Christmas Music, Audio Recordings, Specials, Humor, Books & Movies To Remember & Cherish
James King
United States
North Central Louisiana / No Longer A Resident of the Shreveport/Bossier City Area
Louisiana
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Thanks to the Internet, an entire treasure trove of Christmas music, audio recordings, specials, humor, books, and movies from yesteryear are available at our fingertips to relive and enjoy not only via streaming audio but also by video performances by some of our greatest recording artists, including some rare gems that tend to be overlooked.

When you first click to this page, I'd encourage you to just allow a minute or two (depending upon your connection speed) for it it load because it contains many visuals and video links. When viewing a YouTube video link, be sure to remember that you can view the video full screen by clicking on the icon of the box frames that's located in the right-hand corner of the YouTube viewing panel. To view the link on YouTube itself, simply click on the YouTube icon located near the right-hand corner of the screen. (Hover your cursor over the tube section of the YouTube icon until the tube glows red and then click and that take you directly to YouTube itself to view the video.

As to how I myself feel about the content of my Geeklist webpages herein, singer Lorrie Morgan sang it best....


"My Favorite Things" by Lorrie Morgan






Enjoy!


- James W. King
Christmas 2014


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1. Board Game: 12 Days [Average Rating:6.52 Overall Rank:2604]
Board Game: 12 Days
James King
United States
North Central Louisiana / No Longer A Resident of the Shreveport/Bossier City Area
Louisiana
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"The 12 Days of Christmas"
The Ultimate Performance of This Time-Honored Carol by The King's Singers & The Mormon Tabernacle Choir







"The 12 Days After Christmas"
Performed by Deborah Voigt & The Mormon Tabernacle Choir
The Aftermath & Unforseen Consequences Posed By "The 12 Days of Christmas"







"A Musicological Journey Through 'The Twelve Days of Christmas'""
Composed by Craig Courtney
From Monks Singing Gregorian Chants to John Phillip Sousa's Patriotic Marches







"The 12 Pains of Christmas"
By the Bobby River Show Comedy Troupe







Sing-Along Karaoke Version of "The 12 Pains of Christmas"







12 Days of Christmas Gone Wild"
Performed by Straight No Chaser







"The 12 Days of Christmas"
Performed by comedian/songster Allan Sherman






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2. Board Game: 12 Days of Christmas [Average Rating:5.99 Overall Rank:8650]
Board Game: 12 Days of Christmas
James King
United States
North Central Louisiana / No Longer A Resident of the Shreveport/Bossier City Area
Louisiana
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Microbadge: Carcassonne fanMicrobadge: Roma fanMicrobadge: Golden MeepleMicrobadge: Tigris & Euphrates fanMicrobadge: Dominion fan


"The 13 Missing Days Of The 12 Days of Christmas"
The Surprising Origin of "The Twelve Days of Christmas" Carol & Its Predecessor, "The 25 Days of Christmas"
(C) Copyright 2001 by James William King (jameswking@aol.com); All Rights Reserved.


The origin of the English traditional carol, "The 25 Days of Christmas", lay buried in obscurity until the late 19th century when one Spanish scholar, don Santiago Guillermo del Rey (1834-1899) of Sevilla, Spain came across the text of the original version in the diary of an ancestor in his late grandfather's libary.

While it is generally agreed that the English traditional carol we know today as "The 12 Days of Christmas" dates from some period not later than the 16th century, it was not until don Santiago del Rey came across some passages in his ancestor's diary that carologists were finally able to more accurately date the English version of the song to the reign of King Henry VIII of England.

Traditionally, the 12 days of Christmas were believed to be the 12 days from Christmas, Dec. 25 to Epiphany eve, Jan. 5. (January 6 was celebrated as Epiphany and Three Kings Day.) However, the custom varied. Some eras in English history excluded counting Christmas among the 12 days of Christmas but counted Epiphany as the 12th day; others did not.

In October 1893, while casually reading the diary of his ancestor, don Santiago del Rey discovered the truth of the matter: His own ancestors had known the exiled English composer of NOT "The 12 Days of Christmas" BUT *"The 25 Days of Christmas".*

In its original form of 25 days, it was evident that, excluding the main holiday itself, there were 12 days to be celebrated before Christmas -- Dec. 13-24, the Antenatale -- and 12 days afterward -- Christmastide -- up to Jan. 6 (Three Kings Day, when gifts were originally exchanged and traditionally opened).

The original gifts and 25 days were:

Dec. 13 - A partridge in a pear tree
Dec. 14 - 2 turtle doves
Dec. 15 - 3 French hens
Dec. 16 - 4 calling birds
Dec. 17 - 5 golden rings
Dec. 18 - 6 geese a-laying
Dec. 19 - 7 swans a-swimming
Dec. 20 - 8 maids a-milking
Dec. 21 - 9 ladies dancing
Dec. 22 - 10 lords a-leaping
Dec. 23 - 11 pipers piping
Dec. 24 - 12 drummers drumming
Dec. 25 - 13 ponies prancing
Dec. 26 - 14 cockrels crowing
Dec. 27 - 15 peacocks strutting
Dec. 28 - 16 squires a-fowling
Dec. 29 - 17 jugglers juggling
Dec. 30 - 18 knights a-jousting
Dec. 31 - 19 friars' blessings
Jan. 1 - 20 jesters jesting
Jan. 2 - 21 minstrels singing
Jan. 3 - 22 Yule logs blazing,
Jan. 4 - 23 Christmas puddings
Jan. 5 - 24 bowls o' wassail
Jan. 6 - 25 boar's heads roasting

______________


Why would crowing cockrels (roosters) be included among the gifts?

Ironically, it appears to be tangentially tied in with the old Christmas Eve legend called "The Night the Animals Talked" wherein domestic farm animals gain the power of speech at midnight Christmas Eve and share with their young ones the story of that first Christmas when their ancestors witnessed the birth of the Christ Child in the manger in that Bethlehem stable long, long ago. They also sing hymns of praise in their own animal tongues as well. (The four-legged animals were believed to even kneel.) Nearly a century of so later, William Shakespeare even alluded to the legend in a brief snippet of dialogue from "Hamlet" in which he remarks about how the rooster was believed to singing out his praise all night long:

"Cock-crow at Christmas"
from William Shakespeare's "Hamlet"

Some say that ever 'gainst that season comes
wherein our Saviour's birth is celebrated,
the bird of dawn singeth all night long;
And then, they say, no spirit can walk abroad;
The nights are wholesome; then no planets strike;
No fairy tales nor witch hath power to charm,
so hallowed and so gracious is this time.



Thus, the cockrels crowing in "The 25 Days of Christmas" evidently ties in tangentially with the legend of "The Night the Animals Talked" even though they're not necessarily crowing at night. The cockrel also forshadows the three crows of the cock that the apostle Peter heard during the early morning hours when he denied knowing Jesus Christ.

Moreover, the composer of "The 25 Days of Christmas" in its original French version is speculated to be the same one who authored the 12th-century French carol, "The Friendly Beasts" wherein each beast speaks and takes pride in its gift to the Christ Child.


At least two competing theories have been proposed as the origin of "The 25 Days of Christmas."

