Sign up for our FREE
monthly Victoriana e-mag!


HOME · About Us · Contact Us Topical Index Articles by Magazine Links
Victorian Times - Our free monthly e-zine of Victoriana!
Our Victorian Bookstore Victorian Clip Art
Arts & Crafts
Business, Law, Govt
Victorian Christmas
The Colonies
Cooking & Recipes
Country/Village Life
Health & Medicine
House & Home
How It Was Made
Objects & Curiosities
Poverty & Charity
Science & Technology
Servants & Service
Social Occasions
Sports & Recreation
Women's Education
Women's Issues
The Working Man & Woman
World Cultures

PDF files on this site
are best viewed with
Adobe Reader 9.0
or later. Download
Acrobat Reader free.



A Victorian Christmas

For many, the word "Christmas" is virtually synonymous with "Victorian." Of course, the Victorians are famous for bringing us "Christmas as we know it" -- the tree, the gifts, the lights, even the cards. An actual Victorian Christmas, however, might look very different from what we've come to expect. And despite our tendency to associate Christmas with Victorians, Victorian magazines often gave very little space to Christmas topics, such as food, decorating and gift-giving.


Christmas, by His Grace the Archbishop of Canterbury
Christmas at Court, by the Hon. Mrs. H. Armytage (GOP 1883)
A brief history of Christmas customs at court.
Christmas in History (GOP 1896)
More specifically, Christmas in British history!
Christmas Parties, by T.F. Thiselton Dyer (GOP 1889)
How Christmas was celebrated in the 1700's.
How to Prepare for and Keep Christmas, by Ruth Lamb
What We Used to Do at Christmas, by Ruth Lamb (GOP 1883)
Reminiscences of Christmas and New Years' traditions, such as first-footing -- and the fact that while the teller was in awe of her first gas-lights, her listeners, she says, will tell their children of the first time they saw electric lights!


Hints for Christmas Decorations (GOP 1881)
Decorations include "mottos" made of cardboard or tinfoil letters amidst greenery.
Our Christmas Decorations (GOP 1884)
Our Novel Christmas Tree (Part I), by Ruth Lamb (GOP 1880)
How the Christmas tree was decorated.
Uncle Gilbert's Return, or, Christmas Decoration of the Home (GOP 1885)
A look at a Christmas celebration in Canada.


The Children's Party Supper, by Lucy Yates (GOP 1897)
Recipes for a children's supper, including Galantine (with rabbit), Chicken Patties, Duchess Gateaux, Crystal Palace Pudding, Chocolate Mould, and Prune Jelly. (The children also enjoyed mince pies, cheesecakes, and fruits and nuts.)
Christmas Fare for Rich and Poor, by Lucy Helen Yates (GOP 1896)
From Turkish fig-pudding to game pie, this will tantalize your holiday taste buds!
Christmas Poultry and Game, and How to Cook It (GOP 1892)
Christmas Sweet Dishes, by "Constance" (GOP 1892)


Christmas and Birthday Cards, by L. Fanny Rose (GOP 1895)
How to make them with dried botanical specimens.
Christmas Gifts, by B.C. Saward (GOP 1887)
A variety of simple gifts to make.
Christmas Presents in Art Needlework, by Marion Helen Burnside (GOP 1892)
Novelties in Christmas and New Years' Gifts, by Leirion Clifford (GOP 1898)
A variety of gifts to make in needlework.
On Giving Presents, by Verbum Sap. (GOP 1900)
Though not specifically a "Christmas" article, its tips certainly apply!
Private Christmas Cards, by Gleeson White (GOP 1896)
Some personal, home-made cards, and how to design one's own.


