I started wondering last week about Christmas traditions.  I looked at all the red and green that is used for Christmas decorating.  I asked several very bright people if they knew why the popularity of red and green.  No one knew the answer.  So I went on an hunt for the answer.  I know you are all thinking, “This woman has way too much time on her hands”.  But I really don’t have that much time but once I have a question without an answer I become a regular Dora the Explorer.

So gentle readers, the web site posted the following explanation:

christmas colors green and red shown in apples and pine


I think the most likely root of the red and green tradition dates back to the 1300s when Adam and Eve’s Day was celebrated on December 24th.  Each year on this day churches traditionally presented a Paradise Play depicting the story of Adam and Eve and the Garden of Eden.

Now you can’t have a story about Adam and Eve without an apple tree but since it wasn’t easy to find a real tree full of ripe, red apples during the winter apples someone came up with the idea of fastening apples to the branches of a pine tree.  This decorated pine tree represented the Tree of Good and Evil.  But the tree wasn’t only seen in the play.  Churches began adding a tree donning red apples into their Christmas displays.

The decorated tree that began as a prop for the Paradise play was so popular especially in Germany, that people began to put pine trees up in their homes during the holiday, decorating them with red apples, as the church folks had done and the tradition of having a Christmas treee was born.

The idea spread and both Christmas trees and the color combination of red and green were well on its way to becoming official symbols of the Christmas holiday.

Wishing you peace and happiness this Christmas.


About Bernadette

I live in the small town of Haddonfield, NJ. I am at an age in my life when I seem to spend time thinking and musing about life. These musings are usually stimulated by my walks through Haddonfield, my reading of books and fellow bloggers, and my interaction with my group of fabulous family and friends.

4 Responses

  1. I did not know the connection to Adam and Eve. I have been given apples as gifts for our tree for many years. I always thought it was the idea of an apple for the teacher but now am wondering if the apples might be connected to this idea from the past of apples on a tree. (Now I feel like getting all those apples out and hanging on the tree. it also makes sense to have apple pie tomorrow night. Thanks for your research!
    Merry Christmas!


  2. margaretsmn

    Learned something new today. Maybe next year I will decorate my tree with apples only. Somehow that might be a bit over the top; however, since apples are also associated with teachers.
    Thanks for the research. Merry Christmas!


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