The English translator/composer of "The 25 Days of Christmas" was an exile in Spain because of an unfortunate misunderstanding with either King Henry VIII. Allegedly, the song in its original evolving form was a favorite of King Henry VIII and for that very reason, the composer continued to add verses to the carol with the passing seasons. In its first version, the song contained only 12 days, marking the days from Christmastide (Dec. 13 to Dec. 24). The composer added 13 other new days over a period of years which corresponded to those tumultuous years in the royal household when King Henry VIII was marrying, divorcing and beheading wives.

When he had finished the carol in its completed 25-day form, the composer had his own minstrel group perform it for the king himself. At first, King Henry VIII was all effusive and embraced the carol. However, some of his more noodle-headed courtisans began a whisper campaign, insinuating that the final item, "25 boar heads roasting," was most definitely an affront to His Royal Highness because roasted boar head was mere peasant fare. Moreover, they inferred that through his use of decapitated boars' heads the composer was actually making a veiled, satirically barbed political comment snickeringly criticizing King Henry VIII's penchant for beheading wives.

(Whether the king disapproved of the "19 friars' blessings" verse is unknown, but it couldn't have much impressed him if he and/or his courtiers inferred that it was an indirect affirmation of Catholicism.)

Alerted to the king's displeasure, the composer fled to France and then to Spain. Outraged about the perceived slight, King Henry VII did the next best thing to decapitating the composer himself: He "decapitated" 13 days from the composer's Christmas carol, rolling it back to its original 12 days of the Christmastide. (Because of the effects of aging and damage, don Santiago del Rey was unable to distinctly discern the name of the composer of the song. And thus, he remains anonymous to this day.)

And then there's another legend discovered in recent years which alleges that the court composer fled to France not during the reign of Henry VIII but some decades later when Mary, Queen of Scots, ascended to the throne. Reason: The court composer's ancestors originally hailed from the Languedoc region of southern France where the Cathars, Templar Knights, and the Albigensian Dynasty once ruled, all of whom were at various times declared enemies of Roman Catholicism by the Popes of Rome.

It may well be that after Mary, Queen of Scotts' short reign, the 12-day version of "The 25 Days of Christmas" was co-opted by the pro-Catholic English as an allegorical memory device for Christians to surreptitiously recite in the form of a song in order to learn and remember some of the basic tenets of Roman-Catholic doctrine. For example, the "true love" in the song is alleged to have represented God and the "me" who receives the presents is the Christian.


The other alleged symbolic meanings of the 12-days version of the song:

1 Partridge in a pear tree = Jesus Christ who died on a tree as a gift from God

2 Turtledoves = the Old and New Testaments

3 French Hens = faith hope and love - the three gifts of the Spirit that abide (I Corinthians 13)

4 Calling Birds = the four Gospels which sing the song of salvation through Jesus Christ

5 Golden Rings = the first five books of the Bible also called the "Books of Moses."

6 Geese a-laying = the six days of Creation.

7 Swans a swimming = the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit: 1) prophecy, 2) ministry, 3) teaching, 4) exhortation, 5) giving, 6) leading, and 7) compassion (I Corinthians 12:8-11, Romans 12, Ephesians 4, 1 Peter 4:10-11)

8 Maids a-milking = the Eight Beatitudes: 1) Blessed are the poor in spirit, 2) those who mourn, 3) the meek, 4) those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, 5) the merciful, 6) the pure in heart, 7) the peacemakers, 8) those who are persecuted for righteousness' sake. (Matthew 5:3-10)

9 Ladies dancing = the nine Fruits of the Holy Spirit: 1) love, 2) joy, 3) peace, 4) patience, 5) kindness, 6) generosity, 7) faithfulness, 8) gentleness, and 9) self-control (Galatians 5:22-23)

10 Lords a-leaping = the Ten Commandments

11 Pipers piping = the eleven faithful Disciples

12 Drummers drumming = the twelve points of the Apostles' Creed


While the 12-day version of the song may well have served as a secret catechism for Catholics who were later not allowed to practice their faith openly in 16th-century England, it is ironic that the "25 Days of Christmas" respectively in its original French originated from the Languedoc region of 12th-century southern France, the stronghold of the Cathars and the Templar Knights, for apparently similar reasons because of Roman Catholic prejudice toward them. Indeed, it may well be that Cathar tradition originated the intriguing French belief that on Christmas Eve, while the genealogy of Christ is being chanted at the Midnight Mass, hidden treasures are revealed.

That's because the Cathars and Templar Knights believed that Jesus Christ left a human lineage of descendants through His wife, Mary Magdalene, who while pregnant fled to France after His crucifixion. The Cathars and Templars obscured their controversial belief in the human lineage of Jesus Christ by referring to it in serreptitious symbolic terms as the Holy Grail, the sacred chalice of the Last Supper.

It is interesting that proponents of "12-Days-of-Christmas"-As-Secret-Catchism Theory would allege that "the partridge in a pear tree" represented Jesus Christ while at the same time acknowledging that Christ is symbolically presented as a mother partridge in memory of the expression of Christ's sadness over the fate of Jerusalem: "Jerusalem! Jerusalem! How often would I have sheltered thee under my wings, as a hen does her chicks, but thou wouldst not have it so..."

The Cathars and Templars would have said that the mother partridge represented Mary Magdalene, the wife of Jesus, and that the pear tree she sits in represents the familial line (family tree) of Christ's descendants. (The grape vine also denoted similar symbolism).

More intriguing, the composer of the original French version of "The 25 Days of Christmas" is believed to have been none other than the author of the Grail romances himself, Chrétien de Troyes, who had ties to both the Templar Knights and the Prieuré de Sion secret society. Unfortuntely, the symbolic meanings for items #13-25 of his "25 Days of Christmas" remains a mystery. Indeed, the items' symbolic meanings are believed to be a secret code known only to Cathars, Templars and members of the Prieuré de Sion.

In the Languedoc region of France, "The 25 Days of Christmas" was sung by Cathar children on the Twelfth Night, the eve of Epiphany (January 6), as a musical memory game. Each each child would endeavor to remember and recite the items that were listed in song by the previous child. If successful, the child would add the next item on the list to his/her verse for the next contestant to recite. If a child couldn't recall all the items sung thus far, he/she dropped out of that round of the game. The song would continue to be sung until there was a winner.

"The 12 Days of Christmas" was exploited by Roman Catholics in like fashion as a competitive musical memory game; however, the tradition never quite caught on because twelve items presented no real challenge for most people to recall in song. Indeed, that Roman Catholics continued the musical-memory-game tradition with "The 12 Days of Christmas" only seems to point to its glaring omission of presenting any real challenge and that they were co-opting the prior tradition of its 25-day Cathar version.

For best enjoyment, sing "The 25 Days of Christmas" as a Game of Forfeits. Players should sit in a row or circle. The first player sings the first verse, the second player the second, etc. Any player who names the wrong gift or can't recall the list of gifts in progress in their proper order would then drops out for the round. The next player continues the song at the verse missed by the player who had to forfeit.

Or, for variation, each player can sing a single verse and adopt its item as his/her own at which he/she will join in singing, almost like singing it in rounds.

Example: How a five-player game would sing "The 25 Days of Christmas" in rounds. The group has gotten up to item #10 on the list of 25 and would thus sing:

Player A: On the 10th day of Christmas, my True Love gave to me: 10 lords a-leaping,

Player B: 9 ladies dancing,

Player C: 8 maids a-milking,

Player D: 7 swans a-swimming,

Player E: 6 geese a-laying,

Player A: 5 golden rings,

Player B: 4 calling birds,

Player C: 3 French hens,

Player D: 2 turtle doves

Player E: And a partridge in a pear tree.


