The fir tree

It was prominent in Germany and Scandinavia and expanded throughout the world until it became essential as a representation of Christmas.

Besides the brilliant bulbs and lights, there are also other ideas from around the world for decorating the Christmas tree.

In Lithuania, for example, a spider and her web is placed on the tree. This is based on a legend which says that this had once been made by a poor woman as her children slept. When the kids woke up, on Christmas Day, they are said to have found the tree with the golden webs shinning.

In the old Czechoslovakia [today the countries of Czech Republic and Slovakia] the tree is embelished with dyed egg shells and in the USA with festoons from pop-corn. Elsewhere, they hang horns of animals and bells in order to frighten away the mean spirits. In the past they put lit candles on the firs. That custom led to a lot of accidents!

Thus, until the invention of electric bulbs and for obvious reasons they also had a bucket of water under the tree, to counter the danger of fires.