Thursday, 2 December 2010

Dec 2nd The Holly King

The actual origin of holly as a unique Christmas decoration may date back to Celtic times. Celtic myths refer to two figures, the Holly King and the Oak King. The holly king ruled from the summer solstice to the winter solstice. At the winter solstice, the oak king fought and defeated the holly king, thus bringing the new cycle of spring and summer fertility forward again into the new year. The Holly King was depicted as a big man decked in green and carrying a large staff of holly. Many portrayals of Charles Dickens' Ghost of Christmas Past on the silver screen are eerily reminiscent of the ancient Holly King, including a crown of holly and a holly staff, club or wand carried in the King's right hand.

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