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Christmas in Britain (Рождество в Британии)

Christmas in Britain (Рождество в Британии)


Christmas Day , December 25,is probably the most popular holiday in

Great Britan. It is a family holiday. Traditionally all relatives and

friends give each other presents. So before Christmas all the department

stores and shops are crowded, everybody is choosing a present. In general,

people get prepared for this holiday very carefully. They decorate their

houses in the traditional way, that is the Christmas trees are set up in

houses, in the streets and churches. The Christmas trees are always

decorated with fairy lights, angels and small toys. In addition litlle

packets with nuts, candies and special biscuits are hung on the tree.

Presents are put around the tree and artificial ''frost'' is scattered over

the branches.

The Germans are believed to be the first to use the Christmas tree in

their celebrations, and Martin Luther was the first to place a star on the

top of the tree. This star represent the star that appeared over the stable

in which Christ was born.

In Great Britain the Christmas tree became popular when Queen

Victoria used it.

Besides the Christmas tree, holly and mistletoe are used to decorate

the house. Branches of holly are put up behind pictures and mistletoe is

hung over doors, so the young people have a chance to kiss the girls under

it, plucking each time a red berry from the mistletoe. It is said that the

girl who was not kissed under it at Christmas would not get married that


On the eve of the Christmas children hang their stockings so that

Santa Claus could put presents into them : oranges, sweets, nuts and if the

child didn't behave properly Santa Clause can put there a piece of coal as


Santa Claus got his name from a man known as St.Nickolas who lived in

Asia in the fourth century. He gave his wealth to the poor and often to

children. After he died the Dutch brought

this legend to colonial America. Soon the Dutch name Sinter Kluas became

Santa Claus.

Carol singing is an essential part of Christmas. No church or school

is without its carol service. Carols may be traditional or by known

composers they can express different feelings. Carols appeared in Christmas

history about the fifteenth century.

Usually children come around in the evening to the front doors and

start singing carols and the people living in these houses give children

candies, nuts, pies and so on, to thank them for carol singing.

A typical Christmas lunch includes turkey with cranberry sauce and

pudding. Every young woman in each household helps to stir the Christmas

pudding if she wishes to be married that year.

Usually a coin or two are hidden inside the pudding and part of the fun is

to see who finds it.

After the lunch they go to the sitting room to listen to the Christmas

speech of the Queen, shown on TV.

So Christmas is a merry family holiday for all the people of Great


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