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Christmas Legends at My Merry

By Associate Editor Susan Barnes
Christmas Legends on My Merry Christmas Christmas has ancient roots in many societies. The passage of time has perpetuated tales of legend surrounding the very icons we treasure these days during the season. Santa Claus, the Yule Log, the Boar -- they're all legends and grand contributors to a global celebration uniquely observed in so many cultures. This is where we retell their stories on My Merry Christmas -- and how we contribute in growing their legend in our time.

The Christmas Legend of Abraham Lincoln
He never wrote a song, a poem or even a declaration about Christmas. But Abraham Lincoln's astute recognition of the growing importance and influence of Christmas in American culture went far in not only establishing Christmas as a National Holiday but also in winning the Civil War.

Norman Rockwell: American Christmas Legend
The story of the American Christmas of the 20th century was masterfully told without words by iconic American artist Normal Rockwell. This article explores the Christmas works of the American Christmas legend.

Robert L. May and the Mythical Beginnings of Rudolph
The story of Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer has morphed almost as much as the story of his creation. This article tells of Robert L. May's experience in creating a Christmas Legend -- and in becoming one himself.

The Story of Black Peter
The sinister side of St. Nicholas is carried out by a character named Black Peter. His job was to either hand out treats...or punishment. Interestingly enough, Black Peter is still a part of Christmas celebration in many areas of the world today.

The Snow Maiden
In a story line familiar to Christmas fans, this Russian legend of a young girl is belowed by millions and celebrated in film and in song.

The Tale of La Befana
Though similar to Russia's Baboushka, Italy's La Befana is a gift bringer with a style all her own. This is her sad and poignant story.

The Legends of Nature at the Nativity
Talking animals? Flame beating birds? All of nature it seems was there by the manger when Jesus was born. And they had a lot to say.

The Christmas Spider
Santa Claus as Spiderman? A tale from German folk lore, explained here for the masses of home work doers out there who have requested this information.

The True Story of Santa Claus
Santa Claus was a man and he is very real. This is his true story.

The Magi
They came without really knowing why. They traveled to a strange land, stood beforean evil and murderous dictator, and paid humble homage to an Infant King. Who were these wisemen of old? Why did they do what they did? A fascinating tale of mystery, adventure, magic and the evil designs of a jealous king.

The Legend of Baboushka
A noble visitor on a cold night caused the old woman to make a decision she would regret for the rest of her life. Read this old Russian folk tale of a Gift-Bringer named Baboushka.

Puritan Humbugs and a History of Christmas Bashing
They wore buckles on their shoes and were every bit the rigid pilgrims we make them out to be. In fact, Christmas-bashing was quite the trend in the days of the first Thanksgiving. This article tells the grim tale of why they cast Christmas aside and how we nearly lost it forever during the Puritan era.

Joseph, Mary and Jesus
The story is one we repeat each Christmas throughout life. "And lo, the shepherds were abiding their fields by night". We can practically recite these phrases from memory. And yet, behind the story and the legend - and some say, the myth - lies the compelling story of real individuals in a most unique circumstance.

The Kings of Extravagance
Christmas in times of old was the center of a power struggle between the Church and the Monarch. To the Church, it was a holy day. To most kings, it was a day of riotious revelry designed to endear the masses to the monarch. This article tells of this power struggle -- and how Christmas today bears to marks of both parties who kept it central in their struggle for control.

The Legend of the Boar
A boar is a wild pig -- large, ugly and not very friendly. It's image is about as far removed from the twinkle of Christmas lights as you can possibly get. However, in a land not so far away, the boar's head is faithfully remembered each Christmas and is a big a tradition as eggnog, Santa and Christmas trees combined. A great story and a must read.

Charles Dickens: A Merry Old Soul
And we thought Scrooge was a fictional character! This article tells the story of the life of Charles Dickens and how the author of A Christmas Carol could have been the very model for the character of Scrooge himself.

Clement C. Moore: The Story of Twas the Night Before Christmas
He wrote it for his kids. But it soon became beloved of kids all over the world.

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