________________________________________



"The 25 Days Of Christmas"
English Version by Unknown
Original French Version by Chrétien de Troyes (?) in 12th-century France

On the first day of Christmas, my true love sent to me
a par-tridge_ in a pear_ tree___ .


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On the second day of Christmas, my true love sent to me
2 turtle doves,
and a par-tridge_ in a pear_ tree___ .


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On the third day of Christmas, my true love sent to me
3 French hens,
2 turtle doves,
and a par-tridge_ in a pear_ tree___ .


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On the fourth day of Christmas, my true love sent to me
4 calling birds,
3 French hens,
2 turtle doves,
and a par-tridge_ in a pear_ tree___ .


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On the fifth day of Christmas, my true love sent to me
5_ gol-den_ rings__ ,
4 calling birds,
3 French hens,
2 turtle doves,
and a par-tridge_ in a pear_ tree___ .


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On the sixth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me
6 geese a-laying,
5_ gol-den_ rings__ ,
4 calling birds,
3 French hens,
2 turtle doves,
and a par-tridge_ in a pear_ tree___ .


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On the seventh day of Christmas, my true love gave to me
7 swans a-swimming,
6 geese a-laying,
5_ gol-den_ rings__ ,
4 calling birds,
3 French hens,
2 turtle doves,
and a par-tridge_ in a pear_ tree___ .


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On the eighth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me
8 maids a-milking,
7 swans a-swimming,
6 geese a-laying,
5_ gol-den_ rings__ ,
4 calling birds,
3 French hens,
2 turtle doves,
and a par-tridge_ in a pear_ tree___ .


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On the ninth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me
9 ladies dancing,
8 maids a-milking,
7 swans a-swimming,
6 geese a-laying,
5_ gol-den_ rings__ ,
4 calling birds,
3 French hens,
2 turtle doves,
and a par-tridge_ in a pear_ tree___ .


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On the tenth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me
10 lords a-leaping,
9 ladies dancing,
8 maids a-milking,
7 swans a-swimming,
6 geese a-laying,
5_ gol-den_ rings__ ,
4 calling birds,
3 French hens,
2 turtle doves,
and a par-tridge_ in a pear_ tree___ .


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On the eleventh day of Christmas, my true love gave to me
11 pipers piping,
10 lords a-leaping,
9 ladies dancing,
8 maids a-milking,
7 swans a-swimming,
6 geese a-laying,
5_ gol-den_ rings__ ,
4 calling birds,
3 French hens,
2 turtle doves,
and a par-tridge_ in a pear_ tree___ .


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On the twelfth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me
12 drummers drumming,
11 pipers piping,
10 lords a-leaping,
9 ladies dancing,
8 maids a-milking,
7 swans a-swimming,
6 geese a-laying,
5_ gol-den_ rings__ ,
4 calling birds,
3 French hens,
2 turtle doves,
and a par-tridge_ in a pear_ tree___ .


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On the 13th day of Christmas, my true love gave to me
13 ponies prancing,
12 drummers drumming,
11 pipers piping,
10 lords a-leaping,
9 ladies dancing,
8 maids a-milking,
7 swans a-swimming,
6 geese a-laying,
5_ gol-den_ rings__ ,
4 calling birds,
3 French hens,
2 turtle doves,
and a par-tridge_ in a pear_ tree___ .


External image





On the 14th day of Christmas, my true love gave to me
14 cockrels crowing,
13 ponies prancing,
12 drummers drumming,
11 pipers piping,
10 lords a-leaping,
9 ladies dancing,
8 maids a-milking,
7 swans a-swimming,
6 geese a-laying,
5_ gol-den_ rings__ ,
4 calling birds,
3 French hens,
2 turtle doves,
and a par-tridge_ in a pear_ tree___ .


External image





On the 15th day of Christmas, my true love gave to me
15 peacocks strutting,
14 cockrels crowing,
13 ponies prancing,
12 drummers drumming,
11 pipers piping,
10 lords a-leaping,
9 ladies dancing,
8 maids a-milking,
7 swans a-swimming,
6 geese a-laying,
5_ gol-den_ rings__ ,
4 calling birds,
3 French hens,
2 turtle doves,
and a par-tridge_ in a pear_ tree___ .


External image





On the 16th day of Christmas, my true love gave to me
16 squires a-fowling,
15 peacocks strutting,
14 cockrels crowing,
13 ponies prancing,
12 drummers drumming,
11 pipers piping,
10 lords a-leaping,
9 ladies dancing,
8 maids a-milking,
7 swans a-swimming,
6 geese a-laying,
5_ gol-den_ rings__ ,
4 calling birds,
3 French hens,
2 turtle doves,
and a par-tridge_ in a pear_ tree___ .


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__________________


*Squires a-fowling: A squire is an attendant and armor-bearer apprenticed to a knight who hopes to become a knight himself one day. Fowling was the sport ofsing trained hawks and falcons to hunt game birds.

___________________




On the 17th day of Christmas, my true love gave to me
17 jugglers juggling,
16 squires a-fowling,
15 peacocks strutting,
14 cockrels crowing,
13 ponies prancing,
12 drummers drumming,
11 pipers piping,
10 lords a-leaping,
9 ladies dancing,
8 maids a-milking,
7 swans a-swimming,
6 geese a-laying,
5_ gol-den_ rings__ ,
4 calling birds,
3 French hens,
2 turtle doves,
and a par-tridge_ in a pear_ tree___ .


External image





On the 18th day of Christmas, my true love gave to me
18 knights a-jousting,
17 jugglers juggling,
16 squires a-fowling,
15 peacocks strutting,
14 cockrels crowing,
13 ponies prancing,
12 drummers drumming,
11 pipers piping,
10 lords a-leaping,
9 ladies dancing,
8 maids a-milking,
7 swans a-swimming,
6 geese a-laying,
5_ gol-den_ rings__ ,
4 calling birds,
3 French hens,
2 turtle doves,
and a par-tridge_ in a pear_ tree___ .


External image





On the 19th day of Christmas, my true love gave to me
19 friars' blessings,
18 knights a-jousting,
17 jugglers juggling,
16 squires a-fowling,
15 peacocks strutting,
14 cockrels crowing,
13 ponies prancing,
12 drummers drumming,
11 pipers piping,
10 lords a-leaping,
9 ladies dancing,
8 maids a-milking,
7 swans a-swimming,
6 geese a-laying,
5_ gol-den_ rings__ ,
4 calling birds,
3 French hens,
2 turtle doves,
and a par-tridge_ in a pear_ tree___ .


External image





On the 20th day of Christmas, my true love gave to me
20 jesters jesting,
19 friars' blessings,
18 knights a-jousting,
17 jugglers juggling,
16 squires a-fowling,
15 peacocks strutting,
14 cockrels crowing,
13 ponies prancing,
12 drummers drumming,
11 pipers piping,
10 lords a-leaping,
9 ladies dancing,
8 maids a-milking,
7 swans a-swimming,
6 geese a-laying,
5_ gol-den_ rings__ ,
4 calling birds,
3 French hens,
2 turtle doves,
and a par-tridge_ in a pear_ tree___ .


