The history of the Christmas tree: from the 15th century Estonia to the homes of the whole world


The history of the Christmas tree: from the 15th century Estonia to the homes of the whole world„ The Christmas tree is, with the tradition of the nativity scene, one of the most common Christmas customs. It is usually a fir tree decorated with small colored objects, lights, festoons, sweets, small packaged gifts and much more, all depending on the personal tastes of each. This can be brought indoors or kept outdoors, and is prepared a few days or weeks before Christmas (often on the day of the Immaculate Conception of December 8 ) and removed after the Epiphany. Especially if the tree is placed in the house, it is the tradition that at his feet are placed the Christmas gifts packed, waiting for the day of the party in which they can be opened. In the Milanese tradition, the Christmas tree is prepared, however, at Sant’Ambrogio, patron saint of Milan, on 7 December; while in the Bari tradition it is set up in San Nicola, patron saint of Bari, on 6 December. The image of the tree as a symbol of life has very ancient origins and finds evidence in different religions.

The modern use of the tree, however, was founded according to some in Tallinn, in Estonia in 1441, when a large fir was erected in the Town Hall Square, Raekoja Plats, around which young bachelors, men, and women, danced together in search of the soul mate. Tradition then has taken from Germany in the sixteenth century. Ingeborg Weber-Kellermann (professor of ethnology in Marburg) identified, among the first historical references to tradition, a chronicle of Bremen in 1570, according to which a tree was decorated with apples, walnuts, dates and paper flowers and top 5 christmas songs ever. The city of Riga is among those then proclaimed seats of the first Christmas tree in history (there is a plaque written in eight languages, according to which the “first New Year tree” was decorated in the city in 1510). Prior to this first “official” appearance of the Christmas tree, one can also find a medieval religious game celebrated in Germany on December 24th, the “game of Adam and Eve” (Adam und Eva Spiele), in which they were filled the squares and churches of fruit trees and symbols of abundance to recreate the image of Paradise. Later the fruit trees were replaced by firs because the latter had a profound “magical” value for the people. They especially had the gift of being evergreens, a gift which according to tradition was given to him by Jesus himself as thanks for having protected him while being pursued by enemies. Not by chance, also in Germany, the fir-tree was also the place where the children brought by the stork were placed. The custom, originally intended as linked to public life, entered the houses in the seventeenth century and at the beginning of the next century was already common practice in all Rhineland cities. The use of candles to decorate the branches of the tree is already attested in the eighteenth century.

For a long time, the tradition of the Christmas tree remained typical of the regions to the north of the Rhine, while it was less widespread in the more southern Germanic regions, where Catholics considered it a Protestant use. It was the Prussian officers, after the Vienna Congress, who contributed to its diffusion in the following years. In Vienna, the Christmas tree appeared in 1816, at the behest of Princess Henrietta von Nassau-Weilburg, and in France in 1840, introduced by the Duchess of Orléans. In the early years of the century, in Switzerland and Germany, Christmas trees began to be produced and traded, which became part of consumerism. A decisive contribution to its diffusion also came from Great Britain in the mid-nineteenth century, in fact, Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, husband of Queen Victoria, given his Germanic origins he wanted to introduce in his residences the familiar use of the Christmas tree; the news soon spread like a fashion all over the United Kingdom, and from there to the whole Anglo-Saxon world.

In Italy the first to decorate a Christmas tree was Queen Margherita in the second half of the nineteenth century Quirinale, and from her the fashion spread quickly throughout the country: it is no coincidence that the Christmas tree is one of the few foreign traditions to have arrived in Italy before its diffusion, of a more consumerist type, after the Second World War. In the early years of the twentieth century, Christmas trees experienced a moment of great diffusion, gradually becoming almost inevitable in the homes of both European and North American citizens, and coming to represent the symbol of Christmas probably more common worldwide. In the post-war period, the phenomenon acquired an unprecedented commercial and consumer dimension, which made the Christmas tree a potential status symbol and gave rise, together with related traditions, to the birth of a real Christmas decoration industry. Like every year the time has come to set up the Christmas tree: the day of the Immaculate Conception is traditionally the family appointment during which balls, festoons, and lights are dusted off. Punctual comes the temptation to do something different, some small change to give a more lively air to the classic decorations. Be inspired by 2016 trends and create a spectacular Christmas tree!

Eco-sustainable Christmas tree

L ‘ attention to ecology and respect for nature are becoming more common attitudes: it is not surprising that even in the world of decorations tend to use materials and environmentally friendly items are growing. Small decorations in wood, fabric or recycled materials, or even chocolate, dried fruit or biscuits. The possibilities are many, you just have to rely on your imagination!

White Christmas Tree

The total white is the most elegant look for your Christmas Tree 2016! Christmas stars, glass balls, festoons, fabric decorations, plush … all strictly white. A style decoration that gives a chic touch to the environment and helps to create a perfect Christmas atmosphere without giving up elegance.

Christmas tree with traditional colors: Gold and Silver

Imagine a big green Christmas tree, from which hang the golden and silver balls, angels, silver and bright lights. Add a pinch of blue, which evokes the color of the ice and gives the Christmas tree Nordic suggestions, or enrich it with copper-colored streaks. A tree thus gives light to the environment and promises the warmth of family parties!

