Evergreen trees have traditionally been used to celebrate winter festivals (both Pagan and Christian) for thousands of years. According to Pagan tradition, Yule trees generally were outdoor live trees decorated with hanging candles. For Christians, the Christmas tree is associated with the commemoration of the Nativity of Jesus. In celebration of the holiday, here are some Christmas tree facts…
A Christmas tree is usually an evergreen conifer – such as a pine, spruce, or fir – decorated with lights and ornaments as a part of Christmas festivities. Christmas trees can be fresh cut, potted, or artificial. They are used both indoors and outdoors.
Some claim the Christmas tree originated in medieval Latvia in the early 1500’s, where Christians began to decorate trees. However, most historians say that the modern Christmas tree tradition began in Germany in the 1500s. Some even believe the famous Protestant reformist, Martin Luther, was the first one to decorate a Christmas tree in the traditional way.
They say that Luther brought a fir tree into his home at Christmastime and decorated it with candles. As the story goes, he was inspired by a nighttime forest scene he walked through on his way home, and wanted to recapture the scene for his family. The tree represented the forest and the candles represented the starlight in the forest at night.
The Christmas tree became more popular in Europe as the German custom made its way across the continent. By the 1840s, the Christmas tree tradition had reached the United Kingdom, where Queen Victoria and Prince Albert were photographed with one in Windsor Castle in 1841. The royal family took up the Christmas tree tradition thereafter.
The Christmas tree wasn’t introduced to America until the mid-1800s when German settlers brought Christmas trees to Pennsylvania. And then because Americans followed the royals and British high society closely during Victorian times, Christmas trees became more popular in America, thanks to Queen Victoria’s influence.
CouponRefund.com came up with some interesting Christmas Tree Facts. There is a complete picture of Christmas tree history in this infographic. Merry Christmas!