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On the 21st day of Christmas, my true love gave to me
21 minstrels singing,
20 jesters jesting,
19 friars' blessings,
18 knights a-jousting,
17 jugglers juggling,
16 squires a-fowling,
15 peacocks strutting,
14 cockrels crowing,
13 ponies prancing,
12 drummers drumming,
11 pipers piping,
10 lords a-leaping,
9 ladies dancing,
8 maids a-milking,
7 swans a-swimming,
6 geese a-laying,
5_ gol-den_ rings__ ,
4 calling birds,
3 French hens,
2 turtle doves,
and a par-tridge_ in a pear_ tree___ .


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On the 22nd day of Christmas, my true love gave to me
22 Yule logs blazing,
21 minstrels singing,
20 jesters jesting,
19 friars' blessings,
18 knights a-jousting,
17 jugglers juggling,
16 squires a-fowling,
15 peacocks strutting,
14 cockrels crowing,
13 ponies prancing,
12 drummers drumming,
11 pipers piping,
10 lords a-leaping,
9 ladies dancing,
8 maids a-milking,
7 swans a-swimming,
6 geese a-laying,
5_ gol-den_ rings__ ,
4 calling birds,
3 French hens,
2 turtle doves,
and a par-tridge_ in a pear_ tree___ .


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________________________________________



The Yule Log, Yule Clog, or Christmas Block is a specially selected log burnt on a hearth around the period of Christmas in the Anglosphere. The origin of the folk custom is unclear. Numerous scholars have observed that, like other traditions associated with Yule (such as the Yule boar), the custom may ultimately derive from Germanic paganism. Similar folk practices are recorded in various areas of Europe. The Yule log is generally given, and is at once put on the hearth. It's considered unlucky to have to light it again after it has once been started, and it ought not go out until it has burned away. To sit around the Yule log and tell ghost stories was a great thing to do on this night as well as playing cards. Just before supper on Christmas Eve (where Furmety is eaten), while the Yule log is burning, all other lights are put out, and candles are lit from the Yule log by the youngest person present. While they are being lighted, all are silent and wish. The wish must not be told so that it will be fulfilled during the coming year. As soon as the candles are set on the table, the silence may be broken. Like the Yule Log, the candles must be allowed to burn themselves out, and no other lights may be lit that night.


________________________________________




On the 23rd day of Christmas, my true love gave to me
23 Christmas puddings,
22 Yule logs blazing,
21 minstrels singing,
20 jesters jesting,
19 friars' blessings,
18 knights a-jousting,
17 jugglers juggling,
16 squires a-fowling,
15 peacocks strutting,
14 cockrels crowing,
13 ponies prancing,
12 drummers drumming,
11 pipers piping,
10 lords a-leaping,
9 ladies dancing,
8 maids a-milking,
7 swans a-swimming,
6 geese a-laying,
5_ gol-den_ rings__ ,
4 calling birds,
3 French hens,
2 turtle doves,
and a par-tridge_ in a pear_ tree____.


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________________________________________



Christmas Pudding is a type of pudding traditionally served as part of the Christmas dinner. It has its origins in medieval England, and is sometimes known as plum pudding or just "pud", though this can also refer to other kinds of boiled pudding involving dried fruit. Despite the name "plum pudding," the pudding contains no actual plums due to the pre-Victorian use of the word "plums" as a term for raisins. The pudding is composed of many dried fruits held together by egg and suet, sometimes moistened by treacle or molasses and flavoured with cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, ginger, and other spices. The pudding is aged for a month or even a year; the high alcohol content of the pudding prevents it from spoiling during this time. There is a popular myth that plum pudding's association with Christmas goes back to a custom in medieval England that the "pudding should be made on the 25th Sunday after Trinity, that it be prepared with 13 ingredients to represent Christ and the 12 apostles, and that every family member stir it in turn from east to west to honour the Magi and their supposed journey in that direction."


________________________________________




On the 24th day of Christmas, my true love gave to me
24 bowls o' wassail,
23 Christmas puddings,
22 Yule logs blazing,
21 minstrels singing,
20 jesters jesting,
19 friars' blessings,
18 knights a-jousting,
17 jugglers juggling,
16 squires a-fowling,
15 peacocks strutting,
14 cockrels crowing,
13 ponies prancing,
12 drummers drumming,
11 pipers piping,
10 lords a-leaping,
9 ladies dancing,
8 maids a-milking,
7 swans a-swimming,
6 geese a-laying,
5_ gol-den_ rings__ ,
4 calling birds,
3 French hens,
2 turtle doves,
and a par-tridge_ in a pear_ tree___ .


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________________________________________



Wassail refers both to the salutatory greeting, "Waes Hail" (May you be healthy) and to the drink of wassail, a hot mulled cider traditionally drunk as an integral part of wassailing, a medieval southern English drinking ritual intended to ensure a good cider apple harvest the following year. Wassail the beverage is a hot, mulled punch often associated with Yuletide drunk from a Wassailing Bowl. The earliest versions were warmed mead - ale brewed with honey - into which roasted crab apples were dropped and burst to create a drink called Lambswool drunk on Lammas Day still known in Shakespeare's time. Later, the drink evolved to become a mulled cider made with sugar, cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg and topped with slices of toast drunk from a large communal bowl. Great bowls turned from wood, pottery or tin often had many handles for shared drinking and highly decorated lids, antique examples can still be found in traditional pubs.







On the 25th day of Christmas, my true love gave to me
25 boar's heads roasting
24 bowls o' wassail,
23 Christmas puddings,
22 Yule logs blazing,
21 minstrels singing,
20 jesters jesting,
19 friars' blessings,
18 knights a-jousting,
17 jugglers juggling,
16 squires a-fowling,
15 peacocks strutting,
14 cockrels crowing,
13 ponies prancing,
12 drummers drumming,
11 pipers piping,
10 lords a-leaping,
9 ladies dancing,
8 maids a-milking,
7 swans a-swimming,
6 geese a-laying,
5_ gol-den_ rings__ ,
4 calling birds,
3 French hens,
2 turtle doves,
and a par-tridge_ in a pear_ tree___ .



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________________________________________



The Boar's Head Feast is probably the oldest continuing festival of the Christmas season. This pageant is rooted in ancient times when the boar was sovereign of the forest. A ferocious beast, and menace to humans, it was hunted as a public enemy. At Roman feasts, boar was the first dish served.[citation needed] Roasted boar was a staple of medieval banquets. As Christian beliefs overtook pagan customs in Europe, the presentation of a boar's head at Christmas came to symbolize the triumph of the Christ Child over sin. From the beginning, certain traditions have shaped the Boar's Head Feast. Every aspect must be authentic to the 14th century. A church service must be always be directly involved. The feast usually takes place during the Twelve Days of Christmas.






 
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3. Board Game: 18Scan [Average Rating:7.40 Overall Rank:3938]
 Missing Image
James King
United States
North Central Louisiana / No Longer A Resident of the Shreveport/Bossier City Area
Louisiana
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“Above The Northern Lights”
Performed by David Archuleta


 
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4. Board Game: Agricola: All Creatures Big and Small [Average Rating:7.39 Overall Rank:254]
Board Game: Agricola: All Creatures Big and Small
James King
United States
North Central Louisiana / No Longer A Resident of the Shreveport/Bossier City Area
Louisiana
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“The Friendly Beasts”
Performed by Brian Stokes Mitchell & the Mormon Tabernacle Choir






“The Friendly Beasts”
Performed by Peter, Paul & Mary



 
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5. Board Game: Ave [Average Rating:6.40 Unranked]
Board Game: Ave
James King
United States
North Central Louisiana / No Longer A Resident of the Shreveport/Bossier City Area
Louisiana
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"Ave Maria"
Bach-Gounod Version*
Performed by David Archuleta







__________________

*Thanks go to Julius Andrikonis (Juliusan) for clarifying its version.


