History of Christmas

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Christmas is a worldwide cultural and sacred religious holiday. It is celebrated on the 25th of December. Looking at the history of Christmas, people around the world have partaken in it for two millennia with practices and traditions that are secular and religious. Christians celebrate Christmas Day as the anniversary of the Birth of Jesus Christ (also known as Jesus of Nazareth), a spiritual leader whose teachings are the cornerstone of their faith.

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history of christmas

The history of Christmas consists of popular customs like decorating Christmas trees, waiting for Santa Claus to arrive, exchanging gifts, and, of course, sharing meals with friends and family. Christmas has been a public holiday in many of the world’s nations. It is celebrated by a majority of Christians religiously and by many non-Christians culturally and forms an important part of the holiday season centered around it.

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One of the things looked at in the history of Christmas is that, although the date and month of the birth of Jesus are uncertain, the church in the early fourth century set the date as the 25th of December. This coincides with the date on the Roman calendar of the winter solstice. In the Gregorian calendar, which has been adopted almost uniformly in the civil calendars used in countries throughout the world, most Christians celebrate Christmas on the 25th of December.

Some of the Eastern Christian Churches, however, celebrate Christmas on the 25th of December in the older Julian calendar, which is actually the 7th of January in the Gregorian calendar. For Christians, the primary aim of celebrating Christmas is to assume that God came into the world in the form of man to atone for humanity’s sins, rather than knowing Jesus’ exact date of birth.

Numerous Church Fathers offered sarcastic comments on the pagan custom of celebrating birthdays. When from the perspective of the church, martyrs and saints should actually be honoured on the days of their martyrdom, which is, their real “birthdays. Also, it is uncertain the exact root of assigning the 25th of December as Jesus’ birth date. In this respect, the New Testament gives no clues.

According to the history of Christmas, the 25th of December was first identified by Sextus Julius Africanus in 221 as the date of the birth of Jesus and later became the widely accepted date. One widespread explanation of the history of Christmas is that the Christianization of (the birthday of the unconquered sun) was on the 25th of December.

Dies Natalis Solis Invicti (the birthday of the unconquered sun) is a popular holiday in the Roman Empire. It is the holiday that celebrated the winter solstice as a symbol of the sun’s resurgence, the heralding of the rebirth of spring and summer, and the casting away of winter. Indeed after the 25th of December had become commonly accepted as the date of the birth of Jesus, the connection between the birth of the Son and the rebirth of the sun was also made by Christian writers frequently.

Christmas party

The priority reasoning identified the spring equinox as the birthday of the universe and the fourth day of creation, when the light was created, as the day of Jesus’ conception (for example, the 25th of March). Nine months later (the 25th of December), then became the day of Jesus’s birth. The anniversary of the birth of Jesus, observed on the 6th of January, has been celebrated in conjunction with his baptism for a long time.

In the 9th century, Christmas started to be commonly celebrated with a specific liturgy. Still, it did not gain the liturgical importance of either Easter or Good Friday, the other two main Christian holidays. At midnight, Roman Catholic churches celebrate the first Christmas Mass, and Christmas candlelight services are progressively performed by Protestant churches late on the evening of the 24th of December.

Source (s)

Christmas – britannica

History of Christmas – history

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