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Christmas Central - Holiday Trivia Tidbits

The Legend of the Poinsettia 

In a small Mexican village, it was a custom to place gifts for the Christ Child in front of the church manger on Christmas Eve. One Christmas, a young boy, having nothing to give, knelt outside in the snow to pray. In the spot where he knelt, legend says, a beautiful plant with scarlet leaves miraculously grew, and the boy presented the poinsettia as his gift.

Boxing Day

Boxing day is celebrated in England, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. It was originated by the rich and powerful of old England where their workers would go for the holiday. The day after Christmas, the Masters and Mistresses of the castle would give to their employees their clothes, shoes, tools and food for the year. These would be packaged in boxes. As England changed, it was then the servants of the castles that would bring a box to their Masters to be filled with coins instead of clothes or tools. 

The Candy Cane

In Europe, they decorated their Christmas trees with white sugar candy sticks. A church official bent the ends to make it look like a shepherd's crook. They were passed out at the services to children to keep them content during the services. It wasn't until the 1900s that we put the stripes in the candy canes as we know them today.

The Pickle Tradition

In old world Germany, the pickle ornament was the last ornament that parents hung on the tree on Christmas Eve. In the morning, the first child to find the pickle, received an extra gift to open.

The Christmas Tree

In the 11th century, people decorated trees with red apples to symbolize the tree of Paradise. In the 15th century, people put the trees in their houses on December 24th, which was believed to be the feast day of Adam and Eve. Prince Albert set a Christmas tree up in 1841 and was so popular everyone began putting up their own trees. They were decorated with homemade items such as candy and cookies and garlands.

How to Say Merry Christmas Around the World!
  • African: Rehus-Beal-Ledeats
  • Arabic: Idah Saidan Wa Sanah Jadidah
  • Bohemian: Vesele Vanoce
  • Brazilian: Boas Festas e Feliz Ano Novo
  • Bulgarian: Tchestita Koleda
  • Chinese: (Cantonese) Gun Tso Sun Tan'Gung Haw Sun
  • Cornish: Nadelik looan na looan blethen noweth
  • Dutch: Zalig Kerstfeast
  • Finnish: hyvaa Joulua
  • French: Joyeux Noel
  • Greek: Kala Christouyenna
  • Hawaiian: Mele Kalikimaka
  • Hebrew: Mo'adim Lesimkha. Chena tova
  • Hungarian: Kellemes Karacsonyi unnepeket
  • Icelandic: Gledileg Jol
  • Irish: Nollaig Shona Dhuit
  • Italian: Buone Feste Natalizie
  • Japanese: Meri-Kurisumasu
  • Korean: Sung Tan Chuk Ha
  • Latin: Natale hilare et Annun Faustum
  • Lithuanian: Linksmu Kaledu
  • Navajo: Mery Keshmish
  • Norwegian: God Jul
  • Philippine: Malagayn Pasko
  • Polish: Wesolych Swiat Bozego Nardozenia
  • Portuguese: Feliz Natal
  • Romanian: Sarbatori Vesele
  • Russian: Pozdrevlyayu s Prazdnikom Rozhdestva is Novim Godom
  • Spanish: Feliz Navidad
  • Swedish: God Jul and (och) Ett Gott Nytt Ar
  • Ukrainian: Srozhdestvom Kristovym
  • Welsh: Nadolig Llawen
  • Yugoslavian: Cestitamo Bozic

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