The Christmas tree ornaments and their origins

Christmas approaches and up goes beautifully decorated trees. We have a whole lot of them at Resorts World Sentosa as well. But how did the tree ornaments came about? RWScoop gives you an insight.

The Tree

Christmas TreeThe tree first appeared in religious plays of the Middle Ages that told the story of Creation and Adam and Eve. These plays featured a Tree of Paradise, similar to the one in the Garden of Eden.

The tradition of having a tree at home was popularised in Britain in the 1840s, when Queen Victoria included a tree in the royal family’s Christmas celebrations.



The Red Bauble

Christmas ornamentChristmas trees were once decorated with red apples, in reference to the forbidden fruit foolishly picked by Eve in Eden. The bauble derived from this tradition, first appeared in Germany in the mid-19th century.

The popularity of mass manufactured ornaments rose in 1880s when German glass firms created glass moulds of animals and saints, which were a big hit with the public.


The Star (of Bethlehem)

Christmas StarLike the star that led the Wise Men to the birthplace of Jesus in Bethlehem, the star at the top of the Christmas tree is meant to bring guidance to all who see it.


The Candle

Christmas candleThe candle represents the notion that Christ is the ‘Light of the world’ and was placed as decorations on trees in the 18th century. As real fire proved to be hazardous, with many candles causing fires at home that insurers refused to insure, in 1882, Edward Johnson lighted up a Christmas tree with eighty small electric light bulbs, the first modern Christmas lights.

Christmas Gifts

Christmas presentThough we now put presents under the tree, in the past, gifts were tied to the branches of the tree. Today, most presents are too big to be hung off the tree and are instead gathered under the tree.



This information first appeared in INVITES Dec 2013 issue


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