British Christmas Traditions
The Christmas Tree
When Queen Victoria’s German husband, Prince Albert put up a Christmas Tree in Windsor Castle in 1848, the Christmas Tree became a tradition throughout England, the United States, and Canada.
Mince pies were originally filled with meat, such as lamb, rather than the dried fruit mix they are made with today, hence the name! Meat disappeared from the recipe by Victorian times.
Christmas stockings originate from the legend of St Nicholas, who was a gift giver. He once sent bags of gold down a chimney at the home of a poor man, which fell into stockings that were drying in the fireplace.
Tom Smith, a sweet maker in London, invented Christmas crackers in the late 1840’s which originally did not ‘crack’, it was only when he found a way to make them crack that they became very popular.
Similar to mince pies, Christmas pudding was originally filled with meat. They date back as early as the 14th century and in 1714, King George decided it should be a part of the typical Christmas meal.
The tradition of kissing below a mistletoe was first introduced by early Christians, a berry would be taken from the mistletoe with every kiss, until none remained.
Carols originated from pagan times and continued into the Christian era. Ever since then carols have been written, especially in Victorian times. In the more recent day, songs such as White Christmas by Bing Crosby and All I Want for Christmas Is You by Mariah Carey are modern day Christmas carols.
For everyone celebrating Christmas – we hope you have a wonderful one and a Happy New Year!