The “X” Word is Xmas

Xmas is a common abbreviation for Christmas. I’ve heard people argue that this is a “modern” way to secularize Christmas by taking Christ out of Christmas. However, history tells us this is merely an abbreviation, just as Dr. for doctor or Rev. for reverend. The abbreviation makes one no less the doctor or minister.

The “mas” part came from the Latin-derived Old English word for “mass,” and the “X” came from the Greek letter “Chi” which is the first letter for Christ in Greek. But no matter how you slice it, it is not a move by a “modern” generation. In fact, the word “Christ” and “Christmas,” have been abbreviated in English for the past 1,000 years. There are references as far back as 1021 AD. It was used in a letter in the UK in 1753, Lord Byron used it in 1811, Samuel Coleridge in 1801, Lewis Carroll in 1864, and Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. in 1923.

For me, it’s a great way to use the 24th letter of the alphabet in my blog. So Merry Xmas, or Merry Christmas, or Happy Holidays! Just have a wonderful time, enjoy your family and friends, and celebrate how your heart dictates.

Teresa
https://www.teresaburrell.com

1 Comment
  1. Oh that is very interesting! Thanks for sharing and have a wonderful Christmas!!

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