 
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6. Board Game: Axis & Allies: Battle of the Bulge [Average Rating:6.74 Overall Rank:2942]
Board Game: Axis & Allies: Battle of the Bulge
James King
United States
North Central Louisiana / No Longer A Resident of the Shreveport/Bossier City Area
Louisiana
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Regardless of whether the original Christmas Truce of 1914 became widely known or not, it nonetheless set a precedent that would be revisited decades later on much, much smaller scales high over the skies of Germany and at ground level in the Ardeinnes Forest of France.

Four days before Christmas 1943 in the darkest hours of World War II, a miracle took place when an American bomber pilot and a German fighter ace met in combat over Germany and did the unexpected.











A year later on Christmas Eve 1944 in the Ardennes Forest in France while the Battle of the Bulge raged on around them, a German mother, Elisabeth Vincken, and her son Fritz would have some very unusual Christmas visitors. Although Fritz first told his story to Reader's Digest in 1973, it became much more widely known after the "Unsolved Mysteries" TV series featured it in the early 1990s.

As a prologue to that segment, I present an excerpt from an account written by the grown-up Fritz Vincken....


"Truce In the Forest"
by Fritz Vincken

It was Christmas Eve, and the last, desperate German offensive of World War II raged around our tiny cabin.

Suddenly, there was a knock on the door... .

When we heard the knock on our door that Christmas Eve of 1944, neither Mother nor I had the slightest inkling of the quiet miracle that lay in store for us.

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I was 12 then, and we were living in a small cottage in the Hürtgen Forest, near the German-Belgian border. Father had stayed at the cottage on hunting weekends before the war; when Allied bombers partly destroyed our hometown of Aachen, he sent us to live there. He had been ordered into the civil-defense fire guard in the border town of Monschau, four miles away.

"You'll be safe in the woods," he had told me. "Take care of Mother. Now, you're the man of the family."

But, nine days before Christmas, Field Marshal von Rundstedt had launched the last, desperate German offensive of the war, and now, as I went to the door, the Battle of the Bulge was raging all around us. We heard the incessant booming of field guns; planes soared continuously overhead; at night, searchlights stabbed through the darkness. Thousands of Allied and German soldiers were fighting and dying nearby.

When that first knock at our cabin door came on Christmas Eve, Mother quickly blew out the candles; then, as I went to answer it, she stepped ahead of me and pushed open the door. Outside, like phantoms against the snow-clad trees, stood two steel-helmeted men.....







Fritz Vincken's story was later made into the Hallmark Hall of Fame movie, "Silent Night" starring Linda Hamilton.


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Fritz Vincken tried to find all seven of the American soldiers after the war. However, it wasn't until several years later after his story was repeated on a March 1995 rerun of "Unsolved Mysteries" that Vincken learned about a man at Northampton Manor Nursing Home in Frederick, Maryland who had been telling family and friends that same story for years.


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In January 1996, Vincken went to Maryland to meet Ralph Blank, who had served with the 121st Infantry, 8th Division, during World War II. "When he told me, 'Your mother saved my life,' it was the high point of the life," Vincken said of the reunion. "Now, I can die in peace. My mother's courage won't be forgotten and it shows what Goodwill will do."

Throughout her life, Fritz's mother, Elisabeth Vincken, had often said, "God was at our table" when she talked about that fateful Christmas Eve of 1944 in the Ardennes Forest.

Although he did eventually locate one other surviving American soldier, Fritz Vincken died in December 8, 2002 at age 69 in Oregon, 16 days before the 57th anniversary of his well-publicized Christmas story of "The Night God Came To Dinner" featured in the anthology book, "Chicken Soup from the Soul of Hawai'i", which can be read at: http://divinemercyhawaii.org/testimonials-the-night-god-came...

(The inclusion of Fritz Vincken's story in "Chicken Soup from the Soul of Hawai'i" was all the more appropriate since it was indeed chicken soup that his mother had served him and the American & German soldiers on Christmas Eve 1944. Moreover, Vincken's mother had in essence also served up chicken soup for their souls that night in insisting upon the soldiers to cease hostilities and engaging them to yield to their better angels in observance of that holy night.)

Vincken, who was born in Aachem, Germany, was survived by his wife, Erna, a daughter, and two grandchildren.


External image



 
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7. Board Game: Axis & Allies: WWI 1914 [Average Rating:7.27 Overall Rank:2406]
Board Game: Axis & Allies: WWI 1914
James King
United States
North Central Louisiana / No Longer A Resident of the Shreveport/Bossier City Area
Louisiana
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"1914: The Carol Of Christmas"
By the British Military Voices singing troupe
Benefitting the Royal Air Force Benevolent Fund






Ooooo_____ .
Ooooo_____ .
Ooooo_____ .
Ooooo______.

It was Christ-mas night__ on a bat-tleground_ ;
Every wear-y man_ laid his ri-fle down_ ;
Through the burn-ing mist_
you could hear_ the sound_
of a ca-rol sung_ on a bat-tleground__ .

Oooooo____ . (Si-lent night__ , ho-ly night___)
Oooooo____ .

And Love__, one life_ , one sto-ry, one song__
came_ to the Earth____.

Can you hear_ the echo of a mil-lion souls___? (Oooooo____ .)

All_ the tears of a hundred years__? (Oooooo____ .)

For every tear_ that_ falls__ , a flow-er_ grows___ ,
and we_ will_ remem-__ ber them___ .

It was Christ-mas Day__ on a bat-tleground__ : (Oooooo____ .)
All the drums_ of war_ once again_ resound__ ; (Oooooo____ .)
Every si-lent song__ lying all_ around__ : (Oooooo____ .)
Where is Vic-tory__ on this bat-tleground____?

And Love__ , one life_ , one sto-ry, one song__
brings peace_ to the Earth___ .

Can you hear_ the echo of a mil-lion souls___? (Oooooo____ .)

All_ the tears of a hun-dred_ years___? (Oooooo____ .)

For every tear_ that_ falls___ , a flow-er_ grows__ ,
and we_ will_ remem-__ ber them___ .

Kyrie elei-_son*__ , kyrie elei-_son___. (We_ will_ remem-__ber them___)
Kyrie elei-_son__ , (One life_, one sto-ry, one song__) (We will remem-__ber them___)
Kyrie elei-_son__ , kyrie elei-_son___ ;
We_ will_ remem-___ ber them______ .



____________________

*Kyrie eleison is the way the Greek expression "Κύριε ἐλέησον" is written phonetically in English and is used in Christian liturgy, meaning "Lord, have mercy."



Behind The Making of "The Carol Of Christmas"







A new version of the classic carol "Silent Night" entitled "Silent Night (Christ The Savior Is Born)" has been recorded respectively by multiplatinum-selling opera tenor Paul Potts and singer Faye Streek with a new verse and bridge chorus written by song writers Ben Cantelon and Nick Herbert.

