Christmas. The biggest party in the world. The most widely celebrated festival on Earth. But why do we celebrate it the way we do? Over the years great scholars and gifted academics have wrestled each other to a bloodied standstill over the question of Christmas, only to retire baffled and broken.
In The Book of Christmas, best-selling author and acclaimed historian, Christopher Winn, casts a revealing eye over the stories, myths and legends of the most celebrated festival of the year: Christmas. In this lovingly written collection of festive myths, legends and (quite often) bizarre traditions, discover the fascinating truth behind some of our most cherished Christmas rituals and customs. Along with a detailed Christmas timeline outlining significant moments and stories throughout history as well as the evolution behind many of the more mainstream customs, Christopher Winn unearths all sorts of unusual and symbolic traditions from around the world; from the Druidical origins of the parasitic plant mistletoe and why we now associate it with kissing, to Japan's predilection for a Kentucky Fried Chicken Christmas dinner, to why we send cards, hang decorations, sing carols, eat turkey and much, much more – discover the fascinating truth (and oddities) behind this very special holiday.
Beautifully produced and charmingly illustrated, The Book of Christmas is a treasure trove of all things Christmas to delight the whole family.
“Christopher Winn has done us all a great service. No need anymore to be tongue tied, nothing to throw into the conversation. His books are so informative and interesting!” Sarah Kennedy, BBC RADIO 2
“A marvellously entertaining and instructive read - a compendium of facts and anecdotes that offers an exciting new kind of guide to England” Simon Jenkins
“A treasure trove of unknown delights” Terry Wogan