A Gallop through Midwinter

We have, it seems, long celebrated something special at this time of year. When the days are shortest and coldest, we need something to look forward to.

Ghost of Christmas Past, illus. John Leech, 1843 for Dickens' A Christmas Carol

Ghost of Christmas Past, illus. John Leech, 1843 for Dickens' A Christmas Carol

For many people in the northern and western world, it’s about Christmas, the anniversary of Jesus’ birth. You might have heard that the bible actually gives very little clue about the actual date of Jesus’ birth, and this is true. The establishment of 25th December as Christmas was only settled by the pope in Rome in 354 CE, a good three-and-a-half centuries after the event. Continue reading