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Question: In what century was December 25 first identified as the day when Jesus was born?
Answer: December 25 was first identified as the date of Jesus’ birth by Sextus Julius Africanus in 221 and later became the universally accepted date.
Question: Immigrants of which nationality are credited with importing the tradition of Santa Claus to the Americas?
Answer: Dutch immigrants brought the tradition of Sinterklaas (based on St. Nicholas, the 4th-century bishop of Myra) to New Amsterdam (later New York).
Question: Who wrote the 1822 poem “A Visit from St. Nicholas” (also called “The Night Before Christmas”)?
Answer: Moore is said to have composed the poem, which begins “’Twas the night before Christmas…,” to entertain his children.
Question: True or False: George Frideric Handel’s Messiah was originally written for Easter.
Answer: The oratorio, which many listeners now associate with Christmas, was first performed on April 13, 1742.
Question: Which festival commemorates the visit of the Magi to Jesus?
Answer: The festival, celebrated on January 6, commemorates the first manifestation of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles, represented by the Magi.
Question: What is the gift given in the eighth verse of the song “The Twelve Days of Christmas”?
Answer: Twelve drummers drumming, eleven pipers piping, ten lords a-leaping, nine ladies dancing, eight maids a-milking, seven swans a-swimming, six geese a-laying, five golden rings, four colly birds, three French hens, two turtle doves, and a partridge in a pear tree.
Question: True or False: Christmas Island, in the Indian Ocean, got its name because European explorers sailed past it on Christmas Day.
Answer: Captain William Mynors of the British East India Company named it as he sailed past on Christmas Day, 1643.
Question: Which country would you be in if Jultomte brought you a present on Christmas Eve?
Answer: Jultomte is traditionally represented as small and thin. He is accompanied by a Christmas goat.
Question: Which famous Christmas song was written by Irving Berlin?
Answer: “White Christmas” was written by Irving Berlin and performed by Bing Crosby in the film Holiday Inn (1942).
Question: True or False: The first commercially produced Christmas cards were made in the United States.
Answer: The first Christmas cards were designed in England by John Callcott Horsely in 1843.
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