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How did the tradition of the Christmas tree start?

Have you ever thought of why we even bother to put up a christmas tree for christmas? well, thats what im wondering, so help me ! its for a school essay!

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2 Responses to “How did the tradition of the Christmas tree start?”

  1. FairyF said :

    the origin of the Christmas tree isn’t exactly clear, but it’s probably rooted in ancient times, and probably connected to religious rituals. Many ancient cultures revered evergreen trees, which stayed green in the winter while other trees were bare. The evergreens served as a reminder that winter would pass, and the land would once again be fruitful.

    As far back as ancient Rome, evergreens were used as a part of the Saturnalia festival-the New Year celebration. Romans exchanged branches and twigs of evergreens as a good-luck blessing.

    Many historians believe that pagans of Scandinavia were the first people to bring actual trees indoors-a mid-winter symbol of the promise of the coming warmth of spring.

    The German Saxons may have been the first to light their trees with candles, and to adorn them with decorations-trinkets of good fortune. The tradition of the indoor evergreen was so strong in Germany, it’s believed that the first use of Christmas trees by Christians developed there, with some experts placing its origin as far back as the eighth century.

    The first recorded Christmas tree in England was in 1841, when Queen Victoria’s husband, German-born Prince Albert, set up a tree in Windsor Castle. In America, German immigrants were using Christmas trees as far back as the 1830’s. The custom took several decades to catch on in the U.S., as most people correctly assumed its pagan origins, but by the 1890’s the indoor decorated Christmas tree was a staple in most American homes.

    Today we tend to decorate our trees with ornaments which have significant meaning to our lives. Early ornaments, particularly in Europe, included even food-delicacies intended to satisfy the spirits of good luck.

    As far as your child is concerned, of course, your Christmas tree has a completely different purpose. It’s a landmark-if you had no tree, where would Santa leave all his gifts?

  2. greenshootuk said :

    The tradition of the Christmas Tree started in Europe and is first recorded in the 16th century, well into the Christian era. There is no evidence at all of any connection to paganism.

    The first Christmas trees were put up on Christmas Eve and were decorated with fruit and nuts (now replaced by glass baubles and candy). Christmas Eve used to be counted as the Feast of Adam and Eve. The connection is obvious – the Christmas tree represents the tree in the Garden of Eden.

    The birth of Christ, the second Adam, transforms the tree from a symbol of our fall to a symbol of our redemption.


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