On The First Day of Christmas….

On The First Day of Christmas….


The Twelve Days of Christmas

The Twelve Days of Christmas

One of the oldest Christmas songs still be sung is, “The Twelve Days of Christmas” a tune from 18th century England. The song has remained popular because it is memorable, fun, and historical.

However, there may be another meaning to the tune, one that points directly to the real meaning of Christmas: the birth of our Savior. During a period spanning the mid sixteenth to early nineteenth century, England was going through a time of profound religious upheaval, with Protestants and Catholics vying for control of the country. Most of that time, the Protestants were in control, putting the Catholic faithful in a distinct minority status.

Unfortunately, the rulers of England during that age often persecuted those who did not follow the state endorsed religion with Catholics finding that they had to come up with other ways to encourage each other in their faith. One way was to do that was to create a song which, on the surface, had one meaning while deep down there is another one that would soon become apparent.

Oh, by the way, there are some people who dispute whether the song does, indeed, have another meaning to it. The following are excerpts from the song and what each character represents according to those who claim that it has a deeper meaning:

  • A Partridge in a Pear Tree – Jesus Christ
  • Two Turtle Doves – The Old and New Testaments
  • Three French Hens – The three virtues of Faith, Hope and Charity
  • Four Calling/Collie Birds – Four gospels, Matthew, Mark, Luke and John
  • Five Golden Rings – First five books of the Old Testament
  • Six Geese-a-Laying – Six days of creation before God’s rest on the seventh day
  • Seven Swans-a-Swimming – Seven gifts of the Holy Spirit
  • Eight Maids-a-Milking – Eight Beatitudes
  • Nine Ladies Dancing – Nine fruits of the Holy Spirit
  • Ten Lords-a-Leaping – Ten Commandments
  • Eleven Pipers Piping – Eleven faithful disciples
  • Twelve Drummers Drumming -Twelve points of belief in the Apostles’ Creed

How about you? Do you think that the Twelve Days of Christmas has a secondary meaning or do you believe that what is sung on face value is what was originally intended with this historic Christmas tune?

Adv. — Whether shopping for twelve Christmas days or one day, you may find it easier to shop online instead of venturing out to crowded stores in congested malls. Choose from international decor and hunt down those luxury finds, all from the convenience of your personal keyboard.


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Categories: Consumer Tips, Fun Stuff

About Author

Matthew C. Keegan

Matt Keegan is a freelance writer and editor as well as publisher of "Matt's Musings", his personal blog. Matt covers campus, consumer, business and financial topics on various websites and blogs, and has been published in the "Houston Chronicle", "Sam's Club Magazine" and "Wisconsin Golfer".