People began to celebrate Christmas many years ago. The legend of the very first Christmas tells: « … The shepherds heard from the Angel that Christ the Lord was born to Mary in Bethlehem. They came there and found a little boy in a stable, lying in a manger. His name was Jesus. " Glory to God! " - they said. " Glory to God! " …» Christmas
Christmas is celebrated on the 25 th of December. It is the greatest holiday in Great Britain. There are a lot of interesting traditions connected with Christmas in Great Britain. Some weeks before Christmas English people decorate their houses with holly and electric lights.
Holly is an evergreen plant with sharp-pointed leaves and red berries. Many years ago people began to put holly in their homes during the dark cold winters. They liked to look at holly and think about spring and the sun.
Eve (December, 24) there is a bunch of mistletoe in every house. Mistletoe is an evergreen plant with small leaves and small berries. Under this bunch boys kiss girls.
Four weeks before Christmas people bring home a special wreath - Advent Wreath. They put it on the table and place four candles on it. Every Sunday they light only one candle.
A Yule log is a piece of wood which people burn in the fireplace on Christmas Eve.
People also buy and send Christmas cards to their friends usually containing the message Merry Christmas. The cards often show pictures of Nativity, Santa Claus, Christmas tree, Robins or scenes of old-fashioned Christmases.
A pantomime is a traditional performance for children at Christmas.
Most families usually have a Christmas tree in the front room, glittering with coloured lights, bright shining balls or other decorations (tinsel, toys, …). There is a shining star or an angle at the top of the Christmas tree.
Every year there is a very big Christmas tree from Norway in London, in Trafalgar square. In the evening before Christmas people come to Trafalgar Square to look at the tree.
Children write letters to Father Christmas. Father Christmas has a white beard and long green or red clothes.
On Christmas Eve children leave long socks called Christmas stockings at the end of their beds or by the chimney or hang them by the fireplace so that Father Christmas will fill them with presents. Children hope that Father Christmas will come down the chimney during the night and bring presents.
On Christmas Day at 3 o'clock p.m. English people watch the Queen on television as she delivers her traditional Christmas massage to the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth.
English people celebrate Christmas Day with a big holiday dinner. Families sit down to a big turkey dinner followed by Christmas pudding. They like to eat roast turkey, potatoes and green vegetables. A turkey is a traditional Christmas bird.