• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

What is Christmas?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Christmas What is Christmas As the year draws to an end, the holiday spirit is in the air (quite literally we are waiting for the actual 'holiday' to start) Well, jokes aside Christmas is surely just around the corner and the spirit of Christmas is once again present among us. But what is this 'Spirit of Christmas'? In fact what is Christmas? When a person thinks of Christmas, the first thing that most probably comes to mind is the Christmas tree or Santa Claus or even presents. Christmas can be described in many ways but it is usually celebrated by millions of people according to tradition. Tradition dictates to put up a Christmas tree, decorate the house for 'Santa Claus to come and visit' exchange gifts with one another and the list goes on. There are other ancient traditions that have become part of many families around the world. But have you ever wondered how these traditions started? The tradition of the Christmas tree has certainly come a long way dating back to the ancient Egyptians who were part of a long line of cultures that treasured and worshipped evergreens. ...read more.

Middle

When he got home, he set up a little fir tree indoors so he could share the story with his children. He decorated it with candles, which he lighted in honour of Christ's birth. The tradition of the mistletoe is derived from the pagan worship of the sun god, Balder. He was supposed to be immune to all forms of destruction because of spells cast by the other gods. The only thing they lacked was the immunity to mistletoe. And so Loki, the evil god contrived to have Balder killed in an arrow made of mistletoe. After the other gods brought Balder back to life, the mistletoe promised never to hurt anyone again. It became the symbol of love. Perhaps of this legend or perhaps for other reasons it was worshipped by the Druids. Their belief was that if a man held it over a woman's head, she would be powerless to resist him. From this comes our custom of hanging it over doorways and the tradition that if a girl is caught under the spring of mistletoe she may be kissed and may not resist. ...read more.

Conclusion

It was not until relatively recent times that our present day Santa Claus developed as we know him. In 1822 an American minister named Clement C. Moore first described Santa (complete with fur trimmed suit and his reindeer powered sleigh) for his children in a poem called 'A Visit from St. Nicholas.' In 1823, at the bidding of friends, Moore published his poem calling it 'The Night before Christmas,' in the New York Sentinel. This well loved poem is the foundation of our present day Santa Claus. We must keep one thing in mind. All of the folk legend and practices have sufficiently taken Christ out of Christmas. Christmas is a time of celebration which is why we partake so many traditions that help create the wonderful atmosphere, but we should not forget the true purpose of Christmas. On December 25th the entire Christian world comes together putting aside petty quarrels and minor differences to commemorate the birth of Jesus. It is a joyous occasion when families and friends are gathered together exchanging presents and love. Be it with family or be it with friends, let us all have a truly MERRY CHRISTMAS and a HAPPY NEW YEAR. Edison John ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Christmas section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Christmas essays

  1. 'Describe and explain how Advent and Christmas are celebrated by one Christian denomination'.

    For Catholics in particular, it is a time of penance, and the Sacrament of Reconciliation is an important event for them at this time.

  2. Symbolism of the Christmas Tree in Henrik Ibsen's "A Doll's House".

    object of beauty, nor centre of attraction and hence had been put somewhere else in the room, or even removed.

  1. Traditions and holidays of Great Britain

    It was horizontally rectangular in shape, printed on stout cardboard by lithography. A traditional feature of Christmas in Britain is the Christmas tree. Queen Victoria's husband, Prince Albert, brought the German tradition (he was German) to Britain. He and the Queen had a Christmas tree at Windsor Castle in 1841.

  2. Examine how different writers present the theme of Christmas

    Other themes the poems have in common are prejudgement and misconceptions. In "Ballad of the Bread Man" this is shown because the people judge Mary and Jesus even before he is born "That girls been up to no good" and from the title we misconceive what the whole poem is about.

  1. Jesus and Martin Luther King

    This is called advent. It is the time celebrated that Jesus entered the world. Originally Christians would use and advent wreath for counting down. An advent wreath has four candles, which are lit one by one on each of the four Sundays before Christmas.

  2. Customer Service for the Senior citizens Christmas party

    We had to get him some fruit for dessert instead of him having Christmas pudding and because I lived the closest to the venue I had to run home and get some apples for the man. Shani and Pam dishing up dessert Coffee and mince pies After the dessert dishes

  1. The Christmas That Stopped the War

    Jim Prince: Well we always knew that these men were having the same problems as us. Such as the cold, rationing, and our trenches collapsing. It however became different when we met them...when you find out one of them had been working as a waiter at a restaurant you have been to.

  2. The Story of Christmas and the Christ Child

    People of different countries celebrate the holiday in various ways, depending on national and local customs. In Britain, Canada, Ireland, and the United States. Many Christmas customs are common to people living in Britain, Canada, Ireland, and the United States.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work