Monday, December 14, 2009

12 Days of Christmas

Recently, my mother sent me this great piece (author unknown) all about different Christmas traditions around the world (some with gorgeous photos) & at the very end of this piece was a description of the hidden meaning in the 12 days of Christmas song. It was an interesting bit of history:
From 1558 until 1829, Roman Catholics in England were not permitted to practice their faith openly. Someone during that era wrote this carol as a catechism song for young Catholics.
It has two levels of meaning: the surface meaning plus a hidden meaning known only to members of their church. Each element in the carol has a code word for a religious reality which the children could remember.
-The partridge in a pear tree was Jesus Christ.
-Two turtle doves were the Old and New Testaments.
-Three French hens stood for faith, hope and love.
-The four calling birds were the four gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke & John.
-The five golden rings recalled the Torah or Law, the first five books of the Old Testament.
-The six geese a-laying stood for the six days of creation.
-Seven swans a-swimming represented the sevenfold gifts of the Holy Spirit--Prophesy, Serving, Teaching, Exhortation, Contribution, Leadership, and Mercy.
-The eight maids a-milking were the eight beatitudes.
-Nine ladies dancing were the nine fruits of the Holy Spirit--Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness, and Self Control.
-The ten lords a-leaping were the ten commandments.
-The eleven pipers piping stood for the eleven faithful disciples.
-The twelve drummers drumming symbolized the twelve points of belief in the Apostles' Creed.
While I can't top the story, it sparked an idea to do a 12 days of Christmas promotion, so for each day until Christmas I will post a Christmas special through my shop/shops on Twitter. If you don't already follow, add me to you list so that you can see the specials. For anyone who does not have a Twitter account, I will edit this post, each day to include these specials.
Do you know of any interesting holiday historical facts?
I hope everyone has a wonderful '12 days of Christmas' or is having a great season, whatever holidays you do or do not celebrate! SAM

Day one: Vintage rhinestone 'party' pin set with case

Day 2 Tattoo Sailor Girl Sails the Seas of Peace OOAK skirt

Day 3 The King & Queen of Hearts framed embroidery set

Day 4 While the City Sleeps Messenger Bag

Day 5 Hidden Dragons bag

Day 6 Peace, Love & Balance a small easel framed embroidery samsstuff on ArtFire

Day 7 Pink Keepsake Box

Day 8 Rhinestone Hearts & Skulls Bracelet

Day 9 Peace Dots Keepsake Box

Day 10 Sunshine Keepsake Box

Day 11 Peace & Balance Choker

Day 12 Pretty Bird Bracelet

I've gotten behind on this (work, etc.) I'll catch up & leave everything up until 1/1/10. Buy a little something for yourself? New Year's? Start early for Valentine's Day?


Jamee said...

I had never heard that! Thanks for sharing!

Stopping by from SITs :)

Kisha said...

Wow, thanks for sharing such a great post, I did not know any of that!

Stopping by from SITS!

thatgirlblogs said...

all news to me, loved it!

Debbie in Nashville said...

Very interesting!

Aik said...

Wow, I've never heard about the real meaning behind the song. Thanks for sharing it with us!

Debbie in Nashville said...

Happy New Year!!