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Here are 5 crazy facts about Christmas, one of the world’s most popularly celebrated holidays.
1. During the Protestant Reformation, Christmas was banned in England as it was associated with drunkenness and misbehavior.
2. The original date of gift-giving was December 6, tied with the Feast of St. Nicolas. It wasn’t until the 17th century that the date was changed to December 24 following the Reformation.
3. The tradition of bringing home trees and decorating them for Christmas started in the Holy Roman Empire during the 1500s. German settlers introduced this custom to the US and by the 1870s, Christmas trees had become highly popular throughout the country.
4. The fledgling US wasn’t a big fan of Christmas. Following the Revolution, many Americans tend to saw Christmas as a British custom and the event quickly fell out of favor. It was until the 1870s that Christmas would become a federal holiday in the US.
5. Santa Claus is based on a real person. St. Nicolas, a prominent 4th century Christian figure, was the original inspiration between Santa Claus. He was well-known for his extreme generosity and habit of secret gift-giving.