Why Do We Celebrate Christmas on Dec. 25?
There are several reasons Christmas is celebrated on Dec. 25. The date is nine months after March 25, a day recognized by Christians as Annunciation. It was the day Mary was told she would was having a baby. The nine months that follow are an approximation of Jesus’ birth. Dec. 25 also coincides with pagan Winter Solstice celebrations like Saturnalia' and Dies Natalis Solis Invicti. Since they were historically celebrated around that time of year there was precedent for holiday festivities during this time of year.
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Next: What Does the Name 'Christmas' Mean and What Is the Meaning of Christmas?
What Does the Name 'Christmas' Mean and What Is the Meaning of Christmas?
Christmas is a shortened from the words “Christ’s mass.” It’s derived from the Middle English word "Cristemasse" which has Greek, Hebrew and Latin origins. Christmas is an annual holiday that honors the birth of Jesus Christ. It is celebrated by Christians around the world and is regarded as an important religious and cultural holiday.
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How Can We Celebrate Christmas?
Christmas is traditionally celebrated in many ways and celebrations vary across cultures. In the days leading up to Christmas, people usually put up special decorations including colorful lights and evergreen trees. Gifts are often placed under the tree and exchanged on Christmas day among loved ones. Large meals are also typically served as part of the celebration as well.
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Eggnog is the holiday tipple par excellence, and an excuse to dip into tradition, with a rich and comforting potion that’s been made for centuries. This recipe is the classic, spiked with enough bourbon, Cognac, and rum to make you think about designating a driver before making the first toast. Note that for the flavors to meld, age the eggnog in the refrigerator for at least 1 week.
If you want to bottle the eggnog (before the whipped egg whites and cream are stirred in), follow the step-by-step guide in our story about bottling soda pop. Unlike the soda recipes, though, eggnog does not ferment (so there’s no danger of explosion); it just ages under refrigeration. The actual bottling process is the same.
Safety note: Before you begin, read Is it safe to use raw eggs in eggnog?
For more seasonal cheer, check out our Eggnog French Toast, Eggnog Cheesecake, Eggnog Frosting, and Eggnog Crème Brûlée.
In an episode of The Morgenthaler Method, Jeffrey Morgenthaler shares his popular blender eggnog recipe from Clyde Common in Portland, Oregon.