In the 17th century, the Puritans, contemptuous of how profane the holiday had become, banned Christmas altogether, ordaining that December 25th be a working day and that the birth of Jesus not be sullied by such revelry. Anonymous: Anonymous wrote:If I either know you and know what you celebrate, or there are clear signs of what you celebrate, I wish you that. It appears that Wal-Mart has caved to the whiney christian movment who have the irrational belief (among many others) that there is a sincere "war against Christmas" and that the term "happy holidays" is an insult directed towards them. At Christmas, we don’t tend to wish others a “happy holiday,” as we might imagine we would if the holy day in question was merely December 25th, the work-free birthday of Jesus Christ. Merry Christmas and Happy Christmas are both greetings used during the last part of December, around Christmastime.The first word of each is only capitalized when used as a greeting. “A merrier Christmas, Bob, my good fellow, than I have given you, for many a year!”. Sometimes I say Seasons Greetings. It encompasses all holidays, religious in nature or not, that are celebrated during the winter holiday season. Andrew McGill December 20, 2016. Happy Holidays, Round 2,016. We're talking 17-to-1, here. I think you are right in your sentiments about the Christmas Music thing. In a slightly ironic twist, this unconscious social reinvention is much of the order of the one Dickens and his contemporaries orchestrated a century earlier, only this time it’s fixated less on self-improvement and camaraderie and more on giving and receiving gifts. Young observed last year in the, , “merry Christmas” was then “something the uncouth masses shouted as they traveled in drunken mobs.”, The value of conviviality is a lesson Ebenezer Scrooge learns in, , published in 1843. Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays used to be easily interchangeable. Breadcrumb Trail Links. Anonymous: Anonymous wrote:If I either know you and know what you celebrate, or there are clear signs of what you celebrate, I wish you that. What started as a dispute forged by religious preference became an argument of political malice. Christmas trees are enjoyed by many families, not just those who actively attend church. And so it’s not coincidence that the phrase should recur frequently throughout the novella, signifying not libertine cheer but simple mirth and good-natured jolliness. Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Have a great solstice whatever. The perennial debate gets a new coat of cheer from Donald Trump. With all of the chaos going on in the world, that energy should be used to unite the already divided church and love the unchurched. America was born on Christian beliefs, so if you want to say "happy holidays", go somewhere else. A battle so heated and a rivalry so strong that even the Wolverines and Buckeyes think it is too intense. If someone chooses to say "Happy Holidays", I figure they're referring to the secular season of giving, not to the specific Christian holiday of Christ's Mass. I always thought Happy Holidays referred to holy days. Related. A tweet from Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel reignited the debate of saying 'Merry Christmas' vs. 'Happy Holidays' this season. In this period, Christmas was celebrated in the traditional pagan fashion, with music and ample drink, and to the extent that “merry Christmas” gained purchase at the time as a salutation, it was not so much a gesture of pious faith as a toast to the convivial spirit of the season. When one is speaking of a happy or merry Christmas, the adjectives are lowercase. Times, “merry Christmas” was then “something the uncouth masses shouted as they traveled in drunken mobs.”. In other words, “happy holidays” was never intended to reference a single holy-day, but rather several in succession. I enjoy aspects of both celebrations, but I can keep the reverent birth of Christ observation separate from the trees and candy and Santa Claus and shopping thing. And compared with five years ago, a growing share of Americans (52%) say it does not matter to them how they are greeted in stores and businesses during the holiday season – whether with “merry Christmas” or a less-religious greeting like “happy holidays”. Well, happiness is agreeable to all sensibilities, even those by which merriment offends. Variations include “happy Christmas” and “merry Xmas” (where the “X” stands in for “Christ”). Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, Seasons Greetings, Happy Christmas -- the season of goodwill and peace carries loaded greetings. “Merry Christmas” is used in the U.S. while “Happy Christmas” is used in the U.K. The word “holiday,” as you will might have guessed, derives from the Old English word “haligdaeg,” a compound of the words “halig” and “daeg” — “holy” and “day” — yoked together in that fashion as far back as the 10th century, or perhaps even earlier. Fight back against that by doing one thing: say “Merry Christmas.” Don’t say Happy Holidays. "The phrase "Happy holidays" ignores non-believers, Muslims, Buddists, and a handful of other religions I mentioned and cited in R1." Perhaps the endurance of these two phrases is due to the pleasant sound they create; charming in ways that “merry holidays” and “happy Christmas” — other than to the English — simply are not. Young observed last year in theL.A. Calum Marsh: Language evolves. Merry Christmas vs Happy Holidays What do you say? In the case of “merry Christmas” and “happy holidays,” it has evolved to the point of nondescript, perfunctory salutation, of no more serious consequence in its particulars than when the man on the customer-service helpline asks “how may I assist you?” It means an ounce of fellow-feeling and a need to keep transactions moving, plus maybe the scarcest shade of festive spirit owing to the decorations and snow on the ground — nothing more, nothing less. In other words, I was brought up to believe in God, to celebrate Christmas, to worship the baby Jesus and to long to visit Bethlehem and see the special … It is a traditionally Christian sentiment. The debate over whether one should say "Merry Christmas" or "Happy holidays" has been going on for decades. Should an office "Christmas party" be called a "holiday party" so that it's more … Let everyone know about the miracle that happened today all those years ago and why you are so excited to celebrate it. The Advent is a cycle on the Christian calendar that includes not only Christmas Day but the Epiphany on the first Sunday after January first. Merry Christmas vs. Perhaps the endurance of these two phrases is due to the pleasant sound they create. People get so bent out of shape and can't accept the fact that Christ's birth should not be taken out of context. The Jolly Family wishes you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! Happy holidays includes more religions than Merry Christmas, which is why it is better. By a large margin. A generic "Happy Holidays" greeting covers my bases better than a specific "Merry Christmas". It encompasses all holidays, religious in nature or not, that are celebrated during the winter holiday season. So I switched to happy holidays, to which I was yelled at because of the war on christmas. After all, for most other holidays, we use the word "happy." © 2021 National Post, a division of Postmedia Network Inc. All rights reserved. Calum Marsh: Language evolves. Posted by Adam Lockhart With Thanksgiving comes my favorite sporting tradition and no, it’s not watching the Lions get spanked again on national television. Trump has decided to take a less politically correct approach, by boldly proclaiming “Merry Christmas” on the official cards. It was not until the 19th century that Christmas was entirely restored as a welcome ritual, and was indeed considerably redefined in the popular imagination, owing to the work of Charles Dickens and others, as an occasion for harmonious family gathering and generosity. The phrase “Merry Christmas” would hang on, but the image of a family sharing a bottle of port or wine in the first commercial Christmas card was to give way to more temperate holiday … An advertisement for a children’s toy store published in the, Hear me out: The kingdoms in the made-for-TV Christmas movies are all at war, The absolutely official, completely objective, not biased at all, definitive ranking of the 'so bad, they're good' Christmas TV movies, How The Holiday makes you glad (and a little sad) to be single at Christmas, tap here to see other videos from our team. Happy holidays includes more religions than Merry Christmas, which is why it is better. According to these books, the phrase "Merry Christmas" is a far more importantpart of our literary culture than "Happy Holidays." After all, for most other holidays, we use the word "happy." Makes you sick, doesn’t it? According to church groups, this should not mean only for religions other than Christianity. 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