Christmas Trivia Questions And Facts

Which country first gave us tinsel? Answer: Germany

Tinsel first began appearing on Christmas trees in Germany around the year 1610. The first tinsel was made of real silver. Unfortunately, this was not only expensive but the tinsel would tarnish. Some claim that tinsel is tied to the legend of the Christmas spider. This legend claims that either Santa Claus or the Christ child upon discovering early in the morning that the tree was covered in webs did a bit of magic. They did not want the owner of the house to be upset by what the spiders had done so they transformed the tinsel into gold and silver.

Which British monarch started the tradition of the Christmas Day broadcast? Answer: George V

The first broadcast was in 1932. The message was not only aired in Britain but was transmitted to Kenya, Australia, India and Canada as well. The first speech opened with the line, "I speak now from my home and from my heart to you all" and was written by the King's close friend, Rudyard Kipling. During the Second World War the speech continued to be aired and gained in popularity as it served not only as a morale booster to the country, but also helped to reinforce the war efforts. The Queen has continued this tradition and the broadcast is now available on radio, television and the internet.

Which of these items is often hidden on a Christmas tree? Answer: A pickle

The origins of the "German Pickle Tradition" are sketchy. It is often thought of as a German tradition, but when asked, most German's have never even heard of it. According to many, this custom began in the United States by a family right after the Civil War. The custom involves a pickle (ornament shaped like a pickle) that is hidden somewhere on the Christmas tree on Christmas Eve. Christmas morning everyone is supposed to hunt for the hidden pickle. The child who finds the pickle gets an extra gift, whereas, an adult who finds the pickle will have good luck in the New Year.

Which city gifts Britain with a Christmas tree every year? Answer: Oslo

This custom began in 1947, following the end of the Second World War to escape the German occupation during WWII, many Norwegians including members of the government and the royal family took refuge in Britain. After the war, as a token of thanks and friendship, they donated a huge Christmas tree and they have continued this tradition every year since. The tree is decorated with white lights and a star and is usually located in Westminster. Part of the yearly gift-giving celebration involves the mayor of Oslo traveling to Westminster to deliver the tree and attend the tree lighting ceremony.

Which Christmas decoration will also protect you from evil spirits? Answer: Holly

The holly has long been associated with Christmas celebrations. The tradition of hanging holly is like many other Christmas rituals, mixed up between old Celtic customs, early Christian beliefs and pagan winter rituals. One old Christian belief claims that holly grew in the places where Jesus put his feet on his way to the cross. It is also said to represent the crown of thorns that was placed on his head, and the berries are symbolic of the blood that he shed.

The Celtics believed that holly would protect a person's home not only from evil spirits but also from lightening and witches. The druids claimed that holly would offer shelter to elves and fairies that came into people's homes during Yule. Whichever tradition or custom may or may not be true, it is certain that holly is one of the few plants that bear a bright red fruit during the long winter months, which makes for a beautiful decoration.
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