The Angels' Song
Words by Frances Ridley Havergal, music by C.H. Purday (GOP 1883)
Carol for Female Voices
Words by Longfellow, music by William Hunt (GOP 1894)
A Christmas Carol (GOP 1882)
A Christmastide Remembrance
Words by Mrs. Norton, music by C.A. Macirone (GOP 1888)
A Happy Christmas: The Girl's Own Carol
Words and music by Joseph Barnby (GOP 1884)
In Vesture White: A Song and Chorale for Christmastide
Words by Rev. Richard Wilton, music by Myles Foster (GOP 1889)
Joy Cometh in the Morning: A Short Cantata for Girls' Voices
Words by Helen Marion Burnside, music by Mary Augusta Salmond (GOP 1896)
An Old Christmas Carol (GOP 1881)
A Victorian version of "The First Nowell."
Old Daddy Christmas: A Musical Allegory
Words and music by Herbert Harraden (GOP 1892)
See, the Dawn from Heaven is Breaking! (GOP 1886)
A Christmas Carol.


Christmas Pastoral Operetta: The Queen of Arcadee
Words and music by Herbert Harraden (GOP 1890)
The Christmas Tree (GOP 1881)
On some Victorian Christmas games.
Cinderella, Arranged in Six Tableaux, by G.D. Lynch (GOP 1897)
A Christmas tableaux
Diamond Cut Diamond, by Somerville Gibney (GOP 1896)
A Christmas play or pageant.
A Friend in Need, by Somerville Gibney (GOP 1891)
A Christmas play.
Our Novel Christmas Tree (Part II), by Ruth Lamb (GOP 1880)
Script for a Christmas pageant to be performed by the children of the house.
An Original Charade (GOP 1881)
Script for a children's Christmas charade.
Our Christmas School Treat (GOP 1892)
An activity for children.
Our Lake, by Clara Thwaites (GOP 1886)
A Christmas "novelty" for the children: a "lake" in which they can "fish" for toys and bonbons.
The Pedlar: A Pastoral (for Christmas performance)
Words and music by Herbert Harraden (GOP 1891)
Per Parcels Post, by Somerville Gibney (GOP 1892)
A Christmas play or pageant.
Something New, by Somerville Gibney (GOP 1889)
New ideas for Christmas entertainments.


An Appeal (GOP 1887-1892)
An ongoing appeal for donations to schools and missions in India, with letters detailing how cards and gifts were received.
Christmas Customs Here and Elsewhere, by William Cowan (GOP 1895)
Christmas customs in Britain and Europe.
Christmas Day Festivities in Italy (GOP 1897)
Christmas in a French Boarding School (GOP 1887)
Christmas in the German Fatherland (GOP 1887)
Christmas in Italy (GOP 1887)
Christmas in Norway (GOP 1891)
Big picture, small article!
Popular Christmas Festivities in Naples (GOP 1896)
Reminiscences of Christmas, by an Anglo-Canadian (GOP 1891)
Reminiscences of Christmas in London and in Canada.


Christmas, by His Grace the Archbishop of Canterbury (GOP 1881)
A Christmas sermon.
Christmas Comes but Once a Year, by Gordon Stables, M.D., R.N. ("Medicus") (GOP 1889)
Some Christmas reminiscences, and tips on how to have a safe and healthy holiday.
Christmas with Our Poets, by T.F. Thiselton Dyer (GOP 1885)
How poets have written about Christmas.
How to Prepare for and Keep Christmas, by Ruth Lamb (GOP 1882)
The author particularly takes exception to those teachers who insist upon giving their students "just a little work to do" during their holiday, and advises boys and girls to have fun.


Christmas Day in a London Hospital (GOP 1890)
Christmas in the New Hospital for Women, by S.F.A. Caulfield (GOP 1884)
How Christmas is celebrated in the wards of a London women's hospital.
Hospital Sketches (GOP 1898)
Take a moment to discover how patients enjoyed "Christmas in the wards"!
Red Letter Days (GOP 1890)
A three-day "Christmas party" set up by the London school board to entertain children during the Christmas holidays.

Copyright © 2018 by
Moira Allen.
All rights reserved.

Magazine Abbreviations:
CFM = Cassell's Family Magazine GOP = Girl's Own Paper ILA = Illustrated London Almanack S = The Strand
AM = Atlantic Monthly C = Century Magazine D = Demorest's Monthly Magazine G = Godey's Lady's Book H = Harper's Monthly
Find out more about the magazines used on this site!
PDF files on this site are best viewed with Adobe Reader 9.0 or later. Download Acrobat Reader free.