Tuesday, December 18, 2007

CHRISTMAS TREE

CHRISTMAS TREE HISTORY


Did a celebration around a Christmas tree on a bitter cold Christmas Eve at Trenton, New Jersey, turn the tide for Colonial forces in 1776? According to legend, Hessian mercenaries were so reminded of home by a candlelit evergreen tree that they abandoned their guardposts to eat, drink and be merry. Washington attached that night and defeated them.


The Christmas tree has gone through a long process of development rich in many legends, says David Robson, Extension Educator, Horticulture, with the Springfield Extension Center.

Some historians trace the lighted Christmas tree to Martin Luther. He attached lighted candles to a small evergreen tree, trying to simulate the reflections of the starlit heaven -- the heaven that looked down over Bethlehem on the first Christmas Eve.


Until about 1700, the use of Christmas trees appears to have been confined to the Rhine River District. From 1700 on, when lights were accepted as part of the decorations, the Christmas tree was well on its way to becoming a tradition in Germany. Then the tradition crossed the Atlantic with the Hessian soldiers.

Some people trace the origin of the Christmas tree to an earlier period. Even before the Christian era, trees and boughs were used for ceremonials. Egyptians, in celebrating the winter solstice -- the shortest day of the year -- brought green date palms into their homes as a symbol of "life triumphant over death". When the Romans observed the feast of saturn, part of the ceremony was the raising of an evergreen bough. The early Scandinavians were said to have paid homage to the fir tree.

To the Druids, sprigs of evergreen holly in the house meant eternal life; while to the Norsemen, they symbolized the revival of the sun god Balder. To those inclined toward superstition, branches of evergreens placed over the door kept out witches, ghosts, evil spirits and the like.

This use does not mean that our Christmas tree custom evolved solely from paganism, any more than did some of the present-day use of sighed in various religious rituals.

Trees and branches can be made purposeful as well as symbolic. The Christmas tree is a symbol of a living Christmas spirit and brings into our lives a pleasant aroma of the forest. The fact that balsam fir twigs, more than any other evergreen twigs, resemble crosses may have had much to do with the early popularity of balsam fir used as Christmas trees.

29 comments:

banhbaokepthit said...

Another Christmas is coming, and in this one, the Christmas of 2007, I cannot attend my beloved English classes in the Youth Foreign Language School, cannot listen to many Xmas songs, and cannot enjoy our Cải Lương, teacher!

So sad...! Miss all very much :(

Maybe you don't remember me because you have so many students, but I remember you clearly ^^ hihi

I hope to come back and study in your classes soon, teacher!

Merry Chritmas!!!

nguyenhonganhtesol said...

Thank you for remebering

meomatbu87 said...

Merry Christmas,everybody...Do u believe that decorating chrismas tree with ur love will make your relation ship be last forever...?I have one...but it's in my hometown...No way.. :)

binhminh_xanh156@ said...

Wish you have a special X'mas, teacher!

nguyenhonganhtesol said...

Wish you a happy (merry) Christmas.

Wish s.o s.th

PKDuong said...

Happy Christmas and Merry New Year 2007 Thầy Nguyễn Hồng Anh :)

Btw, why can't we say "Happy Christmas" instead of "Merry Christmas" :), is it traditional?

Ex-stun

nguyenhonganhtesol said...

You are right. It is traditional

Anonymous said...

why we know how to use "hear, listen", "see,look,watch"
happy christmas!

Be Con Tinh Nghich said...

Bip ... bip ... bip...
WARNING: Waiting...! This blog has been stopping today! The Administrator of this blog is too busy. Because he is Santa Claus today!!! Hihi! Open ur windows, look at ur chimneys... Yeah, he is there to visit ur house& bring happiness for u!!! Is it right, our Santa Claus? Hihihi

Anonymous said...
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nguyenhonganhtesol said...
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Anonymous said...

when we know to use"occur and hapen", "typhoon and storm", "common and popular"?

nguyenhonganhtesol said...

HAPPEN
1: to occur by chance —often used with it: it so happens I'm going your way
2: to come into being or occur as an event, process, or result: mistakes will happen
3: to do, encounter, or attain something by or as if by chance: I happen to know the answer
4
a: to meet or discover something by chance: happened upon a system that worked
b: to come or go casually : make a chance appearance: he might happen by at any time
5: to come especially by way of injury or harm: promise nothing will happen to you

occur
One entry found.
1 : to be found or met with :
2 : to come into existence :
3 : to come to mind: an idea that has occurred to me.



The two terms are interchangeable in some aspects, but what makes the one distinct from the other is predictivity.

Occurrence is a happening that is not predictable. It happens but you do not have a time table. This can be applied to natural events such as tornados, lightning and rainbows.

Happen is a term more general in its application- bad things happen to good people- "it happens" applies to miniscule even inconsequential things.

PKDuong said...

Dear thay, you are very kind to reply in detail like this to an Anonymous user who maynot be your stun. I wonder if I can make a query like that sometimes via email to you, my teacher :) ???

Thanks for the explain again thay, Or you should make an entries in "confusing word" like this "occur vs happen", I may ask you to pick this comment to become an entry of mine :) since I also see it as interesting question which many learner may got. Anyway, there are many outside, suchas: see and observe, hit and beat,...ok, see you later, i may found it by myself. Thanks teacher :)

PKDuong said...
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Anonymous said...
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nguyenhonganhtesol said...

-storm: very strong wind

- typhoon: very strong storm usually happening in the ocean

- common: usual; normal; popular

- popular: many people like; public; normal or not expensive

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PKDuong said...
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PKDuong said...
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Anonymous said...
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PKDuong said...
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nguyenhonganhtesol said...

Please stop

nguyenhonganhtesol said...
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nguyenhonganhtesol said...

pkduong,

You are ok. That is a good way to learn new things.

Anonymous: You should learn functions of English more, especialy how to ask a question or how to ask for information.

By the way all should post comment on the newest entry. Thank you all.

meomatbu87 said...

Hix,who spam ur blog...I'm very happy when I see 27 cm to u,I think it is wishes for u...all spam...:)U have a lovely Christmas ,teacher?

Anonymous said...

dear teacher!
do you know when you are angry, your face is very terible? anyway, you are a good teacher!
happy new year!