Have you ever wondered why the day after Christmas is called Boxing Day? Contrary to popular belief, it has nothing to do with the act of boxing!
Why is it Called Boxing Day?
Arguments abound on the origins of the name Boxing Day. One thing that is certain is that the name originated from the United Kingdom. All the answers below are valid, so maybe it is one, or even all of them.
The name is a reference to holiday gifts.
A ‘Christmas Box’ in Britain is a name for a Christmas present. Boxing Day was traditionally a day off for servants and the day when they received a ‘Christmas Box’ from the master. The servants would also go home on Boxing Day to give ‘Christmas Boxes’ to their families.
The name is a reference to charity drives.
A box to collect money for the poor traditionally and placed in Churches on Christmas day and opened the next day – Boxing Day.
The name refers to a nautical tradition.
Great sailing ships when setting sail would have a sealed box containing money on board for good luck. Where the voyage a success, the box was given to a priest, opened at Christmas and the contents then given to the poor.
Although the practice of giving gifts to the less privileged on December 26 has faded with charity now being given in the weeks leading up to Christmas, the Boxing Day name has endured.
These days, December 26 is a popular holiday in the United Kingdom and Commonwealth countries for watching sports such as soccer and cricket, shopping and visiting friends.
Boxing Day is a time to spend with family or friends, usually those not seen on Christmas Day itself. You can either choose to relax at home with your family, or keep celebrating in the spirit of Christmas.