Last week we got you started on our two-part series about Christmas facts and trivia (if you have not read the first installment yet, you can read it here: 50 Christmas facts & trivia Part 1).
Check out today’s guide for even more Christmas facts and trivia!
Read on to learn more about the favorite time of the year 🎄
25 More Christmas Facts and Trivia
- The Coke Santa connection – Did you know that Coke (the popular drink) has a big connection to Santa? Because they do. When we think of Santa Claus these days we think of a red-clad jolly fellow, but this wasn’t always the image of Santa. The current version of Santa that we are used to is actually the result of an advertising campaign that was run by Coca Cola in 1931! So the next time you drink Coke, don’t forget to ho ho ho!
- Hanging stockings came from generous St. Nick – The tradition of hanging stockings during Christmas came from an old legend about a poor man who was helped by good old St. Nick. The man did not have the money to pay the dowry for his three daughters (yes, unfortunately dowry was a thing back in the day). So St. Nick dropped a bag of gold down his chimney, and the bag fell into the stockings the poor man’s daughters had hung to dry. Thus the practice of hanging stockings began! On a side note, we have a feeling the whole Santa coming down the chimney legend also started there… What do you think?
- The first appearance of Rudolph the Reindeer – Just like the modern version of Santa was the result of an advertising campaign (by Coke), the most famous of Santa’s reindeers – Rudolph – also has a similar beginning. Rudolph was the result of a marketing campaign by the Montgomery Ward department store in 1939.
- Jingle Bells wasn’t originally a Christmas song! – Jingle Bells, jingle bells, jingle all the way… That’s the song most of us think about when we think about Christmas songs. But it turns out this was originally NOT a Christmas song! No, the song was originally written for Thanksgiving (and was originally titled “One Horse Open Sleigh”), but was later republished as “Jingle Bells” in 1857.
- Candles in windows – Even though it’s not a very popular practice these days, but putting a candle in each window is one of the oldest Christmas traditions (at least for Catholics). Turns out it symbolises the belief that Jesus Christ is the ultimate light in the world. That’s a sweet sentiment, don’t you think?
- Christmas accounts for a quarter of all personal spending in the US – Christmas is not just a time to make jolly, it is also one of the biggest shopping season of the year. It is so big, in fact, that according to US spending statistics about a quarter of all personal spending in the US takes place during the Christmas/holiday shopping season. That’s a lot of shopping!
- Big time gift spending – You now know that Christmas is a big time for shopping. But do you know just how big? Bigger than you might think… According to the World Economic Forum’s research people will spend around $1 Trillion this year! A trillion dollars, and that’s just in the US alone!
- Biggest after-Christmas sale – Christmas is definitely a big time for spending, and sales. But when do you think the biggest after-Christmas sale happens? Christmas eve, Christmas day, the day after Christmas? If you said the day after Christmas then you are correct! The biggest after-Christmas sale happens the day after Christmas (which is also known as Boxing Day). So if you want to grab some after-Christmas bargains, you know what day to wait for!
- 1.9 billion cards – Do you know how many Christmas cards are sent each year? A whopping 1.9 billions, and that’s just in the United States! Yes you read that right, 1.9 billion. Not million but BILLION! That can cover a whole state!
- The least economically active day of the year – Christmas might be one of the most popular shopping seasons of the year, but Christmas day happens to be the least economically active day of the year (in most Western countries anyway). All shops and banks and public offices close down, and there are even laws that ban any sort of commercial activity on this day (like the Christmas Day (Trading) Act 2004 in the UK).
- The biggest season for movies – When do you think the biggest movie releases happen in a year? If you said Christmas, then you are absolutely right! Christmas is by far the biggest season for movies, which is why most film studios wait till this time of the year to release their biggest films. Not surprising since most people are home during this time of year. This is yet more reason to look forward to Christmas (especially if you are a movie buff :)).
- The practice of using evergreens is older than Christmas – Decorating for Christmas just does not happen without including evergreens in some form, be it as wreathes, garlands, or of course the Christmas tree. But did you know that this practice of using evergreens during Christmas goes back to the time of ancient Romans and Egyptians? They used evergreens to mark winter solstice, as a reminder that spring was on its way.
