Sunday, December 14, 2014

The Bride's Christmas Tree

Above are ornament types often found on the bride's first Christmas tree in Germany.
       In Germany it is customary to give Christmas ornaments to the bride on her wedding day. Below are the original meanings attached to the traditional ornaments that hang upon the couple's first Christmas tree. The ornaments are most frequently made of glass, however, you could give a selection of these Christmas ornaments made from any number of interesting materials. A young girl might even collect each ornament herself over a longer period of time and store them in a hope chest.
      My husband's mother collected his first ornaments, one per year, every year, until he married. Then these ornaments were boxed up and gifted to me at my wedding shower.
  1. Acorn - Resurrection in Christ
  2. Angel - messengers from God
  3. Apple - reminder to avoid temptations
  4. Bell - joyful noise, announcing important news
  5. Birds - bring messages of joy
  6. Bird Nest - money, fortune, physical wealth
  7. Carrot - good luck in the kitchen
  8. Church - spiritual family/home
  9. Devil - He serves St. Nickolas, according to legend, for one day every year (Christmas) as form of punishment because of his disloyalty to God.
  10. Dove - symbol of the Holy Spirit, the third person of The Holy Trinity
  11. Fir Tree - Everlasting life through Christ, because it remains green during winter
  12. Fish - identity in Christ, provision, Peter finds the tax hidden in a fish
  13. Flower Basket - symbolic of hope, it springs eternal
  14. Fruit Basket - abundance of good health, harvest
  15. Grape Cluster - communion with Christ and other believers
  16. Heart - love
  17. House - shelter
  18. Orange - wealth and prosperity, during many centuries to have oranges in winter months was considered a luxury 
  19. Pickle - game, extra gift goes to those who find it on their tree
  20. Pine Cone - wisdom
  21. Rabbit - fertility, rabbits multiply easily
  22. Pink Rose - Virgin Mary
  23. Yellow Rose - Friendship
  24. Walnut - good fortune, also connected with telling fortunes
  25. White Rose - Spiritual Love
  26. Saint Nicholas - generosity and goodwill towards others, The Bishop of Myra was an abolitionist
  27. Ship - passage through trouble or over troubled waters
  28. Star - guiding light, early believers used the night sky to guide them on their journeys, astrologers from the east followed a constellation to find Jesus
  29. Teapot - hospitality, offering tea to strangers has ancient roots
  30. Tulip - A red tulip means eternal love

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