Victorian Christmas, What Do You Know?


So many Christmas rituals we have, even here in New Zealand Aotearoa, but where do they all come from? And are the myths true, did Coke give Father Christmas his red coat, why is he Father Christmas and not Santa, and what about those weird Victorian Christmas cards!
Many of the UK’s best-loved Christmas traditions first became popular in the Victorian era. In a special edition of the You’re Dead To Me podcast, Greg Jenner is joined by historian Dr Fern Riddell and comedian Russell Kane to discuss the 19th-century festive customs that are still central to our seasonal celebrations today – from crackers to Christmas cards. Here are eight of the most surprising things we learned...

  1. The first Christmas crackers were known as ‘Bangs of Expectation’
  2. Victorian Christmas cards were the stuff of nightmares
  3. Beer was once a popular present for young boys
  4. Our Christmas tree tradition came from Germany
  5. The idea that Coca Cola first dressed Father Christmas in red and white is a myth
  6. Mince pies were originally shaped like coffins
  7. Queen Victoria’s Christmas dinner was sent to the Isle of Wight by train and royal yacht
  8. A temporary London kitchen fed 22,000 people on Christmas Day

Read more at You're Dead To Me: 8 amazing facts about the history of Christmas

LISTEN to the 30 minute podcast, loads of Christmas fun AND info.

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