THE CHRISTMAS FEAST AND SANTA CLAUS

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          Christmas takes place on December 25. There are some tra­ditions connected with it. One of them is to give presents to each other. It is not only children and members of family who give presents to each other. It’s a tradition to give Christmas presents to the people you work with, to give presents to friends, to send them Christmas cards. Another tradition is to have a Christmas Feast.

          On Christmas day, the year’s greatest feast was served. Although now we have different foods, the idea is still the same. The feast was started off with drinks and music. Once everyone was seated, the food was served, after dessert, peo­ple drank and danced. The banquet lasted hours and was the highlight of the day. During the Feast they served beef, meat pies, roasted duck, geese, pigs, porridge, fancy cakes, and toast. Christmas was a huge celebration filled with lots of ea­ting, drinking, singing, dancing, and gift giving.

          The beginning of custom of gift giving during Christmas started from the three wise men, with their three gifts for the Christ child. Since then people have made up different things to tell their children where their Christmas presents came from. Saint Nicholas was known in early Christian legends for saving storm-tossed sailors, standing up for children, and gi­ving gifts to the poor. Although many of his stories can’t be proven true, his legend spread throughout Europe, and he was soon known for his extreme generosity and gift giving. Many stories include him riding through the sky on a horse and wea­ring his red bishop’s cloak, sometimes accompanied by Black Peter, an elf whose job was to punish the bad children. The most known legend is when he walks through the streets in his bishop clothes, carrying a sack full of presents, and leaving a gift on the windowsills of children’s houses.

         From the different parts of the world, there are different names of Santa Claus, but the spirit of Christmas remains the same. Spanish children call their Santa Balthasar, children in

Italy have a female Santa named La Belfana, Denmark has a gnome named Jule-Nissen, Holland has Sinter Klaas, Germa­ny has Sanct Herr, Russia and Ukraine Dedushka Moroz and there are even some places that believe the Christ child brings their presents.

         Christmas is a holiday, when all fairy tales come alive. It is time when aunt Happiness and uncle Goodness strolling around, while Dedushka Moroz and Santa Claus give gifts.

 

 

 

QUESTIONS:

 

1. When does Christmas take place?

2. What traditions can be connected with Christmas?

3. What was the feast on Christmas day?

4. Where did the custom of gift giving during Christmas start from?

5. What Was Saint Nicholas known for?

6. What is the most known legend about Saint Nicholas?

7. What kind of holiday is Christmas?

 

 

VOCABULARY:

to connect — связывать

feast — праздник

highlight — основной момент

roasted duck — жареная утка

goose (мн.ч. geese) — гусь

fancy — разукрашенный, необычный

huge — огромный

wise — мудрый

to save — спасать

to toss — бросать, выбрасывать

bishop — епископ

cloak — плащ

to accompany — сопровождать

to punish — наказывать

sack— мешок

windowsill — подоконник

spirit — дух

to stroll around — бродить, прогуливаться

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