Saturday, December 24, 2011
Merry Christmas Everyone!
Christmas has come around again. Doesn’t it seem to happen so quickly when you are a grown up.. well adult. I am not so sure I have quite grown up yet ^_^
For Kids of course Christmas probably seems to take about four years to come round again.
JMB and I have put up messages wishing happy Christmas to all our visitors in past years, but we just don’t seem to have got to coordinate it this time round.
So if JMB posts one also then you are getting a two for the price of one deal. Way to go!
Christmas. Why is it when it is? Well it is literally the celebration of Christ’s Mass.
No I don’t mean his maybe 135 pounds of adult male mass, or maybe inertia. I mean a religious celebration of the Christ’s birth. The word comes to us from old English, via vulgar Latin from the Latin for “to dismiss”
Was it really Jesus’ birthday? I don’t think anyone can be absolutely sure of the day. But pagans the world over, especially in the colder northern places celebrated the winter solstice and the turn of the year where days started to get longer again promising the return of summer.
When those first missionaries were converting they were not going to tell them they had to give up a bright point in winter. Not if they didn’t want to get thrown out on their ear into the snow. No they figured they might as well put it to good use.
Like… Hey guys! No need to give up the traditional feast and fun, Jesus was born around this time anyway.. probably. You can celebrate that, just quit with the virgin sacrifices.
Not just rebirth, but the birth of the Christ and the gift of eternal life through him. Awesome deal guys n gals, get it while you can.
So why is it the 25th not the 21st? All to do with the old Julian calendar loosing time against the universe I guess, on account of leap years.
Our modern Christmas traditions owe a lot to Queen Victoria’s Husband, Prince Albert. They married in 1840 and he imported a lot of traditional Germanic ideas and bolted them on to the traditional English ones. He had quite an austere childhood from what I read and maybe he wanted to make the cosy family he never had as a kid. He made a new thing out of it all and everyone copied it.
The Christmas cards we send were invented by the same guy who invented the penny black postage stamp in 1843 and the modern postal service. Sir Henry Cole, he commissioned John Calcott to design a card mostly for his own use to save writing lots of Christmas letters. He sent his out and sold the rest of the print run in his art dealership It was a bit controversial because it pictured drinking a cup of good cheer… at the height of the temperance movement. They say no publicity is bad publicity and the cards sold like hot cakes. Now there are cards for all occasions.
Then along came Coca-Cola in the last century and took the not necessarily fat or jolly Father Christmas and Saint Clause from different European traditions and tuned that in the jolly tubby grandfatherly guy in a red suit. Santa A.K.A Father Christmas.
So I'll quote Charles Dickens' Tim Cratchett "God bless us... every one" and wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a happy, prosperous and healthy new year, from JMB and Moggsy x
"I will honour Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year." Charles Dickens