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For something that happens every year of our lives, we really don’t know much about Christmas.
We don’t know that Christmas was once celebrated on March 28, the date having been chosen by a madman. We’re oblivious to the fact that the Advent calendar was actually invested by a housewife from Munich to stop her children pestering her for a Christmas countdown.
We’re unaware of the recipe that inspired the Twelve Days of Christmas. And we would never have guessed that the invention of crackers was merely a way of popularising sweet wrappers.
Luckily, bestselling author Mark Forsyth is here to unwrap this gallimaufry of oddities and reveal the hidden stories behind Yuletide traditions.