit and spices.