Thirty years after the first recorded Christmas, "
"in the fourth century, the Pope was already "
"warning that too many people were spending "
"the day not in worship, but dancing and eating "
"to excess. By 1616, the playwright Ben Jonson "
"was nostalgically recalling the Christmas of the "
"old days, certain that they had been better then. "
"Food, drink and nostalgia for Christmases past "
"seem to be almost as old as the holiday itself, "
"with other aspects of the celebrations newer "
"than we might realise - wrapping-paper was "
"unknown before the twentieth century. "
"Christmas has been all things to all people: a "
"religious festival, a family celebration, a period "
"of eating and drinking. In this event acclaimed "
"social historian and best-selling author Judith "
"Flanders casts a revealing eye on the myths, "
"legends and history of the season, from the "
"origins of the holiday in the Roman empire to "
"the emergence of Christmas trees in central "
"Europe, to draw a picture of the season as it has never been seen before.
Salon, York House
Richmond Road Twickenham
22/11/2017 7:00 PM
22/11/2017 8:30 PM
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Judith Flanders is the author of the bestselling The Victorian House: Domestic Life from Childbirth to Deathbed(2003); A Circle of Sisters (2001), which was nominated for the Guardian First Book Award; the New York Timesbestselling The Invention of Murder (2001), shortlisted for the CWA Gold Dagger for Non-fiction; The Victorian City: Everyday Life in Dickens’ London (2012), shortlisted for the Los Angeles Times History Book of the Year; and The Making of Home (2014). She is also the author of Christmas: A Biography (2017). In her copious leisure time, she also writes the Sam Clair series of comic crime novels.