The songwriters were commissioned by HOPE Together and Integrity Music to compose the new verses. The aim was to bring it alive again for a new generation of people and to play a part in this year’s commemoration of World War I and the 1914 Christmas Truce. Through the release of this charity single and the Silent Night Carols events in hundreds of stadiums, churches and cathedrals across the Britain,HOPE Together linked with the charity Tearfund to help bring hope to those affected by the war in Syria particularly among women and children and The Royal British Legion in their work around the world.



"Silent Night (Christ The Savior Is Born)"
Sung by Faye Streek
Note: The new verse and bridge chorus are italicized.






Si-lent night__, ho-ly night__ :
All_ is calm_, all_ is bright_ ;
Round_ yon vir-gin mother and Child_ ,
Ho-ly Infant, so tender and mild_ ;
Sleep_ in Hea-venly peace__ ;
Sleep in Hea-venly peace__ .

Si-lent night__, ho-ly night__ :
Shep-herds quake_ at_ the sight_ ;
Glo-ries stream_ from Hea-ven above_ ;
Hea-venly hosts_ sing,_ "Al-leluia_ !"
Christ_ the Sa-vior is born___ ;
Christ__ the Sa-vior is born____ .

Christ the Savior_ ,
Christ the Savior is born____!
Peace_ and Hope_ have come_
through Jesus Christ, the Son____ .

Christ the Savior_ ,
Christ the Savior is born____ !
Peace_ and Hope_ have come__
through Jesus Christ, the Son___ .

Si-lent night__, ho-ly night__ :
God's_ great love_ gi-ving life_ ;
Let_ the world_ toge-ther rejoice_ ,
sing_ fore-_ver with_ one voice__ :
Hea-_ven's Hope_ is here____ !
Hea-ven's Hope_ is here___ !

Christ the Savior_ ,
Christ the Savior is born____ !
Peace_ and Hope_ have come___
through Jesus Christ, the Son____ .

Christ the Savior_ ,
Christ the Savior is born____ !
Peace_ and Hope_ have come___
through Jesus Christ, the Son____ .


Si-lent night_, ho-ly night__ :
Son_ of God__ , Love’s_ pure light_ ;
Ra-diant beams_ from Thy_ holy face__
with_ the dawn_ of redeem-_ing grace_ ;
Je-_sus, Lord_ , at Thy birth____ ;
Je_-sus, Lord_ , at Thy_ birth____ .....




"Silent Night (Christ The Savior Is Born)"
Sung by opera singer Paul Potts, winner of the first "Britain's Got Talent" competition (2007)








Songwriters Ben Cantelon & Nick Herbert share the story behind their composition of the new verse and bridge chorus for the new "Silent Night (Christ The Savior Is Born)" carol.







Karaoke Sing-Along Accompaniment Music for "Silent Night (Christ The Savior Is Born)"







"Silent Night, Holy Night: The 1914 Christmas Truce"
Narrated by former CBS newsman & anchor Walter Cronkite and sung by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir







" The Christmas Truce"







"Peace in No Man's Land: The Christmas Truce"
Produced by the BBC






 
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8. Board Game: Be an Angel [Average Rating:0.00 Unranked]
Board Game: Be an Angel
James King
United States
North Central Louisiana / No Longer A Resident of the Shreveport/Bossier City Area
Louisiana
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“Angels from the Realms of Glory”
by David Archuletta & the Mormon Tabernacle Choir







“Angels We Have Heard On High”
Performed by David Archuleta







“Angels We Have Heard On High”
By Percy Faith & His Orchestra



 
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9. Board Game: Beethoven's 2nd [Average Rating:3.50 Unranked]
Board Game: Beethoven's 2nd
James King
United States
North Central Louisiana / No Longer A Resident of the Shreveport/Bossier City Area
Louisiana
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“A Song of Joy” (English Version)
Performed by Miguel Rios to the tune of Beethoven’s classic “Ode To Joy” symphony






“Himno A La Alegria” (Spanish Version)
Performed by Miguel Rios







“Himno A La Alegria”
Sing-A-Long Version in Spanish





 
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10. Board Game: Carcassonne: Winter Edition [Average Rating:7.50 Overall Rank:984]
Board Game: Carcassonne: Winter Edition
James King
United States
North Central Louisiana / No Longer A Resident of the Shreveport/Bossier City Area
Louisiana
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“In the Bleak Midwinter”
Performed by Sissel & the Mormon Tabernacle Choir


 
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11. Board Game: Cat & Mouse [Average Rating:4.90 Overall Rank:19032]
Board Game: Cat & Mouse
James King
United States
North Central Louisiana / No Longer A Resident of the Shreveport/Bossier City Area
Louisiana
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The Cat & The Mouse Carol
Performed by David Archuletta & the Mormon Tabernacle Choir






 
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12. Board Game: A Charlie Brown Christmas [Average Rating:4.69 Unranked]
Board Game: A Charlie Brown Christmas
James King
United States
North Central Louisiana / No Longer A Resident of the Shreveport/Bossier City Area
Louisiana
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"Christmastime Is Here"
Performed by the Peanuts Gang in "A Charlie Brown Christmas"







"Christmastime Is Here"
Performed by Sarah McLachlan & featuring Diana Krall





 
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13. Board Game: A Christmas Carol [Average Rating:5.00 Unranked]
Board Game: A Christmas Carol
James King
United States
North Central Louisiana / No Longer A Resident of the Shreveport/Bossier City Area
Louisiana
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Four movies, one animated Christmas TV special, and one Broadway musical contributed new Christmas carols inspired by Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol", most of them centered around Tiny Tim's "God bless us, every one!" line.

A free downloadable e-book of Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol" is available at: http://www.abbottepub.com/AChristmasCarol_AbbottePublishing....



External image










“A Christmas Carol” (1970) starring Albert Finney











"Sing A Christmas Carol"
from the 2011 British stage musical production of "Scrooge" (based on the 1970 film musical)
Downloadable sing-along sheet music at: http://carolingauditions.com/singaccarol.cb.pdf


Sing a song of gladness and cheer___ (Sing of gladness and cheer!)
for the time of Christmas is here___! (It's here___
Look around about you_ and see__ (Look around and see)
what a world of wonder_this world_ can be_!

Sing a Christmas carol__
Sing a Christmas ca-rol__
Sing a Christmas ca-rol__
like the children do_

And enjoy and beauty_,
all the joy and beauty_
that a merry Christmas can bring_ to_ you___!....

Sing a song of gladness and cheer___
for the time of Christmas is here___!
Look around about you_ and see____
what a world of wonder_ this world_ can be____

And enjoy the beauty_,
all the joy and beauty_
that a merry Christmas can_ bring_ to___ you______!






External image








God Bless Us, Every One
The Theme Song by Nick Bicat & lyrics by Tony Bicat from the Classic 1984 Version of “A Christmas Carol” starring George C. Scott
(Special Note: When you hear Scrooge's watch chime on the hour in the film, you'll also hear it chime the opening notes from this song. In the following video taken from the end titles, the song lyrics appear on-screen and refer to the metamorphis and transformation of Scrooge the man: past, present and future.)






The Past of Man was cold as ice:
He would not mend his ways__ ;
He strove for silver in his heart
and gold in all his days__.

His reason weak, his anger sharp,
and sorrow all his pay__,
he went to church but once a year
and that was Christmas Day__.

The Present Man is full of flame:
He rushes here and there__;
He turns away the orphan child,
the widow in her chair__.

He trades for them believing each
forgets how brief his stay__
and stands a-jingling of his coin
in church on Christmas Day_.

