Do you know what the story of the typical Christmas elements is?
🎄The Christmas tree. The custom of decorating fir trees originates from Celtic culture. Due to their characteristic of being always green they were considered the symbol of eternal life. The first Christmas tree, however, had a completely different meaning. It was erected in Tallin, in 1441, in the center of the town hall. Under this tree men and women danced in search of their soul mate. Initially considered only a Protestant tradition, it was Queen Margherita, in the second half of the 1800s, who decorated the first Christmas tree in Italy. It was erected at the Quirinale and from that moment fashion spread throughout the peninsula.
Christmas balls. Many may not know that originally, instead of balls, Christmas trees were decorated with red apples. This custom was born when, to represent the “original sin” of Adam and Eve, apples were hung as a symbol of evil. The fall of the apples coincided with the birth of Jesus, represented by the tree. Not all countries could hang apples from trees, so they were first replaced with glass balls, then plastic.
The garland. In the classical age it was the symbol of infinity and victory. It was delivered to the emperors and soldiers who had distinguished themselves in war, as a sign of eternal glory. Centuries later it was revived by Christians. The holly wreath represented that of Jesus and the berries within it, his blood and suffering. Strange for its history, the United States was the first to use it as a Christmas decoration, before its spread all over the world.
Gifts. The custom of exchanging gifts was already widespread in ancient Rome. Every January 1st, the Romans donated consecrated branches as a wish for prosperity and abundance for the new year. The Christian custom of exchanging gifts at Christmas derives from the gifts that the Magi brought to the child Jesus. 🎁
The first to separate the religious part from the consumerist one were the Dutch colonists in North America, introducing the figure of St. Nicholas (Santa Claus), or Santa Claus. 🎅