Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Hidden Meaning: 12 Days of Christmas

One of my friends shared this with me! I thought it was really neat to see the hidden meanings behind such a famous song. You may have already seen this, but I thought I'd post just in case. I hope everyone had an amazing Christmas.

We had such a fabulous time with all sides of the family that we got to see. I ate way too much, but it was so delicious. May God bless your path in 2008. I think we are all in for many wonderful surprises, adventures and miracles! :) Enjoy!

This is from an e-mail:

The Origin of The Twelve Days of Christmas

There is one Christmas Carol that has always baffled me. What in the world do leaping lords, French hens, swimming swans, and especially the partridge who won't come out of the pear tree have to do with Christmas?

Today I found out, thanks to the Internet. From 1558 until 1829, Roman Catholics in England were not permitted to practice their faith openly. Someone during that era wrote this carol as a catechism song for young Catholics. It has two levels of meaning: the surface meaning plus a hidden meaning known only to members of their church. Each element in the carol has a code word for a religious reality which the children could remember.

  1. The partridge in a pear tree was Jesus Christ.
  2. Two turtle doves were the Old and New Testaments.
  3. Three French hens stood for faith, hope and love.
  4. The four calling birds were the four gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke & John.
  5. The five golden rings recalled the Torah or Law, the first five books of the Old Testament.
  6. The six geese a-laying stood for the six days of creation.
  7. Seven swans a-swimming represented the sevenfold gifts of the Holy Spirit: Prophesy, Serving, Teaching, Exhortation, Contribution, Leadership, and Mercy.
  8. The eight maids a-milking were the eight beatitudes.
  9. Nine ladies dancing were the nine fruits of the Holy Spirit: Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness, and Self Control.
  10. The ten lords a-leaping were the Ten Commandments.
  11. The eleven pipers piping stood for the eleven faithful disciples.
  12. The twelve drummers drumming symbolized the twelve points of belief in the Apostles' Creed.

2 comments:

Ornery's Wife said...

Fascinating. I had never seen or heard of this before. Glad you all had a nice Christmas. Ours was perfect in every way. Well, except I wish we could have seen you guys!

Life is great in 2008! Hope to see you soon!
TM

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