"....It’s very largely thanks to Charles Dickens and his England that,
despite the historical origins of Christmas — probably in the spring and
certainly in a Mediterranean climate — modern Americans tend to celebrate
Jesus Christ’s Nativity as an idealized early Victorian mid-winter family
feast...."______________________________December 25 as the
date for celebrating the birth of Jesus goes back to the 4th century, 1500 years
before Dickens creations of popular Christmas images.There is no
historical evidence nor even ancient traditions I'm aware of that suggest
what season of the year the birth of Jesus occurred.
Loved the article. Our holiday as celebrated today owes also something to other
non Anglo cultures as well. The Dutch settled in droves in the Northeastern US
from the 1600's to the 1800's and brought traditions of gifts for
children from Sinterklaas (the name origin of Santa Claus) and many other
traditions influencing celebrations and decorations in use today. The most
influential early stories of Christmas were written by Dutch influenced New York
area authors e.g. Clement Moore (Visit from St. Nicholas) and Washington Irving.
Add the Christmas Tree from German immigrants populating the Midwest
who brought also their Christmas Carols (e.g. "O Come All Ye Faithful",
"O Christmas Tree", and from Austria "Still, Still Still" and
the king of all carols - Silent Night, coming from a small village on the
border with Germany. Add the French carols of "Angels We Have Heard on
High" and "O Holy Night" and many others - most of our Christmas
music and tradition of singing at Christmas come from outside the US. Also the
idea of Advent and anticipation started long before "Only 30 shopping days
before Christmas". ...So many great traditions and surprising
and poignant ways of celebrating the Savior's birth.
I expect Dickens knew about Christmas in his own day and portrayed it well.
There seems to have been quite an emphasis on the reason for the season and the
singing of carols by children, and by seamen and coal miners as I recall, the
short story suggesting that the "religious" aspect was fairly
prominent.The jollity seemed to focus on a national holiday, a day
off with pay, a special Christmas dinner - with "good will to all men"
expressed in the toasts (including a good-natured toast to Scrooge), in party
games, dancing and even budding romance. There was clearly some emphasis given
to charitable giving, acts of kindness and benevolence; an abundance of the
spirit of Christ.It would seem likely that this was the case
throughout the Anglosphere and beyond, for details of which we can consult
living ancestors and old journals and magazines etc.Merry Christmas
and God bless us, every one!
First. I consider myself an active member of the LDS church. Next, while I
understand why many in the church believe that Christ was born in the Spring, a
couple of points show how this "could" be wrong.1st 3 Nephi
1:1-12 clearly states that Christ was born 600 not 599 or 601 years after Lehi
left Jerusalem. 2nd, 3 Nephi 8:2 says that the sign of Christ death
occurred exactly 33 years and 4 days after the sign was given of Christ's
birth.3rd, Luke states that Jesus was born in a stable because there
was no room at the inn due to the census and not the Passover4th.
King Zedekiah became King in 597/598 BC5th. Hared the Great died in
4 BC, Christ was born before he diedUnless the Bible is wrong about
Hared the Great killing the babies in Bethlehem and the astronomical signs
recorded in Babylon regarding King Zedekiah's coronation, or the Book of
Mormon wrong about the 600 years, a BOM year cannot be the same length as our
year. However Egyptians and Mayans had a 360 calendar that works
for exactly 600 years, which when added to Christ's death pinpoints a late