So grant us all a change of heart,
Rejoice for Mary’s son__!
Pray Peace on Earth to all Mankind,
God bless us, every one__!


The Man To Come we do not know:
May he make Peace on Earth__
and live the glory of the Word,
the message of the Birth__,

And gather all the children in
to banish their dismay__,
lift up his heart among the bells
in church on Christmas Day__!

So grant us all a change of heart;
Rejoice for Mary’s son__!
Pray Peace on Earth to all Mankind,
God bless us, every one__!

Pray Peace on Earth to all Mankind;
God bless_ us_, e-very_ one________!






"God Bless Us Everyone"
Tim Curry sings with the cast of the 2001 Broadway production of the "Christmas Carol" stage musical at Macy's Square during the 75th Annual Macy's Thanksgiving Parade





Let_ the_ stars in the sky_
remind us of man’s compas_-sion_;
Let_ us_ love till we die_
and God bless us every one____.

In_ your_ heart there’s a light_
as bright as a star in Hea-ven_;
Let_ it_ shine through the night_
and God bless us every one____.

Till_ each_ child is fed_ ,
till_ all_ men are free_ ,
till_ the_ world becomes a fa_-m'ly__,

Star_ by_ star up above
and kindness by human kind-ness_ ,
light_ this_ world with your life
and God_ bless us_ e_very_ one___!

God_ bless us_ e[_very_ one_____!






"God Bless Us Everyone"
Music by Alan Silvestri & performed by Andrea Bocelli
From the Disney computer-animated "Christmas Carol"








"A Christmas Carol" (Audiobook) by Charles Dickens







Most Recommended Version of Dicken's "A Christmas Carol" To Read

External image


What would Christmas be without A Christmas Carol? Charles Dickens’s famous ghost story is as much a part of the season as plum pudding and mistletoe, and Michael Patrick Hearn, the celebrated annotator of "The Wizard of Oz" and "The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn", has prepared this sumptuous, thoroughly annotated edition, which has already become the definitive edition of our century. Initially published by Norton in 2004, this is the first edition to combine the original story with Dickens’s Public Reading text, published to coincide with his 1867-68 American tour, which has not been reprinted in nearly a century. Included are rare photographs as well as the original Leech wood engravings and hand-colored etchings, supplemented by other contemporary illustrations by George Cruikshank, Gustave Doré, John Tenniel, and “Phiz.” "The Annotated Christmas Carol" will be a literary feast for the whole family for generations. It also has 100 black-and-white illustrations, and 8 pages of full color.



 
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14. Board Game: A Christmas Carol [Average Rating:5.00 Unranked]
Board Game: A Christmas Carol
James King
United States
North Central Louisiana / No Longer A Resident of the Shreveport/Bossier City Area
Louisiana
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"Rich Little's Christmas Carol" is a 1979 TV special that ran on HBO and starred Rich Little in a virtuoso one-man performance of his dead-on impersonations of Hollywood stars and other celebrities playing roles in Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol" with: W. C. Fields as Ebenezer Scrooge; Paul Lynde (Uncle Arthur of TV's "Bewitched") as Bob Cratchit; Jeanne Stapleton as Edith Bunker (of TV's "All In The Family") as Mrs. Cratchit; author Truman Capote as Tiny Tim; Johnny Carson as Scrooge's nephew Fred; Laurel & Hardy as the Christmas charity philanthropists; President Richard Nixon as Jacob Marley, Scrooge's late business partner; Humphrey Bogart as the Ghost of Christmas Past; Groucho Marx as Scrooge's first boss, Mr. Fezziwig; Jimmy Stewart as Scrooge's fellow co-worker Dick Wilkins; Peter Falk as his TV detective character Columbo as the Ghost of Christmas Present; Peter Sellers as Inspector Clouseau (from the "Pink Panther" movies) as the Ghost of Christmas Yet-To-Come; James Mason, George Burns, and John Wayne as the three businessmen; and Jack Benny as a boy.


"Rich Little's Christmas Carol" Part 1





Part 2





Part 3





Part 4






Part 5






Part 6







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15. Board Game: The Christmas Game [Average Rating:4.29 Overall Rank:18286]
Board Game: The Christmas Game
James King
United States
North Central Louisiana / No Longer A Resident of the Shreveport/Bossier City Area
Louisiana
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Merry Christmas, Possums, From That High-Society Celebrity Wonder From Down Under!
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It's a Dame Edna Everage Christmas!



Dame Edna Encourages Guest Roger Moore (James Bond 007) To Launch His Own Celebrity Line Of Food Products
From Dame Edna Everage's 1987 Christmas Special







Dame Edna Conjures Up Both A Christmas Present And A Bit Of Nostalgia For Guest Roger Moore (James Bond 007)
From Dame Edna Everage's 1987 Christmas Special





"One More Audience With Dame Edna Everage"
Her classic 1988 Sharing & Healing Christmas Special (following the tragic death of her husband, Norm)








"Spooky Christmas"
Dame Edna Everage's One & Only Hit Christmas Song








Dame Edna Everage's Christmastime 2010 Appearance on "The Michael Parkinson Show" (Part 1)








Dame Edna Everage's Christmastime 2010 Appearance on "The Michael Parkinson Show" (Part 2)








Dame Edna Everage Switches on the 2013 Christmas Lights at Stella McCartney's Fashion Boutique in London





 
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16. Board Game: A Christmas Story Board Game [Average Rating:2.47 Unranked]
Board Game: A Christmas Story Board Game
James King
United States
North Central Louisiana / No Longer A Resident of the Shreveport/Bossier City Area
Louisiana
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“Christmas Serenade”
By Johnny Maestro & The Brooklyn Bridge



 
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17. Board Game: Christmas Tree [Average Rating:2.00 Unranked]
Board Game: Christmas Tree
James King
United States
North Central Louisiana / No Longer A Resident of the Shreveport/Bossier City Area
Louisiana
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"The House Without A Christmas Tree" Part 1






Part 2






Part 3






Part 4






Part 5






Part 6






Part 7





 
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18. Board Game: Christmas-in-a-Box [Average Rating:6.50 Unranked]
Board Game: Christmas-in-a-Box
James King
United States
North Central Louisiana / No Longer A Resident of the Shreveport/Bossier City Area
Louisiana
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The History of Christmas
































Recommended Non-Fiction Books About The History Of Christmas

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This informative gift book is much better than its introduction might lead readers to suspect: Maier lays out a traditional Christian apologetic approach, using tools such as archaeology and history to prove the trustworthiness of the Bible. In the chapters that follow, he analyzes the Nativity through the lenses of economics, law, literature, geography and even meteorology, claiming that this composite reveals the "unfamiliar story" of Christ's birth. Some readers may quibble that Maier bases his claims on a rather selective reading of the evidence, but most will enjoy the rich detail he offers about daily life in Palestine around the year 5 B.C.



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In this classic travel narrative, journalist Paul Williams Roberts visits the Middle East to trace the Magi's legendary journey through Iran, Iraq, Syria, and Jordan to Bethlehem. Chasing clues from Marco Polo's Travels and the Dead Sea Scrolls to the stories of King Solomon and the Crusader Knights, Roberts seeks the historical truth behind Matthew's account in the New Testament. Filled with encounters with eclectic characters, from smugglers to Zoroastrian priests, "The Journey of the Magi" is the story of an extraordinary adventure and an illuminating voyage of discovery into the truth behind the Magi and the birth of Jesus. This latest edition includes a new introduction by Roberts.



