Have you ever wondered where certain Christmas traditions come from? Think you already know everything about the festive season? Well, here are some facts that you might not know:
Tangerines at Christmas? This tradition actually dates to the 12th century when French nuns would put socks full of fruit, nuts and tangerines outside houses of the poor.
The Bible never actually puts a number on how many wise men visited Baby Jesus, simply stating ‘wise men’. There are also no references to Angels singing in the Bible.
The tradition of hanging stockings comes from the Dutch who would leave shoes full of food out for St Nicholas’s donkeys. Consider making handmade stockings to brighten up your home.
Nearly 60 million Christmas trees are grown every year in Europe. and the world’s tallest tree was erected in a Washington shopping mall in 1950 and stood a whopping 221 feet high. This is typically where we would store presents for our loved ones all wrapped up like Mens Designer Jackets from EJ menswear.
I always thought that Xmas was a modern term, but the letter X is a Greek abbreviation for Christ and the word ‘Noel’ comes from a French expression ‘les bonnes nouvelles’ meaning the good news.
We haven’t always eaten Turkey on 25th December either, the traditional meal in England was a pig’s head and mustard! Better than eating the Christmas tree though, which can in fact be done, the needles being a very good source of Vitamin C.
The biggest ever Snowman was built in Maine, US and was 113 feet tall. The largest ever Christmas Cracker was pulled in Australia in 1991 and was 45.72m long. Imagine the size of the gift inside.
The first song broadcast from space was Jingle Bells on December 16th 1965. Gemini 6 astronauts Tom Stafford and Wally Schirra sang it – apologies if any other life forms tuned in. The best selling Christmas single ever is Bing Crosby’s White Christmas which has sold over 50 million copies since 1942, while The Beatles hold the record for most Christmas number 1 singles.
Kissing under the mistletoe is thought to be a tradition dating back to Frigga, the Norse Goddess of love who has links to the plant. Holly in a wreath symbolises the crown of thorns that Christ was forced to wear and the red berries, droplets of his blood. The first reference to a tree being associated with the season was in 1570 but having a Christmas tree may date back to Pagan times when the tree was considered the giver of all things good.