Sunday, December 2, 2012

Posted by Daniexmachina

Today I learned about Father Christmas and the English traditions for Christmastime. I decided in honor of the holiday season, to learn about how people in other countries enjoy their Christmas and how their Santa Claus works. So get out your holly and grab a nice warm cup of cocoa, it is time to learn! The English version of Santa Claus is called Father Christmas. Unlike the Santa we know, Father Christmas is portrayed in green robes. In fact, Charles Dickens used Father Christmas as inspiration for the Ghost of Christmas Present, so picture that gigantic guy sized down to normal and you have him. He also wears holly in his hair. These days, aside from the visual differences, our Santa and Father Christmas have much in common. But when Father Christmas started out, he wasn't a gift-giver. He was simply the spirit of Christmas and bringer of good tidings. Somewhere along the way this myth merged with our Santa and now Father Christmas is the gift-giver to English children. Father Christmas also isn't from the North Pole like our Santa, most legend says he's from Greenland. 

The cool thing is we got many of our Christmas traditions from English practices. For instance, we hang stockings because of part of the Father Christmas myth saying he accidentally dropped coins in stockings drying on the fireplace when he was on his way up. Christmas trees also started in England. When Queen Victoria and Prince Albert reigned, they brought a tree into the Palace because Prince Albert was from the country and he missed their tradition of decorating with trees from outside. 


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