Did you know? - Fascinating facts and useful trivia factoids about people, products and places

All about Christmas

Father XmasThe word “Christmas” means “Mass of Christ,” later shortened to “Christ-Mass.” The even shorter form “Xmas” – first used in Europe in the 1500s – is derived from the Greek alphabet, in which X is the first letter of Christ’s name: Xristos, therefore “X-Mass.”

Today we know that Christ was not born on the 25th of December. The date was chosen to coincide with the pagan Roman celebrations honouring Saturnus (the harvest god) and Mithras (the ancient god of light), a form of sun worship. These celebrations came on or just after the winter solstice, the shortest day of the year in the northern hemisphere, to announce that winter is not forever, that life continues, and an invitation to stay in good spirit.

But there’s much more to the fascinating history of Christmas! Where did the Christmas tree originate, why are Christmas candles important, etc.? The answers are all here.
Ho-Ho-Ho – just click and go.

The history of Christmas
It became popular only fairly recently.

The origin of Christmas celebrations.

Jesus Christ
When was He really born?

Father Christmas
Who is the real Santa Claus?

Christmas trees
They were hung upside down in the Middle Ages!

Christmas carols
How many versions of Silent Night did you say there are?

Christmas cards
They’re quite nice: whose idea was it?

Christmas stamps
Look a lot like little Christmas cards.

Christmas crackers
You just have to have some.

Christmas pudding
It won’t be Christmas without the pudding.

The Reindeer
How do they fly, and what speed do they reach?

The elves
They invented the magic toymaking machine.

Christmas gifts
It ain’t just for kids, is it?

The gift givers
All kinds of gifts, all kinds of givers.

The mistletoe
What really happens when you kiss under the mistletoe?

“Boxing Day?”
Why is it called that?

Other festivals over the Christmas season

Merry Christmas” in different languages

Photo calendar
Design your own photo calendar free
– many beautiful Christmas designs to choose from

Christmas candy

The Christmas candy cane, shaped as a shepherds’ crook, represents the humble shepherds who were first to worship the new-born Christ.

Legend has it that the candy cane was invented in 1670 by a choirmaster at the Cologne Cathedral who handed out the bent sugar sticks among children to keep them quiet during the long Living Crèche ceremony.

AD is short for Anno Domini, or “Year of our Lord,” as proclaimed by the Roman Catholic Church. Some non-Christians prefer the alternative designation “CE” for “Common Era.”

Have Santa write to your child today. Highly personal…Truly Magical