- Hazardous decorations – Decorating our homes with Christmas lights is a big part of the Christmas festivity. But there is a dark side to this – based on the research data from the Consumer Product Safety Commission, around 14,700 people visit hospital emergency rooms every year during November and December as a result of holiday-related decorating accidents! Decorating is great, but do be careful when decorating your home for Christmas. After all, Christmas just would not be fun when an accident is involved. Prevention is better than cure…
- Christmas fire – Earlier you learned how decorating during Christmas is a big cause of accidents. But it turns out hazards during Christmas are not just limited to decorations. Dried-out Christmas trees are another big cause. How big? Well, according to the CPSC every year they cause around 10 deaths, and $15.7 million in property damage, so pretty big. If you are getting a real Christmas tree, DO NOT forget to water it!
- Santa has a real address! – Santa might be a fictional character (or is he…), but he has a real-world address! The address was an initiative by the – Canadian Post Office. Aren’t Canadians nice🙂 Anyway, if you want to write to Santa, here are more details: Santa Letter-Writing Program and here is the actual address: Santa Claus, North Pole, HOH OHO, Canada. Don’t forget to include a return address if you want a response!
- 15 billion letters – Santa is not the only one who gets letters during Christmas. Christmas might actually be the most popular time for sending letters, with around 15 billion letters delivered in the US alone!
- The origin of the word “Xmas” – Xmas is a common short-form of Christmas these days, but do you know where this term originated? It was back in 1551, when Christmas was called “Xtemmas” but then the term was eventually shortened to “Xmas”. This is mainly a result of the fact that in Greek alphabet “X” stands for “Chi”.
- Christmas aphrodisiac – Mistletoe is a big part of Christmas celebrations these days (especially for couples), but it might not be as innocent as you think. In the ancient times it was a symbol of virility and fertility, and was considered an aphrodisiac by the Druids! So the next time you are joking about getting under a mistletoe, you will know the back story😉
- Dung on a twig – Here’s another interesting fact about mistletoe: the word literally means “dung on a twig” in German! This is mainly because of the way the plants spread – birds called Mistle thrush birds eat the plant’s berries, digest the seeds, and then the droppings of the birds eventually grow into new plants. Thus, dung on a twig!
- Biggest Church turnout – Do you know what the most popular day for going to the Church is? It is Christmas Eve! Christmas, as it turns out, is the popular time to go to the Church.
- Most popular Christmas meat – What do you think is the most popular Christmas meat? When we asked some of our readers, we got mixed answers – some said turkey, others said ham, and some even opted for lamb and chicken. They are all great, so we can understand why different people have different preferences. But the crown for the most popular Christmas meat actually goes to ham, or rather, spiral-cut ham. It is by far the most iconic Christmas meat. That said, it is perfectly fine if that’s not your preference, or if you prefer not to have meat at all. The festivity (and enjoying Christmas) is more important than the exact food item after all🙂
- Quiet canes – Candy canes are one of the most popular candies during Christmas, but do you know how they came about? Turns out candy canes were originally given out by a choirmaster to young children in order to keep them quiet during long church services. But it didn’t really catch on until 1847 – that is when they really went viral, thanks largely to a German-Swedish immigrant who decorated his Christmas tree with candy canes.
- There are more lights on the Rockefeller tree than you can count! – The Christmas tree at Rockefeller Center is one of the most iconic Christmas trees in the world, and a big reason for that is the massive number of lights that decorates the tree. But do you know how many lights are on that tree? More than 50,000!
- The eight reindeers of Santa – Do you know how many reindeers are attached to Santa’s sleigh? Eight. But who do you think came up with this idea? Turns out it was the author who is famous for writing “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow“, Washington Irving. He was a big fan of Santa Claus, and even founded the Saint Nicholas Society of the City of New York!
- Norway’s gift – When you think of iconic Christmas trees, the one in London’s Trafalgar Square will definitely come to mind. That tree, which is one of the tallest Christmas trees in the world, is actually a gift from Norway. Every year since 1947 Norway has been gifting a Christmas tree to the residents of London, as a thank you for UK’s help during the Second World War. Norway sure knows how to say thank you!
What are your thought about these Christmas facts and trivia? Which one intrigued you the most, which one did you find the most interesting?
Do you have any Christmas facts and trivia of your own to share?
Share your thoughts (and trivia) in the comments section below.
By the way, if you like facts and trivia, check these out for more interesting and fun facts.
Have a great Friday, and weekend!
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