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The tale of the Magi, or the Three Wise Men, is one of the most famous stories associated with the birth of Jesus. But as Landau points out, only one brief passage in the New Testament’s Gospel of Matthew is actually about the Magi. Even there the details are frustratingly vague: the wise men have no names, nor are their countries of origin indicated. But one source does exist, a lengthy narrative called "The Revelation of the Magi" which tells the story from the perspective of the wise men themselves. This slim volume is purported to be the first-ever English translation of the elusive tale. Landau, a scholar of ancient biblical languages, discovered the document while doing research at the Vatican Library. Ignored or neglected by contemporary scholars and written in Syriac, a language spoken by ancient Christians in the Middle East and Asia, Revelation of the Magi should be of interest to not only biblical scholars but also students of the Christian story who want to know more about these elusive fellows.



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Anyone who laments the excesses of Christmas might consider the Puritans of colonial Massachusetts: they simply outlawed the holiday. The Puritans had their reasons, since Christmas was once an occasion for drunkenness and riot, when poor "wassailers" extorted food and drink from the well-to-do as was the tradition in England and Europe. In this intriguing and innovative work of social history, Stephen Nissenbaum rediscovers Christmas's carnival origins and shows how it was transformed, during the nineteenth century, into a festival of domesticity and consumerism in America and England.

Drawing on a wealth of period documents and illustrations, Nissenbaum charts the invention of our current Yuletide traditions, from St. Nicholas to the Christmas tree and, perhaps most radically, the practice of giving gifts to children. Bursting with detail, filled with inspirationally influential readings of such seasonal classics as "A Visit from St. Nicholas" and "A Christmas Carol" and their historical social effect through the decades, "The Battle for Christmas" captures the glorious strangeness of the past even as it helps us better understand our present.


 
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19. Board Game: Cringle Bells [Average Rating:4.00 Unranked]
Board Game: Cringle Bells
James King
United States
North Central Louisiana / No Longer A Resident of the Shreveport/Bossier City Area
Louisiana
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“The Bells of Christmas”
Performed by Julie Andrews



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20. Board Game: Crown of Roses [Average Rating:6.56 Overall Rank:5921]
Board Game: Crown of Roses
James King
United States
North Central Louisiana / No Longer A Resident of the Shreveport/Bossier City Area
Louisiana
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“Lo, How A Rose E’er Blooming”
Performed by Renee Fleming & the Mormon Tabernacle Choir







“Lo, How A Rose E’er Blooming”
Performed by Percy Faith &U His Orchestra




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21. Board Game: A Dog's Life [Average Rating:5.52 Overall Rank:16266]
Board Game: A Dog's Life
James King
United States
North Central Louisiana / No Longer A Resident of the Shreveport/Bossier City Area
Louisiana
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"Jingle Bells"
Classic Carol by the Barking Dogs



 
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22. Board Game: Drummer Boy [Average Rating:0.00 Unranked]
Board Game: Drummer Boy
James King
United States
North Central Louisiana / No Longer A Resident of the Shreveport/Bossier City Area
Louisiana
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"The Little Drummer Boy"
Performed by the Harry Simeone Chorale







“The Little Drummer Boy (Peace On Earth)”
Performed by Bing Crosby & David Bowie







“El Pequeno Tamborilero”
Spanish Version of "The Little Drummer Boy"
Performed by David Archuleta
Lyrics provided at: http://www.quedeletras.com/letra-cancion-el-pequeno-tamboril...




 
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23. Board Game: Ebenezer Scrooge's Eggnog Dash [Average Rating:2.00 Unranked]
Board Game: Ebenezer Scrooge's Eggnog Dash
James King
United States
North Central Louisiana / No Longer A Resident of the Shreveport/Bossier City Area
Louisiana
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It's time to grow misty-eyed, maudlinly nostalgic, and weepily over-sentimental about ...


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David Letterman's classic 1984 "Christmas with the Lettermans" holiday special with his family and special guests Pat Boone, Brother Theodore, and the Doodletown Pipers







Highlights from the 1987 edition of "[b]Christmas with the Lettermans"







David Letterman's Christmas Record Collection







"A David Letterman Charlie Brown Christmas"







David Letterman's Top Six "Top 10" Christmas Lists


Top 10 Least Popular Christmas Carols of 1995







Paul Schaeffer Does His Classic Annual Impersonation of Cher Singing "O' Holy Night" (2010)







Top 10 Christmas Songs For 2013







Musical Retrospective of Darlene Love Singing Her Classic "Christmas (Baby, Please Come Home!)" Song on "The Late Show with David Letterman" Through The Years

*Note: When he was working as a disc jockey in college and had to work over the holidays at an Indiana radio station, David Letterman has often said his spirits were lifted and brightened by Darlene Love's rendition of "Christmas (Baby, Please Come Home!)", which he considers the greatest modern Christmas song ever recorded. Years later, Letterman was reminded about Love when he listened in as his band leader Paul Schaeffer was rehearsing with Darlene on a separate concert/musical in 1986. That led to Love's first invitation to perform her classic song that Christmas and 28 annual performances later, Darlene performed it for the last time on nationwide television on Letterman's final Christmas show on Friday night, Dec. 19, 2014.






 
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24. Board Game: The ElfQuest Boardgame [Average Rating:5.06 Overall Rank:17860]
Board Game: The ElfQuest Boardgame
James King
United States
North Central Louisiana / No Longer A Resident of the Shreveport/Bossier City Area
Louisiana
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"What Does the Elf Say?" by Jared O. of YouTube.com
Sung to the tune of "What Does The Fox Say?" by Ylvis






Kids React To Video Footage Of Nocturnal Visit Of The Elf On The Shelf To Their Bedroom






"What Does the Elf Say?" by Matt Moody of YouTube.com
Sung to the tune of "What Does The Fox Say?" by Ylvis






Newspaper Office Security Cameras Catch Elf On The Shelf In Action!







"What Does the Elf Say?" by The Jaybirds of YouTube.com
Sung to the tune of "What Does The Fox Say?" by Ylvis






Evil Elf On The Shelf devil






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25. Board Game: Factory Fun [Average Rating:6.82 Overall Rank:1118]
Board Game: Factory Fun
James King
United States
North Central Louisiana / No Longer A Resident of the Shreveport/Bossier City Area
Louisiana
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The Greatest Novelty Songs Of Christmas


"Hey, Santa!" by Carnie & Wendy Wilson








"I Want A Hippopotamus For Christmas" by Gayla Peevey








"Christmas At Ground Zero" by Weird Al Yankovic








"All I Want For Christmas Is My Two Front Teeth" by Spike Jones








"Santa Claus Is Watchin' You!" by Ray Stevens








"I'm Gettin' Nuttin' For Christmas!" by Stan Freberg








"Chimney Intruder (Hide your Gifts!)" by Antoine Dodson of "Bedroom Intruder" fame








"Monsters' Holiday" by Bobby "Boris" Pickett & The Cryptkeepers








"Mr. Hankey The Christmas Poo" by The South Park Gang









"Snoopy's Christmas" by The Royal Guardsmen








"Grandma Got Run over by a Reindeer" by Elmo & Patsy








"Here We Come A-Wassailing" (The American Edition) by Samuel Stokesby








"Blue Christmas" by Seymour Swine & The Squealers






 
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