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Victorian Christmas Traditions

The Victorian age affected Christmas celebration in many ways. A number of the traditions and things we love on Christmas started in the Victorian age, like sending cards, evergreen boughs, garlands, wreaths & swags, the invention of the Christmas cracker and many more. The picture of a fat, jolly Father Christmas or Santa Claus is from the Victorian times. The Christmas tree became famous, as did gift shopping in big stores.
Queen Victoria of England married Prince Albert of Germany in 1840. There was a very common tradition to place a lighted, evergreen tree, in the home on Christmas time and this tradition became popular in England. He introduced the first Christmas tree. The Christmas tree was adorned with lighted candles and it was traditional to place Christmas presents under the tree. In this way, Christmas trees became as traditional as Christmas carols.

Candles were an essential part of Victorian Christmas traditions. A large number of homes used an Advent wreath to adorn during Christmas. It was a tradition to place lighted candles in a home's windows during the 12 days of Christmas to signify that food and shelter was available for weary travelers. Traders also habitually gave candles to their customers as gifts.

A kissing bough, occasionally called a kissing ball, is a double hoop of evergreen boughs, holly, ivy, apples, pears, ribbons, lighted candles, and other ornaments with streamers going up to a central point and a sprig of mistletoe hung from its center. Victorian Christmas traditions order that any woman who wanders under the kissing bough has to allow herself to be kissed. A large meal was served. Roasted goose, standing rib of beef with Yorkshire pudding, a boar's head, turkey, ham, oysters, dressing, potatoes, cranberry pie, mince pie, and plum pudding were used as Christmas food and these items are still used.