why do we have a xmas tree
When you think of Christmas, one of the first images to spring to mind is probably a Christmas tree, covered in twinkly decorations, lights and tinsel. But where did the tradition of having a fir tree in our house and decorating it like this come from? Many people think the tradition of Christmas trees in Britain started with the Victorians. This refers to the time when Queen Victoria was on the throne, from 1837 until 1901. Queen Victoria and her husband Prince Albert were known to be very big fans of Christmas! However, the tradition actually dates back further than that. It originally came from Germany, where Prince Albert was actually born, and was introduced to England during the Georgian period, when King George III was on the throne. He had a German wife called Charlotte, who it is thought used to decorate a tree for her family in the 1790s. But Queen Victoria and Prince Albert are said to be the ones who made it extremely popular and fashionable to decorate a tree at Christmas like this, which is why a lot of people think that they started the tradition in Britain. At first, people used to put their trees on tables, as they were smaller. But when it became possible to get bigger trees from Norway, people began to put their trees on the floor, with presents underneath. The reason that fir trees are traditionally used is because they are evergreen, which means they are still bright green with lots of leaves - even during the winter.
Traditional Christmas trees are evergreens, which means they keep their bright, green leaves in the winter, unlike other trees
Ever since 1947, Norway has donated a tree to London to say thank you for helping them during World War II. A special ceremony is held in Norway in November, when the tree is cut down in the forest in Norway. Then, it comes over to the UK by sea, before being driven to London on a big lorry. The Mayor of Oslo Marianne Borgen and the Lord Mayor of Westminster Steve Summers cut down 2016's Trafalgar Square Christmas tree in Oslo, Norway It is then put up in Trafalgar Square in London using a special crane. It is decorated in the traditional Norwegian way, with strings of lights going down the tree, rather than criss-crossing it. Why we have Christmas trees in our homes is not a question many ask Б itБs one of the most magical Christmas traditions there is and it happens because thatБs what you do. But when you think about it, for one month of the year, you have a tree in your living room, hallway, dining room or wherever else you choose to deck the halls. ItБs not like a bunch of peonies Б itБs a tree and itБs in a pot inside your home. So why DO we have Christmas trees in our homes at Christmas? The act of putting up a Christmas tree can be traced back to the 1500s in eastern Europe.
The first recorded tree put up for Christmas was in 1510 in Latvia and 1521 in Slovakia, according to the Christianity Today website. However, the tradition of putting trees in homes during wintertime Б and not just Christmas Б goes back even further to the Pagan times. Using theб green leaves of an evergreen tree to decorate homes during wintertime started as aб Pagan tradition, designed as a symbol of life amid the dark, cold winter nights. The traditionб dates back to the Roman times Б with them doing so usually around their New Year celebrations. б People in northern Europe did something similar although many placed the branches in boxes for the entirety of winter. Early Christians were pretty reluctant in adopting the idea, with one prominent Christian from the second century, Tertullian, beingб quoted as saying: БLet them over whom the fires of hell are imminent, affix to their posts, laurels doomed presently to burn: to them the testimonies of darkness and the omens of their penalties are suitable. You are a light of the world, and a tree ever green. If you have renounced temples, make not your own gate a temple. Б This stance softenedб after missionaries spread aб legend saying that every tree miraculously threwб off ice and snow when Christ was born to reveal green branches, according to the Christianity Today website.
Why do we decorate trees? It wasnБt until the 1500s that these evergreen trees started being associated with Christmas. The jump from being a wintertime decoration to a symbol of Christmas is believed to have come from trees being decorated in biblical and nativity plays. The plays got rowdier and rowdier and many were banned in the 16th century, leading to people starting to decorate their homes instead Б with a Christmas treeб taking pride of place. The tradition grew from there and eventually churches started putting decorated Christmas trees up as well. What about Christmas tree lights? When churches began putting up Christmas trees, they would often go up next to shelves stacked with candles. These candles were soon used to decorate the tree, which later evolved into putting up Christmas lights and ornaments. When should you put up a Christmas б tree? Christmas trees vary widely these days Б with some opting for real Norwegian spruces and others opting for fake plastic ones that can be pulled out of the attic each year. The Romans are said to have waited until after noon on Christmas Eve to putб up a tree, but these days most either put a tree up on December 1б or the second Saturday in December. If you havenБt got yours up yet, why not make some mulled wine and dust off the decs this weekend? MORE: MORE:
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