It is -- in case you haven't noticed -- Christmas Day. How much do you know about the holiday you may, or may not, be celebrating?
Here's a quiz the whole family can take. (Answers are in the box.)
1. Saint Nicholas, better known as Santa Claus, is how many years old.
a. 78 c. 752
b. 100 d. 1,700
2. Santa Claus is known by different names in different countries. Pick out the imposter.
a. Father Chirstmas
b. Pere Noel
c. Klaus Kristen
d. Kris Kringle
3. Who wrote the popular Christmas carol "Silent Night?"
a. Joseph Haydn
b. Franz Gruber
c. Bing Crosby
4. Which food is not usually part of the traditional Christmas dinner?
a. roast turkey
b. plum pudding
c. roast goose
d. baked Alaska
5. What famous Christmas character said, "Bah, humbug!"?
a. Mrs. Santa Claus
c. Ebenezer Scrooge
d. Tiny Tim
6. The Three Wise Men brought all of the following gifts except:
7. Who started the tradition of sending Christmas cards?
a. the English c. the Germans
b. the French d. the Dutch
8. Which American president was against Christmas trees?
a. Abraham Lincoln
b. Theodore Roosevelt
c. Harry Truman
d. Richard Nixon
9. The tradition of Christmas trees started in:
c. the United States
10. When did the first decorated Christmas trees appear in the United States?
a. 1652 c. 1823
b. 1747 d. 1910
11. When were electric lights first used to decorate Christmas trees?
a. 1675 c. 1882
b. 1750 d. 1903
12. Red and green are the official colors of Christmas because:
a. Rudolph's nose was red and his antlers green
b. Money is green and you're left in the red
c. Holly has green leaves and red berries
d. Christmas trees were strung with red cranberries
13. The flower most closely associated with Christmas is the:
14. The famous ballet The Nutcracker was written by:
15. On the sixth day of Christmas my true love sent to me, six:
a. lords a-leaping
b. pipers piping
c. geese a-laying
d. swans a-swimming
16. the famous Christmas work the Messiah, was written by:
17. "Frosty the Snowman," the most popular Christmas record of 1951, was sung by:
a. Perry Como
b. Neil Sedaka
c. Gene Autry
d. Dean Martin
18. Which one of these popular Christmas carols doesn't mention Christmas at all?
a. Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
b. God Rest You Merry, Gentlemen
c. Jingle Bells
d. Deck the Halls with Boughs of Holly
19. The Irving Berlin hit "White Chrilstmas" was sung in which of the following movies about Christmas?
a. "Holiday Affair"
b. "Holliday Inn"
b. "Holliday Inn"
c. "Miracle on 34th Street"
d. "I'll Be Seeing You"
20. Which famous person was not born on Christmas?
a. Anwar Sadat
b. Humphrey Bogart
c. Rod Serling
d. Elizabeth Taylor The Answers
Give yourself 5 points for each question you answered correctly. If you scored 50, you know an average amount; 65, you know a lot; 75, you are up on Christmas; 85 or over, you are an expert.
1. d. Saint Nicholas was born around 280 A.D., so he celebrated his 1,700th birthday this year.
2. c. He's called Father Christmas in England, Pere Noel in France, Kris Kringle in America by the Pennsylvania Dutch.
3. b. Franz Gruber, organist at St. Nicholas' Church at Oberndorf, near Salzburg, Austria, wrote the music on Christmas Eve, 1818. The words were written by Father Josef Mohr.
4. d. Mince pie, not baked Alaska, appears on most people's tables.
5. c. Scrooge, the miser in Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol."
6. b. They brought gold worthy of a king, incense to be used in prayer, and myrrh to sooth suffering.
7. a. The English, over 100 years ago.
8. b. TR, because he was against cutting down trees. But he changed his mind when farmers began to plant trees especially for Christmas.
9. a. Christmas trees date back to 16th-century Germany.
10. b. In 1747, in Bethlehem, Pa.
11. c. In 1882, three years after Thomas Edison invented the light. bulb. The lights were red, white, and blue.
12. c. No one is sure, but probably because holly is red and green.
13. d. The poinsettia, which according to Mexican legend grew at the feet of a poor boy who had nothing to offer the Christ Child.
14. b. In 1892.
15. c. Six geese a-laying.
16. a. Handel wrote the Messiah in just 24 days in 1741.
17. c. Gene Autry, the Singing Cowboy.
18. c. Jingle Bells.
19. b. "Holiday Inn," with Bing Crosby, Fred Astaire, and Marjorie Reynolds. It was later remade under the title "White Christmas."
20. d. Elizabeth Taylor.