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Do you know the History of Christmas Trees?

Pulished on Nov. 06, 2020

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Evergreen fir trees have traditionally been used to celebrate winter festivals for thousands of years. The pagans decorated their houses with branches at the winter solstice, because it reminded them of spring. The Romans decorated their temples with fir trees on the festival of Saturnalia. Christians regard it as a sign of eternal life with God.

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No one is really sure when the fir tree was first used as a Christmas tree. It probably started in Northern Europe about 1,000 years ago. Many early Christmas trees seemed to be chained upside down from the ceiling.

In many parts of Northern Europe, other early Christmas trees were cherry or hawthorn plants, which were put in pots and brought indoors in order to hopefully bloom at Christmas. If you cannot afford a real plant, people will make wooden pyramids, which are decorated like a tree with paper, apples and candles on them. Sometimes they are brought to the home rather than displayed at home.

The wooden pyramid tree may be like a paradise tree. These are used for medieval German mystery or miracle plays performed in front of the church on Christmas Eve. In the early calendar of the Church of Saints, December 24 was the day of Adam and Eve. The Paradise Tree represents the Garden of Eden. Before the script starts, it often parades around the town as an advertisement for the script. These scripts tell biblical stories to people who cannot understand.

The first recorded use of trees in Christmas and New Year celebrations was the dispute between Tallinn Estonia and Riga between the cities of Latvia! They both claimed to have their first tree. Tallinn (1441) and Riga (1510). Both trees were planted by the "Blackhead of Blackheads", a local unmarried merchant, now an association for foreigners in Estonia and Latvia.

Except that they were placed on the town square, danced by the Brotherhood of Blackheads, and then burned down by arson, little is known about this tree. This is like the custom of Yule Log. The term "tree" may also mean a mast or pole, and the tree may resemble a "paradise tree" or a tree-shaped wooden candlestick, rather than a "real" tree.

On the city square in Riga, the capital of Latvia, there is a plaque inscribed with "Riga's First New Year Tree in 1510" in eight languages.

A photo from Germany in 1521 shows a tree parading in the street with a man riding a horse behind him. The man is dressed as a bishop and may represent Saint Nicholas.

In 1584, the historian Balthasar Russow wrote in Riga the tradition of a fir tree on the market square. The young man "sang with a group of girls and women, then danced and danced there, and then lit the tree." . Since 1570, there has been a record of a small tree in Bremen, Germany. It is described as a tree decorated with "apples, nuts, dates, pretzels and paper flowers". It was exhibited in the "Gathering Place".

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