What the Phrase Merry Christmas Means

What the Phrase Merry Christmas Means

It falls from our lips without much thought: “Merry Christmas!” But what is it we are really saying? In an informal survey conducted recently more than 94 percent of Americans asked thought that the word “merry” meant “jolly”. Taken in context, many around the world do indeed celebrate a “jolly” Christmas these days. But that contemporary interpretation is not exactly the traditional definition of the word “merry”. In old England where the phrase originates the word ‘merry’ means pleasant or joyous. Alternatively, the word ‘merry’ also means to drink with great fervor. In some context, it is not a compliment to be described as merry or having made merry. This is one reason why even today in the U.K. theRead more

Great Debate: Merry Christmas or Happy Holidays?

Great Debate: Merry Christmas or Happy Holidays?

By Jeff Westover (Author bias: I’m completely neutral in this debate –honestly. If given the chance, I’d gladly scream ‘Merry Christmas’ at the most ardent anti-Christmas freak out there, especially if I knew it would turn them purple with rage. It is not that I enjoy making people angry but rather that in my own sick, twisted way I enjoy seeing people get angry at the silliest things. But at the same time, I hold no ill will for the phrase “Happy Holidays”. I find it funny that some people do.) Ebenezer Scrooge once famously said: “If I could work my will every idiot who goes about with “Merry Christmas” on his lips, should be boiled with his own pudding,Read more