2023 Home For The Holidays

Page 28 2023 Home For The Holidays Lincoln Daily News November 23, 2022 Chances are excellent that while wrestling a freshly-chopped fir tree through the front door or dragging an artificial one down from the attic, you have never given a thought to His Royal Highness, Prince Albert, husband to Great Britain’s Queen Victoria. In fact, you have Prince Albert and his German heritage to thank for any of your Christmas tree joys or troubles because it is through him that this German Christmas tradition became popular in the English-speaking world. However, the tradition of bringing greenery indoors during wintertime extends well before the 19th century when Victoria and Albert popularized a decorated tree inside of living spaces. Ancient cultures observed the winter solstice as a turning point in the year when the days began to lengthen and they could look forward to warmer weather and the planting season ahead. To celebrate this pivotal time, ancient Egyptians brought palm rushes indoors to welcome Ra, their sun god, back to health. Romans decorated homes and temples with boughs of evergreen for the feast of Saturnalia honoring Saturn, god of agriculture. Celtic Druids also decorated their temples with evergreen boughs, and Vikings believed evergreens to be a special gift from their own sun god, Balder. Church records from England indicate holly and ivy were used to decorate homes, streets, and parishes in some areas during the 14th and 15th centuries, but the Christmas tree tradition we know today appears to be rooted in the Middle Ages in what we now know as Germany. According to Time magazine, “In 1419, a guild in Freiburg put up a tree decorated with apples, flour-paste wafers, tinsel and gingerbread. In ‘Paradise Plays’ that were performed to celebrate the feast day of Adam and Eve, which fell on Christmas Eve, a tree of knowledge was represented by O Christmas Tree, O Christmas Tree: How Evergreens Ended Up Decking Our Halls for the Holidays Continued --