‘White Christmas’ Bing Crosby and Marjorie Reynolds

Lovely, sweet and beautiful song. A walk down memory lane, when winter included horse-drawn sleigh rides and Christmas Holidays were filled with singing carols by the fire.

Artists: Bing Crosby and Marjorie Reynolds, song:’ White Christmas’, movie: Holiday Inn (1942) Paramount Pictures, Songwriter: Irving Berlin.

Domenico Veneziano. The Martyrdom of St. LucySaint Lucia or Saint Lucy of Syracuse, (Spanish: Santa Lucia) was a young Roman Christian woman who refused to marry because she wanted to dedicate her life to God. Her rejected bridegroom betrayed her and she was put to death by the Roman Emperor, Diocletian.  She is the patron saint of the blind. The root of Lucia is luc or lux, Latin for light. You can find out more about Saint Lucy at Saints & Angels.

Christian Missionaries traveled to Scandinavia telling stories of Saint Lucy’s courage; she became known as Lucia Bride. The elders often tell stories of how Lucia Bride, dressed in white with a crown of ‘light’ ,would bring food and drink to the poor. She is seen as the ‘Light bearer’ in times of darkness.

 

santalucia

Santa Lucia Day or Luciadagen is celebrated December 13 in Scandinavia. The story of Saint Lucia is reenacted in many Swedish homes with the eldest daughter becoming Lucia Bride dressing in white with a crown of candles. Early in the morning she will bring her parents sweet saffron buns and coffee. Lucia celebrations are often held at the workplace and school. They have a procession with a Lucia, attendants, and starmen with pointed hats, caroling and sharing of saffron cake, ginger biscuits and drinks. One of the popular carols sung is ‘White Christmas’.

Saint Lucia is also honored in Italy where many Christians celebrate with bonfires and torchlight parades.

Happy Santa Lucia Day! Have a wonderful day filled with Light.

 

The lovely painting above left is called The Martyrdom of St. Lucy by Domenico Veneziano (circa 1445-48). It is one of the predelas (side panels) of Santa Lucia del Magnoli Altarpiece in Berlin, Germany that was split into separate panels. Domenico, de Bartolomeo di Venezia (c. 1405/10 – 1461) born in Venice, lived most of his life in Florence, Italy. An early Renaissance painter who studied with Gentile da Fabriano in 1422-23. He was one of the founders of the 15th-century Florentine school of painting.

The photo above right ‘a young girl dressed as Saint Lucia’ is from the short film ‘Santa Lucia’ by Elsa Entertainment. You can see more at elsaentertainment.com.

~Bonnee Klein Gilligan

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