Yes , perhaps too wide rangingAnthony Campanella wrote:Thats a wide ranging topic Tonyyyyy!
I think the winter solstice has been celebrated prehistory
Many societies were forced to shelter "In the Bleak Mid Winter"
What better way to start the winter than singing, dancing, feasting on the recent harvest?
The green coated Father Christmas is interesting and new to me. It suggests a very different origin than the Dutch Sinta Klaas/ St Nikolaasmanythumbed wrote:Wassailing would be one UK tradition that is pretty much moribund, carol singing is similar but doesn't have the same element of mischief that some wassailing activity would have had.
Also we have a red coated father christmas instead of the traditional green coated figure - apparently due to Coca Cola.
Thanks Simonsimonm wrote:The whole modern Xmas thing is largely an invention of the marketing men with the Red and White santa being Coca Colas 1930's contribution.
I have a vague memory that there was a nasty companion to St Nicolas (6th Dec) … In Germany people often get some sort of token present on the 6th Dec. Where does "Old Nick" come from in English if it is not somehow the evil side of this figure. I don't know but it could be worth following up.Tonyyyyy wrote: Knecht Ruprecht and Zwarte Piet are interesting - I dont know that the Anglophone Santa had any sinister companions ….
Is this due to the discrepancy between the Julian and Gregorian Calendars?simonm wrote: ...the 6th of January was the more important festival. Even today in Spain, the 6th is a major festival.
Well a carol was a dance originallyAlan Green wrote:It's not just Christmas; Christianity hijacked Halloween too - 1st November is "All Saints"
It's a massive subject and difficult to know where to start - the Wassailing ritual still takes place in some villages, and the Oxford Book of Carols has Carols for Christmas, Easter, Whitsun, summer and harvest (a Carol has a short repeated refrain at the end of each verse, take "Hark the herald angels sing" as the best-known example).
I doubt it. In English the 6th of Jan used to be called "Little Xmas" and the "12 days of Xmas" is the time from "Xmas" to the 6th as far as I understand it. Pre-20th Century "Little Xmas" was important in the British Isles too.Tonyyyyy wrote:Is this due to the discrepancy between the Julian and Gregorian Calendars?simonm wrote: ...the 6th of January was the more important festival. Even today in Spain, the 6th is a major festival.