Monday, 26 December 2011

12 Days of Christmas

The 12 Days of Christmas run from December 26th until January 6th. The song The Twelve Days of Christmas is a cumulative song with each verse building upon the previous one. There is thought that the hidden meaning of the song was a way to teach children about Christianity. The repetition in the song is an wonderful way for children to learn and commit to memory. Here are the Christian meanings behind each verse:

  1. A Partridge in a Pear Tree - The partridge symbolizes Jesus as the head of the church
  2. Two Turtle Doves - The two testaments of the bible - the Old Testament and the New
  3. Three French Hens - The Three Wise Men (Gaspar, Balthasar, Melchior)
  4. Four Calling Birds - The Four Gospels - Matthew, Mark, Luke and John
  5. Five Gold Rings - The first five books of the Old Testament - or the Torah
  6. Six Geese a Laying - Six Days of Creation
  7. Seven Swans a Swimming - The Seven Gifts of the Holy Spirit (Prophesy, Serving, Teaching, Exhortation, Contribution, Leadership and Mercy)
  8. Eight Maids a Milking - The Eight Beatitudes
  9. Nine Ladies Dancing - The Nine Fruits of the Holy Spirit (Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness and Self-Control)
  10. Ten Lords a Leaping - The Ten Commandments
  11. Eleven Pipers Piping - The Eleven Faithful Apostles (Peter, Andrew, James, John, Philip, Matthew, Bartholomew, Thomas, Thaddeus, Simon, Judas Iscariot)
  12. Twelve Drummers Drumming - The Twelve Points of the Apostle's Creed

If you were in fact to receive the gifts in a cumulative fashion, over the 12 days of Christmas, you would receive 364 gifts.

Partridges: 1 × 12 = 12
Doves: 2 × 11 = 22
Hens 3 × 10 = 30
Calling birds: 4 × 9 = 36
Golden rings: 5 × 8 = 40
Geese: 6 × 7 = 42
Swans: 7 × 6 = 42
Maids: 8 × 5 = 40
Ladies: 9 × 4 = 36
Lords: 10 × 3 = 30
Pipers: 11 × 2 = 22
Drummers: 12 × 1 = 12
Total = 364

And in 2011 the cost of all 364 gifts would be $24,263.18

Merry Christmas!

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