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Little Christmas Trees


Lovely, Little Christmas Trees
Well, it's that time of year again when we all lose all sense of good taste and cover our living rooms with lovely, gawdy decorations. And at the centre of it is a lovely, conifer tree which will keep you fit over the festive period from hovering up all the needles. It is only at Christmas time when we realise just how many needles these things really have. And sometimes it seems like they are growing more, just to cast them all over your carpet.
So why do we bother? Well, it would appear it's all Queen Victoria's fault. Admittedly, we could look further back into pagan times when northern Europeans used to bring tree foliage and branches into the home in the winter time to ward off evil spirits during the festivals. These festivals were taken over by early Christians in Europe although bringing tree branches into the home at Christmas became less and less popular. Except in Germany.
It became tradition to bring whole trees into the house for decorating at Christmas time and the Norway Spruce, being indigenous to Germany was the most popular type of tree. They put little wooden decorations all over the tree and little candles on the ends of branches (call the fire brigade!). But in dear old Blighty, we seemed to do perfectly well without them.
And then there was old Queen Vic and Prince Albert. She thought bringing Norway spruce trees into the home at Christmas time was a stupendous idea and started ordering the same to happen at all her residences. Ever the social climbers, the rest of us duly followed suit and before we knew what was going on we were growing and cutting down millions of Norway spruce trees each year and chucking tons of tinsel all over it.
So on Christmas day, with belly full and all presents opened, perhaps you will be sitting down to enjoy the Queen's speech. Just glance across at your Christmas tree and think of the Germans!

28 November 2013 at 15:39 / Comment

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