[Christine O’Keeffe’s Christmas Customs]
Xmas - History - Legends - St. Nick - 12th Night - Carols - Games - Rings - E-Cards

British Isles Customs:   Evergreen wreaths are placed on the front door. A Christmas Yule log is brought in & children hang stockings over the hearth fire. Father Christmas brings gifts & they are placed under the Christmas Tree decorated with ribbons, cards, candles, & tiny satin wrapped presents. Victorian illustrators show him as either a pagan figure with icicles or ivy around his head or a saint. He fills the stockings with small gifts, food, apples, Sevilla oranges, & nuts. Christmas crackers, foil wrapped party favors with treats, are very popular. (4)

Ta’n Billey Ollick cheet veih Germany.
Mysh hoght bleeaney roish ren Ben Rein Victoria cheet hug stoyl reeoil,
er yn nuyoo laa as feed jeh’n vee meanagh jeh’n gheurey ayns y vlein hoght cheead yeig as nuy as feed,
v’eh ayns pash as currit er yn voayrd lesh 3 straneyn dy chainleyn kere shellan, cullyrit, as v’eh coodit lesh jesheenyn.
Cha nel ny cliaghtaghyn shoh Manninagh. (17)

The Christmas Tree comes from Germany.
About 8 years before Queen Victoria came to the throne,
on the new day twenty-ninth of the middle month of winter in the year eighteen hundred twenty-nine 1829,
it was in a pot, & placed on the table with 3 rows of wax candles, colored, & it was covered with toys .
These customs are not Manx. (17)

Caroling: On Christmas Eve people go caroling. A Carol: love song is sung to a harp or sometimes a violin. In Welsh this is called eisteddfodau: session. (4)

Divining: If a spinster on Christmas Eve pours melted lead into cold water, it will turn into the shape of the tools her future husband will use. A doctor will be represented by a lancet, a writer by a quill, a surveyor by a chain, a mason by a mallet, and so on. – Emma Mary Thomas

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