Monthly Archives: December 2015

Countdown to Christmas 17: Saturnalia

Saturnalia was a Roman festival timed for the dead of winter.  It was held to mark what they thought was the death and then rebirth of the sun.  This seven day festival of lights and roaring fires began on December … Continue reading

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Countdown to Christmas 16: Is that a stocking I see?

Many of us will have hung stockings as children for Father Christmas to fill but they were probably far larger than the socks which originally were used.  It’s strange to think that 170 years ago no child would have put … Continue reading

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Countdown to Christmas 16: Pork Stuffing

Using chopped vegetables, meat, herbs and spices to stuff a chicken, rabbit or other meats is an ancient tradition going back to the 4th century. The word ‘stuffing’ didn’t appear in print until 1538. Before this date it was often … Continue reading

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Countdown to Christmas 18: Eggnog

Eggnog Sometimes seen as a drink most popular across the Atlantic, it is likely to have origins in England. The term ‘nog’ might have descended from the word ‘noggin’, an old English term for a small wooden mug. The drink … Continue reading

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Countdown to Christmas 15: Mince Pies Part 2

On 25 December 1662, Samuel Pepys described his Christmas feast: “A mess of brave plum-porridge and a roasted pullet for dinner, and I sent for a mince pie abroad, my wife not being well to make any herself yet.” Pepys … Continue reading

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Countdown to Christmas 14: Mince Pies

The ancestor of the mince pies we know today was the Christmas pie which contained beef, suet, currants, raisins, lemons, spices, orange peel, goose, tongue, fowl and eggs.  It was supposed to have 13 ingredients in it to represent Christ and … Continue reading

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Countdown to Christmas 13: Carols

  Carol actually comes from the french word ‘carole’.  It was originally used to describe a dance with a song.  It has only been associated with religion since the 1300s.  Many carols were written between 1400 and 1650. But in … Continue reading

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