Christmas

It was easy and clever for the Romans to associate Christmas, the new feast, with one already well established, the Sol Invictus, the official sun god and a patron of soldiers, (in the image above), celebrated on the 25th of December

The origins and traditions of Christmas celebrations in Italy

Christmas is a universal feast. It is the apogee of all year’s celebrations for Christians all around the world; it is a time of love and warmth for...
The most traditional and beautiful tradition of them all, in Italy, is that of Gesù Bambino

Of Robins, Ornaments and Special Gift Bearers: popular Christmas Legends in Italy

This time of the year is my personal favorite: I am a child of the snow and the mountains, invigorated by the dry, crispy chill of winter, rather...
Mostaccioli: the Calabrese Gingerbread

Mostaccioli: The Calabrese Christmas Gingerbread

Here in our home, one of our Christmas traditions is making gingerbread cookies and one gingerbread house each year. I often wondered if there is...
Stack of Pizzelle, a traditional dessert or cake from Abruzzo, a region in the southern-center Italy. This type of dessert is a leavened batter or dough cooked between two plates, partially like the well-known waffle— Photo by Giakita

Pizzelle, the Italian way for waffle cookies

Christmas is on its way, and it’s time for pizzelle - “little pizzas.” Italy’s crisp waffle cookies have many regional names, nevole, ciarancelle and...
Traditionally, the Christmas story often told is one of three kings called the magi who had traveled from the east to pay homage to the new-born King

“Of Kings and Magi and Myrrh”

Each Christmas season brings with it the telling and retelling of a familiar tale portraying the nativity of Jesus Christ. Camouflaged within the...
Christmas carols, christmas poems, italian culture, italian heritage, italian american, italian news, italian traditions

Christmas carols and Christmas poems

Dear Readers, Merry Christmas or Buon Natale is fine but Season’s Greetings sounds too one size fits all seasons. It seems that with merchants...
Italian Christmas Delicacy: Pandoro

Italian Christmas Delicacy: Pandoro

Pandoro is an egg- and butter-rich bread baked in a traditional star-shaped pan. The biga helps keep it fresh right through the holidays! Biga (...
Siena’s Christmas Panpepato

Siena’s Christmas Panpepato

Panpepato of Siena or Panforte Nero is a famous and historical sweet making in Tuscany during Christmas Time. The origin is medieval (Panforte means...

Do You Believe in Santa Claus? Part two of a magic story

In the first half of this two-part discussion, we left off with the question, “How did St. Nicholas become Santa Claus?” I must answer by first...
Saint Nicholas is particularly woshipped in Northern Europe as Sinterklaas

Do you really believe in Santa Claus? Ask Saint Nicholas

One Christmas day some years ago, as my family gathered around the Christmas tree, my granddaughter looked up at me and asked, “Grandpa, do you...