By: Matthew Vibbert
Do you know anything about the history of Christmas? The Squire spent some time looking into some of the traditional elements of Christmas. As we all know, Christmas is a religious holiday and is celebrated around the world. It has been celebrated since the birth of Jesus. However, there may be some details about the origins of the holiday with which our readers are not familiar. Thanks to the History Channel, The Squire is here to give you all the details you need to be a Christmas history expert.
People in Germany honored the god Oden in the mid-winter. In places such as Europe, the mid-winter time was perfect since most of the cattle were already dead so they didn’t need to feed them during this time. During earlier years of Christianity, Easter was the widely celebrated holiday before the birth of Jesus.
Originally, Christmas wasn’t celebrated at all. The celebration of Christmas was widely spread, but many still considered Easter and Epiphany as more important holidays. Christmas wasn’t a federal holiday up until 1870 which it was then celebrated in every country.
Christmas was originally celebrated as the birth of Jesus, but there is no evidence that Jesus was actually born on December 25. It is thought of that churches chose December 25 to try and adopt and absorb the tradition of Saturnalia, which is a month where slaves would become masters and peasants would run the cities and schools and other businesses were closed so that anybody was able to enjoy the month as well. Also, during this time, food and drinks were plentiful for the full month. This was something that was celebrated throughout Rome.
Once, while Oliver Cromwell took the throne in Europe, he had cancelled Christmas. People of England had wanted Charles II back in the throne which, by popular demand, had happened. Once he had regained his throne, Christmas, was once again, a holiday in England. Christmas has actually been cancelled before in America as well. From 1659 to 1681 Christmas had actually been outlawed in Boston. Captain John Smith had reported, after the incident of Christmas being outlawed, that Christmas was enjoyed by all people and was passed shortly after.
Through the years, the American culture of Christmas had adapted other cultures as well such as, decorating the tree, sending Christmas cards, and giving gifts. Most people had adapted into the new, re-invented Christmas, and the holiday was meant to grow the nation. For more information about Christmas’ past go to www.history.com.