Christmas confusion amongst Yorkshiremen

11 December 2011

SantaA survey revealed that despite embracing the full magic of Christmas, when asked about the festive holiday’s true meaning, we tend to appear clueless and have a surprising lack of knowledge.

The Christmas turkey alone had many of us scratching our heads with a quarter citing a chicken shortage in the 1960s as the reason to why we turned to the larger sized bird. And bizarrely some people think turkey is eaten because Mary and Joseph were turkey farmers or because Mary was half Turkish!

The unfamiliarity with all things festive emerged in a survey carried out among 3,000 adults by card and gift retailer Clintons, and concluded that we generally have no idea why we celebrate Christmas and half of us simply use it as an excuse to eat, drink and be merry.

While 40% per cent strongly view Christmas as a religious event, one in four are unaware of the fact it marks the birth of Jesus Christ. Our amusing lack of festive knowledge leads one quarter of us to believe that 1st December is the first day of Christmas and another quarter the 24th!

The poll revealed that one fifth had no idea Jesus was born in Bethlehem, while a further 20 per cent were also clueless when it came to the names of the three wise men – with Barry, Robin and Morris – the names of the Bee Gees popular as well as Mark, Matthew Luke and John!

Clintons Marketing Director, Tim Fairs said:

While many of us are baffled about the background behind this season, at its heart most people see it as being about family. We work hard all year and this special time means that we can enjoy good food and a well-earned rest with the people we love the most.

Other Yule tide faux pas include the belief that Boxing Day was introduced to allow bosses to reward hardworking staff with a box of goodies. Even the type of tree decorated in millions of homes around the world each Christmas left many confused with a quarter thinking Evergreen trees were put up in our living rooms.

Although we may be a little confused regarding the historical beliefs behind Christmas, the survey found that as a region, 65 per cent of us believe that at its core, the season is all about family and half of us think the most exciting thing was Christmas dinner with all the trimmings!

Tim Fairs, continues:

The survey has thrown up a number of surprising responses as even the more traditional facts about Father Christmas, such as where he lives, what he wears and who his reindeers are, have been lost over the years. But despite this, one thing that has clearly not been lost is the tradition of family and the importance of spending quality time together at Christmas.

When asked what would make their Christmas the best ever, a quarter of all respondents would simply ask for their whole family to be brought together for this one special day.

Funny festive facts

1. One in 10 think Christmas was invented so that families could be showered with presents

2. One fifth of people think the first day of Christmas is 1st December

3. Seven per cent think we eat turkey because Turkey was the first country to celebrate Christmas

4. One in 20 people named the BeeGees – Barry, Robin and Morris – as the three wise men

5. One in 10 people thought the three wise men brought silver and bronze as gifts for baby Jesus

6. Every one in 33 people thinks Jesus was born at the North Pole

7. One in 10 believe the 12 days of Christmas represent the amount of time Mary was in labour with Jesus

8. One in 10 employees thought Boxing Day was introduced so they could have festive hampers from the boss

9. Twelve per cent think Mary and Joseph are turkey traders which is why we eat it at Christmas

10. We are clueless when it comes to the traditional colour of Santa’s suit – one in 10 thought it was brown, while a third thought it was red


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