Welcome to Marmee's Pantry

Welcome to Marmee's Pantry

Monday, December 20, 2010

The 12 Days of CHRISTmas ~ Explained

Luke 19:40 ~ "I tell you," He [Jesus] replied, "if they keep quiet, the stones will cry out."

Has this cute, fun little CHRISTmas ditty ever puzzled you? What in the world do these Old World objects have to do with CHRISTmas?

I have your answer...

From 1558 until 1
829, truly committed Christians & Roman Catholics in England were not permitted to practice their faith openly. In the early days of this time period, the Catholic church even chained the Bible to the pulpit & forbade parishioners to own &/or read their own Bible. Someone during that era wrote this carol as a secret way to publicly celebrate the tenants of the Christian faith in a culture dominated by a tyrannical secular government.

It has two levels of meaning: the surface meaning plus a hidden meaning known only to the committed faithful. Each element in the carol has a code word for a religious reality which even their children could remember.

-The partridge in a pear tree was Jesus Christ.

-Two turtle doves were the Old and New Testaments.

-Three French hens stood for faith, hope and love.-

-The four calling birds were the four gospels of Matthew,
Mark, Luke & John.

-The five golden rings recalled the Torah or Law, the first five books of the Old Testament.

-The six geese a-laying stood for the six days of creation.

-Seven swans a-swimming represented the sevenfold gifts of the Holy Spirit--Prophesy, Serving, Teaching, Exhortation, Contribution, Leadership, and Mercy.

-The eight maids a-milking were the eight beatitudes.

-Nine ladies dancing were the nine fruits of the Holy Spirit--Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness, and Self Control.

-The ten lords a-leaping were the ten commandments.

-The eleven pipers piping s
tood for the eleven faithful disciples.

-The twelve drummers drumming symbolized the twelve points of belief in the Apostles' Creed.

Blessings from Ohio...Kim<><


  1. WONDERFUL post Kim!! I've read this before and am always amazed at the faithful and how they will find a way to honor God :)

    Merry CHRISTmas!

  2. Kim,
    I really enjoyed this! I have never seen the explanation before, thank you for sharing it!
    I just found your blog and I really love it!
    Keep up the good work!
    Much Love in Him,

  3. Wow, I really enjoyed this post. It was so fun to learn about the symbols of the 12 Days of Christmas.
    Thanks for sharing that; I loved it.
    Blessings to you! LeAnn

  4. hi Kim. i'm a new follower. i found your blog through a hop and i'm glad i did. everything here feels so homey and warm and welcoming! all these years i've been listening to it and sometimes singing along too and never knew about it. thanks for sharing to us the "secrets" behind the song. have a wonderful Christmas and God bless you and your loved ones! c",)


Related Posts with Thumbnails