Christmas In Ritual & Tradition - online book

The Observance Of Christmas In Various Lands And Ages.

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CONTENTS
CHAPTER IV
PAGE
CHRISTMAS IN LITURGY AND POPULAR DEVOTION            . 87
Advent and Christmas Offices of the Roman Church—The Three Masses of Christmas, their Origin and their Celebration in Rome—The Midnight Mass in Many Lands—Protestant Survivals of the Night Services— Christmas in the Greek Church—The Eastern Epiphany and the Blessing of the Waters—The Presepio or Crib, its Supposed Institution by St. Francis—Early Traces of the Crib—The Crib in Germany, Tyrol, &c.— Cradle-rocking in Mediaeval Germany—Christmas Minstrels in Italy and Sicily—The Presepio in Italy—Ceremonies with the Culla and the Bam­bino in Rome—Christmas in Italian London—The Spanish Christmas— Possible Survivals of the Crib in England.
CHAPTER V
CHRISTMAS DRAMA .             .             .             .             .             .             .119
Origins of the Mediaeval Drama—Dramatic Tendencies in the Liturgy— Latin Liturgical Plays—The Drama becomes Laicized—Characteristics of the Popular Drama—The Nativity in the English Miracle Cycles— Christmas Mysteries in France—Later French Survivals of Christmas Drama—German Christmas Plays—Mediaeval Italian Plays and Pageants —Spanish Nativity Plays—Modern Survivals in Various Countries— The Star Singers, &c.
POSTSCRIPT ........ 155
PART II
PAGAN SURVIVALS
CHAPTER VI
PRE-CHRISTIAN WINTER FESTIVALS .             .             .             -159
The Church and Superstition—Nature of Pagan Survivals—Racial Origins —Roman Festivals of the Saturnalia and Kalends—Was there a Teutonic Midwinter Festival ?—The Teutonic, Celtic, and Slav New Year— Customs attracted to Christmas or January 1—The Winter Cycle of Festivals—Rationale of Festival Ritual : (a) Sacrifice and Sacrament, (b) The Cult of the Dead, (c) Omens and Charms for the New Year— Compromise in the Later Middle Ages—The Puritans and Christmas— Decay of Old Traditions.
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