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Daemon
Posted: Sunday, December 17, 2017 12:00:00 AM
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Saturnalia

This Ancient Roman Winter Solstice festival began on December 17 and lasted for seven days. It was held in honor of Saturn, the father of the gods, and was characterized by the suspension of discipline and reversal of the usual order. Grudges and quarrels were forgotten; businesses, courts, and schools closed down; and masquerading or change of dress between the sexes often occurred. The festivities were characterized by various kinds of excesses—giving rise to the modern use of the term saturnalian, which is used to describe "unrestrained license and revelry." More...
KSPavan
Posted: Sunday, December 17, 2017 5:28:54 AM

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Today's Holiday
Saturnalia
This Ancient Roman Winter Solstice festival began on December 17 and lasted for seven days. It was held in honor of Saturn, the father of the gods, and was characterized by the suspension of discipline and reversal of the usual order. Grudges and quarrels were forgotten; businesses, courts, and schools closed down; and masquerading or change of dress between the sexes often occurred. The festivities were characterized by various kinds of excesses—giving rise to the modern use of the term saturnalian, which is used to describe "unrestrained license and revelry."
ChristopherJohnson
Posted: Sunday, December 17, 2017 9:32:55 AM

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Happy Saturnalia to all! The Sun is going back soon.
zina antoaneta
Posted: Sunday, December 17, 2017 10:23:57 AM

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Maybe that's why the Roman empire lasted the longest in human history--for it had a modicum of flexibility in its social structures. The slaves could even earn their freedom and enrich themselves during their life times.
zina antoaneta
Posted: Sunday, December 17, 2017 10:24:01 AM

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raghd muhi al-deen
Posted: Sunday, December 17, 2017 11:22:06 AM

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God Saturn honoring in-midwinter

with my pleasure
monamagda
Posted: Sunday, December 17, 2017 12:44:00 PM

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TEMPLE OF SATURN AND OTHER SATURNALIA CUSTOMS

Constructed in the fourth century A.D. to replace an earlier temple, the Temple of Saturn in Rome served as the ceremonial center of later Saturnalia celebrations. On the first day of the festivities, a young pig would often be publicly sacrificed at the temple, which was located in the northwest corner of the Roman Forum.

The cult statue of Saturn in the temple traditionally had woolen bonds tied around his feet, but during Saturnalia these bonds were loosened to symbolize the god’s liberation.

In many Roman households, a mock king was chosen: the Saturnalicius princeps, or “leader of Saturnalia,” sometimes also called the “Lord of Misrule.” Usually a lowlier member of the household, this figure was responsible for making mischief during the celebrations—insulting guests, wearing crazy clothing, chasing women and girls, etc.

The idea was that he ruled over chaos, rather than the normal Roman order. The common holiday custom of hiding coins or other small objects in cakes is one of many dating back to Saturnalia, as this was a method of choosing the mock king.

IS CHRISTMAS A PAGAN HOLIDAY?

Thanks to the Roman Empire’s conquests in Britain and the rest of Europe from the second century B.C. to the fourth century A.D.—and their suppression of older seasonal rites practiced by the Celts and other groups—today’s Western cultures derive many of their traditional celebrations of midwinter from Saturnalia.

The Christian holiday of Christmas, especially, owes many of its traditions to the ancient Roman festival, including the time of year Christmas is celebrated. The Bible does not give a date for Jesus’ birth; in fact, some theologians have concluded he was probably born in spring, as suggested by references to shepherds and sheep in the Nativity story.

But by the fourth century A.D., Western Christian churches settled on celebrating Christmas on December 25, which allowed them to incorporate the holiday with Saturnalia and other popular pagan midwinter traditions.


http://www.history.com/topics/saturnalia


Pagans and Christians co-existed (not always happily) during this period, and this likely represented an effort to convince the remaining pagan Romans to accept Christianity as Rome’s official religion.

Before the end of the fourth century, many of the traditions of Saturnalia—including giving gifts, singing, lighting candles, feasting and merrymaking—had become absorbed by the traditions of Christmas as many of us know them today.
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