When you think Christmas, you probably envision pine trees, holly berries, gift giving, some Christmas stress, and plenty of cheer. But don’t forget about candles, which have played a major role in Christmas throughout the ages. Since Christmas is a Christian holiday, candles have played both religious and home decorating roles for centuries, including the 5 roles that follow.

1. Christmas Tree Decorations

Long before electricity, decorated evergreen trees didn’t simply go without lights. People used candles to illuminate the branches. They were put on the tree not only for beauty’s sake, but also as a symbol of the star that, according to the Bible, proclaimed the birth of the Christ child. Today, the candles have been replaced with electric lights to escape the fire hazard, but candles are still a symbolic force during the Christmas season.

2. Frankincense Conveyer

Frankincense is a very popular scent during Christmastime. According to the story of Christ’s birth, three wise men, or princes from distant lands, attended his birth, bringing with them the precious substances frankincense, gold, and myrrh. Since that time, many have looked for a great way to bring the valuable frankincense oil into their home. From this search came incense and candles, giving candles yet another role during Christmas.

3. A Guide for Christ

A popular custom during Christmastime is the placing of candles or lights in windows. This practice started long ago when Christianity spread far and wide, and many Christians placed candles in their windows as a symbol of welcoming for the Christ child into their home.

4. Gifts

In Roman festivals during Christmastime, long candles were given as gifts to those in attendance, and the practice has not ceased through the ages. Candles make great gifts for everyone during Christmastime because of their beauty, scent, and traditional meaning.

5. Home Decor

Candles have and always will make great functional decor pieces for any home interior. The tradition has been around for centuries, but it was most widespread when Albert, the German Prince who married Queen Victoria, introduced the holiday of Christmas to Britain. The castle was decorated with many a candle to celebrate the season.

Although the reasoning behind these many roles is often forgotten or overlooked, the tradition of placing candles around the home during Christmas time is alive and well. Candles are a great way to keep the Christmas spirit around in any home.

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