Christmas: Traditions, Truth and Total Baubles (Hardcover) by Nick Page

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“If the story of Christmas tells us one thing, it’s that human beings are always inventing ‘ancient’ traditions…”. So says Nick Page, who rummages (on our behalf) through a sleigh-full of festive fake news that we pass around each year …along with those unwanted presents.

Some of it is historical: ‘Christians “stole” the date of Christmas from an existing Roman festival’; some is folkloric: ‘mistletoe is a Druidic ritual’; some to do with social history: ‘Santa Claus was invented by Coca-Cola’ or ‘Prince Albert introduced Christmas trees to Britain’. Christians also pile it on thick, each year singing carols telling us there were three kings or that Jesus was born in a stable, where a drummer boy arrived and was, apparently, welcomed with open arms. But it’s all utter baubles. Combining in-depth historical research with cheerfully irreverent humour, Nick saves us from ourselves and, along the way, discovers why every advent calendar is wrong, how innkeepers have been unfairly maligned for thousands of years and… just what the deal is with sprouts. With any luck, we’ll explore what this festival really means and how we can get back to something real and true beneath all the wrapping. 

Nick Page ditches the festive fake news.

Nick Page Prized for his skills as a writer, speaker, unlicensed historian, applied ranter and general informationmonger, former BBC comedy writer Nick Page has written over 70 books, including most recently, his NEARLY INFALLIBLE HISTORY series.