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Christmas Quiz
What is the history behind all those popular rituals, carols, treats, and traditions? Take this quiz, then learn more about Christmas in the Holidays section of our archives.
Apart from a famously repetitive carol, what do the “twelve days of Christmas” refer to?

“Hark! The Herald Angels Sing” was originally “Hark! How All the Welkin Rings” (meaning “how all the heaven rings”). Which famous evangelist of the Great Awakening altered the first line of Charles Wesley’s Christmas carol?

Who is credited with creating the first Nativity scene (or creche) on Christmas Eve in 1223?

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow wrote a Christmas carol during the Civil War expressing his grief over the strife and the injury of his son in battle. By the time the poem was set to music in 1872, some stanzas were cut out, including the lines, “Then from each black, accursed mouth / The cannon thundered in the South." What is this song?

What plant traditionally associated with Christmas was brought to the United States by the American ambassador to Mexico in 1829?

In the early 400s, a controversy arose in the church over whether to call Mary, the mother of Jesus, Theotokos (“the one who gives birth to God”) or Christokos (“the one who gives birth to Christ”). What was the outcome of this debate?

Which of the following best describes the origin of the candy cane?

Several years ago, the Turkish city of Demre, built near the ruins of the ancient town of Myra, became the focus of an international kerfuffle when it replaced a bronze statue of Saint Nicholas with a big plastic Santa Claus. Which of the following is not an actual legend about Nicholas of Myra?

When did Christians first start celebrating Christmas on December 25?

In 614, Persian invaders sacked Jerusalem. Amidst the destruction they wreaked, however, they left the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem intact. Why?


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