Red Christmas Tree

Red is the color of Christmas: a tree dressed in red is the ideal solution to make the home the ideal scene for an unforgettable Christmas. Hang red, bright and opaque decorations, festoons, lights and a pinch of gold or silver. Also this year the red Christmas Tree is trendy: there are traditions so loved that they never go out of fashion.  Ready to decorate the Christmas tree? We hope these directions can help you. And if you want more tips for decorations, follow our Advent Calendar! Every day a surprise: discount coupons, exclusive packages and Christmas-themed content reserved for the members of the site. We are waiting for you!

Santa and Christmas tree are Christians. And December 25 is Jesus’ birthday


It is nonsense to say that the nativity is yes, but Santa Claus and the tree are not because they are children of consumerism; and it is also nonsense to propose, as I have heard, to move the celebration of Christmas to the summer, away from gifts and music hette, since the choice of December 25 was only a shrewdness of the first Christians to remove importance to the Feast of the Sun.

First we explain that Santa Claus, in his root, is nothing but Saint Nicholas of Bari. So not only is he a Christian but he is also holy. We know this from various historical data. There are depictions in which the bishop of Myri, in Turkey, is covered with equally sacred red and, with the white beard who wears in the east and the miter (is the name of the headgear), is identical to Santa Claus (as can see in the picture below). But, even more, for him he speaks his story. Which tells how a poor man, not having the dowry to give to his three daughters to marry her, he decided to make her a prostitute. Knowing what the bishop Nicholas, who was rich in family, he decided to throw to his father, to avoid the havoc, of money but at night, not to humiliate him. This operation was repeated for all three daughters and for this reason often in the depictions of the saint we see three “balls” (or “bowls”) that are nothing but the three bags full of money. The episode occurred in the third century and since then grew popular devotion for which the saint began to address the women who could not get married and, more generally, people in need of money. This devotion, which also brought with it the habit of behaving like the saint, that is to say “surprise” night gifts, spread very much: last year the relics of St. Nicholas, in Russia, were visited by two million and half of people, so much so that even Putin went to venerate them in Bari on his Italian trip. I tell this to make known how holy Klaus – which is what is called St. Nicholas in many countries – is loved in northern Europe: where in winter it is cold and there is snow, so St. Nicholas that is St. Klaus that is Santa Claus runs with the sleigh and the reindeer. But then the gifts when they do? They are celebrated on December 6th, at St. Nicholas, but also at Christmas or in the Epiphany because the meaning of giving is to make someone happy and this Someone is first of all Jesus making his birthday on December 25th, his parents and then, consequently, all Christians and all men. The gifts of this period, then, are taken at night and can be left under the crib or even under the Christmas tree. Because many times Pope Benedict has defined it as a clear symbol of the Christmas of Christ, because with its evergreen leaves it recalls life that does not die. And besides the leaves there are also the fruits, that is the Christmas balls. Because, as the liturgy has always reminded us, the Christmas tree also recalls the new tree of life, which is Christ, which is opposed to the tree “of death” which is the tree of knowledge of good and evil from which Eve took the forbidden fruit: the fruit of the tree of the earthly paradise brought death to man while the fruit of the tree of the Cross brings Christ, new life. And the life of Christ begins, in fact, on December 25th. the fruit of the tree of the earthly paradise brought death to man while the fruit of the tree of the Cross brings Christ, new life. And the life of Christ begins, in fact, on December 25th. the fruit of the tree of the earthly paradise brought death to man while the fruit of the tree of the Cross brings Christ, new life. And the life of Christ begins, in fact, on December 25th.

And here we are so we have reached the third point of the question: why was Jesus’ birthday scheduled for December 25th? Because, if you read carefully, the gospel says so. In the conversation between the archangel Gabriel and Mary it is said that Elizabeth awaits John the Baptist for six months (Lk 1:36) and at that moment – at the moment of the Annunciation – Jesus is conceived. So, if we knew when John was conceived Baptist, we would know the date of conception, and therefore of birth, of Jesus. But these elements are known. There is a very ancient tradition of the Eastern liturgy that fixes the announcement to Zechariah on September 24th and this date has been confirmed by historical discoveries that say with what cadence the calendars of the service to the Temple of the priestly classes took place. Now, the class of Abia, the one to which Zechariah belonged (Lk 1: 5), did his service at the end of September (day plus day less) and then everything is confirmed: a September 24 (day plus day less) John the Baptist was conceived (Lc 1- 24) and it is born, as the liturgy reminds us, on June 24th. Three months before, that is March 25, that is, six months after the Baptist was conceived, Jesus was conceived and nine months later, on December 25th, he was born, what is strange? And even less wonder that his Father, who is also the Creator, decides to give birth to the Son, the new sun of humanity, just when the sun begins to grow, that is at the end of the winter solstice. a September 24 (day plus day less) John the Baptist was conceived (Lc 1- 24) and was born, as the liturgy reminds us, on June 24th.